(St. Anthony Tulsa) - Friday night, tragedy struck as Khalid Jabara, a member of St. Antony Orthodox Christian Church, was gunned down outside of his parents’ home in Tulsa.
As the news coverage continues about Khalid, those of us at St. Antony will always remember the young man who grew up in our parish. Khalid had a huge heart and loved his parents, siblings, nieces and nephews. He was kind, funny, bright and caring; everyone who knew him was truly the better for it.
The entire St. Antony family mourns with the Jabara family and feels the loss of Khalid. May the love and compassion of our Lord and God and Savior Jesus Christ along with the prayers of the Most Holy Theotokos and all the saints bring their family peace and comfort and may the memory of Khalid truly be eternal.
(Tulsa World) - Less than three months before a 37-year-old man was shot on his front porch Friday evening, Tulsa County prosecutors deemed the man suspected of killing him “a substantial risk to the public.”
Prosecutors had attempted to keep 61-year-old Stanley Vernon Majors in jail while he awaited trial on an assault charge alleging that he drove his vehicle into Haifa Jabara in September, but he was granted bond and released in May.
Court records show a history of conflict between Majors and the family of his next-door neighbor, Jabara, who was granted a protective order against him in November 2013 after telling a Tulsa County judge that he had harassed her and “is very racist towards foreigners and blacks.”
Majors was prohibited from going near Jabara or her home or possessing firearms for the next five years. But now, within three years, he is accused of fatally shooting her son, Khalid Jabara, at the family’s south Tulsa home.
Majors, who also uses his middle name, Vernon, as a first name, had been ordered to remain 300 yards away from Haifa Jabara and her home. He was prohibited from having any contact with her and from possessing firearms until November 2018.
Majors was charged with violating Haifa Jabara’s protective order in March 2015 after she told police he had yelled racial slurs at her in her driveway and threatened to kill her.
While arresting Majors, officers asked him multiple times to put down his beer, and he “chugged his beer before he put it down,” according to an arrest report.
Majors was charged with misdemeanor counts of violating the protective order and obstructing an officer, and he posted bond and was released from jail. His trial in that case is set for Oct. 3.
Last Sept. 12, prosecutors say Majors hit Haifa Jabara with a car in the 8700 block of East 95th Street and then left even though she had a broken shoulder and other injuries.
He was charged with assault and battery with a deadly weapon, leaving the scene of a collision involving injury, violating a protective order and public intoxication.
In March, a civil lawsuit stemming from the collision was filed against Majors in Tulsa County District Court. The suit, filed by plaintiffs Haifa Jabara and Mounah Jabara, is still pending and seeks actual and punitive damages totaling $600,000.
In the civil case, Majors is also listed by the last name Schmauss. Court records show that he was married to Stephen Anthony Schmauss in December 2014.
Majors initially had been denied bail on the assault charge, but after he had spent eight months in jail, his bail was set by District Judge William LaFortune.
Majors was released from custody on bond, and Assistant District Attorney Brett Mize responded with a motion asking LaFortune to reconsider bond or increase it on the assault count, which was set at $30,000, on top of the $10,600 bond on the other counts.
In addition to describing the violent allegations against Majors, the motion says he has “demonstrated a wanton disregard for the life of the victim and the safety of the public.”
At a hearing two days after Majors posted bond, LaFortune increased the bail on the assault count to $60,000, and Majors posted the difference.
On Friday, Khalid Jabara was shot in the 9300 block of South 85th East Avenue and died shortly after he was taken to Saint Francis Hospital.
Police found Majors hiding behind a tree at the nearby Hardesty Library, 8316 E. 93rd St., and he is now held without bail at the Tulsa Jail on complaints of first-degree murder and possession of a firearm after a felony conviction.
Majors was convicted in 2009 of threatening a crime with intent to terrorize in Los Angeles and was sentenced to 16 months in prison, records show.
Tulsa Police Homicide Sgt. Dave Walker and Assistant District Attorney John David Luton said Monday that it’s too early in the investigation to say whether Majors will be charged with a hate crime.
Veronica Laizure, Oklahoma Civil Rights director for the Council on American-Islamic Relations, says there were some indications that the homicide was possibly motivated by anti-Arab or anti-Muslim bias.
“There were some concerns arising from the perpetrator’s past actions, and there are some questions about how he was able to continue to harass and threaten and intimidate this family, as well as others in the neighborhood,” Laizure told the Tulsa World on Monday afternoon.
Laizure said CAIR has also heard reports that Majors had used racial slurs against other members of the community.
For now, however, CAIR is respecting the Jabara family’s wishes for privacy, Laizure said, and is “working on ways that we can mobilize community support and figure out where our best actions are going forward.”
On Monday, Khalid Jabara’s sister, Victoria Jabara Williams, posted on Facebook a statement from her family, saying their “world was shattered” when her brother was killed.
“The perpetrator was not unknown to us — he is our neighbor — someone whom we continuously brought to law enforcement’s attention,” the statement says.
The statement goes on to describe the alleged protective order violations and assault on Haifa Jabara and accuses Majors of using racial slurs against the family.
“This suspect had a history of bigotry against our family,” the statement says. “He repeatedly attacked our ethnicity and perceived religion, making racist comments. He often called us ‘dirty Arabs,’ ‘filthy Lebanese,’ ‘Aye-rabs,’ and ‘Mooslems’ — a fact highlighted by the Tulsa Police Department who also heard these comments from the suspect.”
The family says Majors should have been charged with a hate crime and should not have been granted bail on the assault charge.
“Yet he was released and put back next door to us, the family he assaulted just months before,” the statement says. “This is troubling at any time, but profoundly disturbing given the current climate of our country and the increase nationally in cases of hate crimes.”
The statement also says that shortly before the shooting, Khalid Jabara had called the police, “stating this man had a gun and that he was scared for what might happen.”
Walker confirmed on Monday that dispatch had received a call from Khalid Jabara regarding “suspicious activity” on the evening he was shot.
Police arrived to investigate but cleared the call shortly before the shooting occurred, Walker said.
The Tulsa World was unable to reach the Jabara family for an interview by press time on Monday.
“Our brother Khalid was just 37 years old and had his whole life ahead of him,” the family’s statement says. “He was a kind spirit, loving brother, uncle and son. Khalid’s heart was big. He cared for our entire family, our friends and people he didn’t even know. He created every Jabara family joke and filled our lives with love and laughter.
“All of that has been taken away from us by this hateful man and a system that failed to protect our community.”