September 15, 2014
Trial will be Feb. 2 for man accused
in 2012 murder on Hatteras
By CATHERINE KOZAK
trial date for the Ohio man accused of killing his former girlfriend
while visiting Hatteras Island two years ago was announced Monday in
Dare County Superior Court.
Nathan Summerfield, 29, of
Ashland, is charged with first-degree murder in the stabbing and
strangling death of Lynn Jackenheimer, whose body was found in the
grass off a Frisco cul-de-sac on July 14, 2012. He pleaded not guilty,
and his trial is scheduled for Feb. 2.
Jackenheimer, 33, also
of Ashland, had last been seen the night of July 3, when she was
hunting ghost crabs with her two children.
ill-fitting orange jumpsuit, with his dark hair and beard clipped
short, Summerfield was led into the courtroom, where he sat
hunch-shouldered between his defense attorneys, Jackson Warmack and
Samuel Dixon, both from Edenton.
The defense team had filed
motions with the court, most of them seeking disclosure of information
from the state. Dixon said later that the 30 motions were made to
protect the constitutional rights of his client, and he expects that
more will be filed.
Summerfield listened attentively as
special prosecutor H.P. Williams from Elizabeth City addressed Superior
Court Judge J.C. Cole, telling him that the prosecution consented to
recordation of all proceedings and agreed that pre-trial motions will
be heard on Dec. 8 before Superior Court Judge Jerry Tillett, who is
expected to try the case in February.
was appointed to the case after the death last year of then-District
Attorney Frank Parrish and the subsequent appointment of his
replacement, Andrew Womble.
Womble, the district’s former Public
Defender, had briefly represented Summerfield. Williams had been
the District Attorney prior to Parrish.
Both sides consented on Monday to submit all discovery to the court by Jan. 5.
Responding to Cole, Summerfield said he had no questions for the court.
then 27, had been vacationing on Hatteras Island with Jackenheimer, the
mother of his 3-year-old son, during the July 4 week. After
Jackenheimer disappeared, Summerfield left the Outer Banks with his son
and Jackenheimer’s 13-year-old daughter and dropped them off with
family in Ohio.
He then fled. After a five-week manhunt, he
was found in an Ohio motel room. On Aug. 15, he was arrested and later
extradited to North Carolina, where he has been held without bond at
Dare County Detention Center in Manteo.
Summerfield, who worked as
a medical sleep technician, has a criminal record that includes a
domestic violence offense against Jackenheimer in 2009.
The state has decided that Jackenheimer’s killing does not meet the standard for a capital murder.
a 2012 interview, Jackenheimer’s mother, Lora Johnson, said that her
daughter had been working on having a cordial relationship with
Summerfield for the benefit of their son, but had no intention of
rekindling a romantic relationship.