DARE COUNTY, N.C. (WAVY) – The case against a man accused of killing his former girlfriend two years ago still has not gone to trial, and won’t until next year.
WAVY News 10’s Andy Fox was in the Dare County court Monday morning, when a motions hearing for the suspect, Nate Summerfield, was postponed until December 8. Summerfield’s attorneys and the prosecutors said they want all 30 pre-trial motions and all proceedings to be heard by the trial judge.
Police say Summerfield killed his ex-girlfriend, Lynn Jackenheimer, while they were on vacation on Hatteras Island in 2012. They were vacationing from Ohio, along with Jackenheimer’s daughter from a previous relationship and the couple’s three-year-old son. Investigators found Jackenheimer’s body in Frisco. Officers tracked Summerfield down at a motel in Ohio, following a five-week manhunt.
A grand jury indicted him on first-degree murder. As of now, he will not face capital murder charges and will not face the death penalty. He does face life in prison without parole as the likely sentence for a guilty verdict.
It should be noted that two years ago Summerfields’ brother called 911 after Lynn went missing. This was just after Summerfield returned home. The following is a transcript of part of that call:
Caller identifies himself as Jake Summerfield, who is Nate’s brother. Jake states, “Hi, my name is Jake Summerfield. I wanted to report a possible murder.”
Caller: “My brother was in North Carolina with his ex-girlfriend, and he came back, and he said he strangled her.”
He said in the call that his brother told him he had strangled Jackenheimer, and investigators wrote in the Application for a search warrant that “Nathan Summerfield made statements to the fact of strangling Lynn Jackenheimer and burying the body in our jurisdiction.”
During 10 On Your Side’s investigation when the crime first took place, we found the police reports from Ohio. The 60-day sentence Summerfield got and was then placed on one year probation for grabbing her throat and choking her in December 2009.
We now know what happened July 4, 2012: Jackenheimer was killed, and now Summerfield’s accused of her murder. That is one of the reasons Temple Heggie with the Outer Banks Hotline showed up up at court Monday.
“Several of us came down to honor the memory of Lynn Jackenheimer, who was murdered, and to support the family that drove down from Ohio to be here today,” she told WAVY.com.
Back in 2012, Jackenheimer’s daughter, Ciara, said this about the man accused of killing her mother: “He [Summerfield] murdered my mother, and I don’t like that, and I don’t know what to do about that at all.”
Ciara was with her mother and Summerfield and the couples’ son, Leland, on that Outer Banks trip. Ciara spoke about Summerfield’s capture back in 2012.
“I feel really happy. He deserves the death chair, or he deserves to stay there [in prison] the rest of his life. I don’t like him,” she said.
Temple Heggie said on Monday, “domestic violence happens everyday. It is happening everyday, everywhere. A murder happened in our town, so we just need to be here for this family.”
During Monday’s hearing, the judge asked Summerfield if he had anything to say. He responded, “no, sir.” Lynn’s father Raymond Johnson then blurted out, “why not?”
The judge set the first-degree murder trial of Nathan Summerfield for Feb. 2, 2015.