BELLINGHAM - A man from the Lummi Reservation beat his ex-girlfriend's new lover to death out of jealousy at a Samish Way motel, according to the Whatcom County Prosecutor's Office.
David Alan Solomon Jr., 34, has since turned himself in to face a charge of first-degree murder.
Ike Pius Scarborough, 33, and Shirena Carolynn LeClaire, 29, didn't answer at 2:40 a.m. Sunday when they heard a man pounding on the door of Room 29 at the Aloha Motel. So for a moment, the man left. Security footage shows him returning, then kicking the door in, according to the charges filed in Whatcom County Superior Court.
The man grabbed Scarborough and took him to the ground. LeClaire "jumped over the two men and exited the motel room through the broken door," according to the charges. She ran to the motel manager. She claimed her ex-boyfriend, Solomon, had broken in to her room.
Prosecutors allege another man, Cody Alexander George, 25, walked from the parking lot to the room. There, he saw Scarborough on the floor, beaten almost to death by Solomon, just inside of the entryway, according to the charges.
Police found security footage showing the two men - one with a large tribal tattoo, which matches a tattoo on Solomon's arm - fleeing in a dark SUV. Solomon owns a black 2009 Pontiac Torrent. Detectives believe George drove them from the scene while Solomon rode in the passenger's seat.
The beating left Scarborough with life-threatening brain injuries. One day later, he died.
George and Solomon were neighbors on Michael Road, on the Lummi Reservation.
Police booked George into jail at 8 a.m. Sunday. He's suspected of rendering criminal assistance.
According to police, Solomon was arrested around 3 a.m. Tuesday at the Bellingham police station on Grand Avenue.
LeClaire had recently broken up with Solomon and he was "upset over the break up with Shirena," according to prosecutors. LeClaire insisted, in text messages, that she wanted to be with Scarborough instead.
After the beating, prosecutors said, Solomon texted her: "I know you told me, so I told Ike."
All three people involved have felonies on their record: Solomon, for vehicle theft and marijuana possession; Scarborough, for theft, burglary and robbery; and LeClaire, for stabbing a man in 2005 in front of a bar on Railroad Avenue.
Solomon made his first appearance in a jail courtroom at 3 p.m. Tuesday. Superior Court Commissioner Leon F. Henley interrupted himself twice as he read aloud the rights of the defendant: Solomon kept gazing at the closed-circuit television broadcasting a viewing room in the courthouse next door, where family and the general public can watch the proceedings.
"Mr. Solomon, are you listening to me?" Henley asked. "You appear to be looking over there. Pay attention to what I'm saying."
Henley set bail at $1 million. Solomon's arraignment is set for Dec. 27.