Man Kills Alleged Thief While Intervening in an Altercation


Dallas Police Unit | Image by NBC DFW

A local man was charged with murder after intervening in an alleged shoplifting attempt on Tuesday at the Family Dollar on S Lancaster Road in South Oak Cliff.

Kevin J. Jackson, 47, who had entered the store to buy something, found the accused shoplifter, Phillip Betts, 26, fighting with two female employees. He reportedly told the employees to move and fired a gun once, striking Betts, who was later pronounced deceased.

Store employees accused Betts of attempting to steal items from the store.

According to an affidavit, the assistant store manager identified Betts as someone “who frequently stole items from the store.”

She and another female employee confronted Betts, accusing him of stealing, and a physical confrontation ensued, with Betts punching and scratching the women, one of whom deployed mace.

The altercation caught Jackson’s attention when he entered the store. In a subsequent interview with Dallas police, Jackson stated that he “became concerned for the safety of the two women who worked at the store that were being assaulted” and was “fearful that … Betts would seriously injure one or both of the women.”

Jackson secured his firearm in his vehicle and waited for law enforcement to arrive at the scene.

“My sister was sitting inside, and she came in and she said she thought somebody got maced,” said Antwan Logan, a witness who works at the store next door, speaking with NBC 5. “So, I stepped outside and saw somebody laying on the ground and I walked over there to ask the cashier boss lady if everything was alright.”

Logan said Jackson had just ordered food at his store before walking to Family Dollar.

“He was a real nice dude, I had just sat there and had a 15- or 20-minute conversation with him,” Logan said. “Real nice, real calm, cool demeanor so I didn’t see this coming at all.”

Police arrested Jackson and charged him with murder, stating that the charge was appropriate because there was no imminent danger.

Jackson told the police that he did not see a weapon, and it was confirmed that Betts was unarmed. Additionally, according to the affidavit, surveillance footage of the incident showed the alleged shoplifter was running for the door when he was shot.

“Detectives looked at all of the evidence. And at the time of the shooting, there was no imminent danger of a deadly force confrontation,” stated Sergeant Warren Mitchell.

Jackson’s bail has been set at $100,000, and he has been approved for electronic ankle bracelet monitoring once it is paid, according to Dallas County jail records.

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2 months ago

I feel bad Jackson was arrested. Aside from that it was a great ending.

2 months ago

How soon before we hear the mutiple time thief was “just turning his life around” and they show his junior high graduation picture.