The victim of a killing outside Eureka Tuesday had a long criminal record, including the attempted murder of a 62-year-old man during a burglary in 1991.
Humboldt County Coroner Dave Parris identified the man as Jack Dale Sovereign, 38, of Eureka. An autopsy is being scheduled, and investigators are not releasing the preliminary cause of death, saying it could interfere with potential witness statements.
In September 1991, Sovereign entered a house on N Street in Eureka and startled 62-year-old William Naish, who was sleeping on the couch. According to Humboldt County Superior Court documents and news reports from the time, Naish reached for a phone to call police. Sovereign tore the cord from the wall and then repeatedly stabbed Naish with a knife. Naish survived with serious injuries, and police found Sovereign about two blocks from the scene and arrested him.
Sovereign pleaded guilty to attempted murder, and was sentenced to 10 years in prison. He appealed his plea, claiming that he didn't personally waive his right to a jury trial. The California Court of Appeal denied Sovereign's appeal.
Sovereign had several other felonies on his record, including a 2002 conviction for felony transportation of a controlled substance -- he was sentenced to six years in prison and five years probation. He pleaded guilty to possession of a controlled substance while on parole in early 2008, and then possession of a controlled substance months later.
The Humboldt County Sheriff's Office is also looking for two people of interest in the homicide, and is seeking two others for questioning. Authorities are looking for Katrina Lanai Inong, a 21-year-old American Indian, 5 feet 3 inches tall with black hair and brown eyes; and Ryan Anthony Salas, aka “Stomper,” a 24-year-old American Indian, 5 feet 9 inches tall, with black hair and brown eyes. The two have no felony crimes on their records, according to Humboldt County Court records.
The Sheriff's Office also wants to question Sonia Lexion Hunscker, described as American Indian, 5 feet 3 inches tall, 135 pounds with black hair and brown eyes, and Sunny Nix, described only as an American Indian male.
The Sheriff's Office is also attempting to locate two vehicles that may be involved in the incident: a blue or gray 1990 Toyota 4Runner, California license plate 2PNH763, and a blue Ford Ranger with a camper shell.
Deputies responded to a Santa Clara Street residence at 3:28 a.m. Tuesday and found a man, later identified as Sovereign, dead at the scene. Sovereign's body was draped with a white sheet for hours while investigators searched the area. A towel or cloth under Sovereign's head was soaked with what appeared to be blood.
One neighbor described hearing a single gunshot at the time, and a car speed away from the scene. But investigators are withholding details of Sovereign's death. Detective Steve Quenell said Wednesday that investigators want to speak with potential witnesses of the incident to corroborate facts.
”We're still in the process of trying to put the puzzle together,” Quenell said.
Quenell said that authorities had not detained anyone in the case as of late afternoon Wednesday.
John Driscoll can be reached at 441-0504 or firstname.lastname@example.org.