ST. BERNARD PARISH, LA (WVUE) - It was an emotional day for the victim's family. Mark Owens, 56, pleaded not guilty to first-degree murder and attempted first-degree murder. Doctors also spent time with Owens and told the judge that they believed he was competent to stand trial.
FOX 8 obtained the sanity evaluation report for Mark Owens. It revealed that Owens admitted himself to a hospital in Alexandria days before the killing, telling doctors he was having homicidal thoughts about his ex-wife, Kimberly Owens, and former Parish President Dave Peralta. According to the report, Owens was released from that hospital on Sept. 25.
It was two days later when police say Mark Owens hid under Kimberly Owens' home. They say when she attempted to leave for work, Mark Owens confronted her and attacked her with an ax. As Kimberly's mother witnessed the whole thing and tried to intervene, Mark Owens attacked her, too.
Kimberly Owens died before help could arrive.
Mark Owens later turned himself in to police.
It was not first time Mark and Kimberly were involved in a domestic incident. According to court documents, Mark Owens was detained in 2014 after he allegedly threatened Peralta, accusing him of being romantically involved with Kimberly. Kimberly Owens denied that ever happened.
In 2015, Mark Owens is accused of dragging Kimberly into a home and holding her hostage. A restraining order against Mark Owens was terminated in December of last year.
Kimberly Owens' family wants the tragedy to bring awareness to domestic violence. They're holding a benefit in memory of Kimberly Dec. 2 from 7 p.m. until 10 p.m. It will take place at the Frederick Sigur Center in Chalmette. The benefits will go towards Kimberly's son and the battered women's shelter in St. Bernard Parish.