Crime

One arrested and Whatcom Sheriff seeking 2 more after alleged home-invasion burglary

Here’s what the Whatcom County Sheriff’s Office does

The Whatcom County Sheriff's Office enforces the law in the unincorporated areas of Whatcom County as well as on the county's waterways.
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The Whatcom County Sheriff's Office enforces the law in the unincorporated areas of Whatcom County as well as on the county's waterways.

Update Sunday, July 7: Danielle Nichole Coakley, 34, was captured Saturday, July 6, in Snohomish County, according to Whatcom County Sheriff Bill Elfo on Facebook.

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One man was arrested and the Whatcom County Sheriff’s Office is searching for another man and a woman following a reported home invasion-style burglary that left a man with multiple knife wounds early Wednesday, July 3, east of Ferndale.

The Sheriff’s office booked Antini Joseph Saselli, 31 of Bellingham into Whatcom County Jail on Thursday on suspicion of first-degree burglary, first-degree assault and first-degree attempted robbery.

According to a press release Friday on the incident, deputies are still seeking Danielle Nichole Coakley, 34, and Steven Dale Scharton, 37, who are both wanted on suspicion of first-degree burglary, first-degree assault and first-degree attempted robbery.

According to the release, deputies, and later detectives and crime scene investigators, responded at approximately 7:23 a.m. Wednesday to the 6100 block of Aldrich Road after it was reported that three people had entered a home, assaulted two occupants — a man and a woman — and fled the area.

One of the victims was requesting medical attention for knife wounds that he had suffered during the alleged attack.

An investigation into the incident revealed that the two victims were guests sleeping in a spare room of the home, and that the homeowner had left at approximately 7 a.m., according to the release. Video surveillance showed the owner talked to a woman in a white Volkswagen sedan as he left the driveway, and the Volkswagen continued down the driveway.

Shortly after 7 a.m., Saselli, Scharton and Coakley entered the room where the two victims were sleeping, according to the release. Saseli and Scharton were wearing hoods over their faces, exposing only their eyes, and both reportedly were carrying knives. Coakley, who the victims knew as “Danielle,” allegedly was carrying a wrench.

Coakley asked the victims, “Where’s my stuff?” the release stated, and one of the male suspects said, “Where’s your money?”

Saselli and Scharton then reportedly jumped on the bed and began attacking the male victim. He fought back, the release stated, and was able to disarm one of the suspects but suffered stab and cut wounds to his hand and leg during the struggle.

Saselli also suffered a “severe cut” to one of his hands, according to the release, before the suspects tried to flee.

Scharton ran out the front door, reportedly dropping his identification card on the way out, and Coakley also left through the front door after hitting the female victim, and the pair left in the Volkswagen. Saselli jumped through a window, staggered down the driveway and left in an unknown direction, according to the release.

The male victim was taken to the hospital with significant, but not life-threatening injuries, the release stated.

Deputies reportedly identified two of the suspects and searched for them.

At approximately 9 p.m., the Lynden Police Department was called to check on the welfare of a man who was found walking in the 8000 block of Guide Meridian who was reportedly disoriented and suffering from a cut on his hand.

Sheriff’s detectives also responded and found Saselli was wearing the same clothing that was seen on the video surveillance footage from the burglary, the release said. After Saselli was taken to the hospital for medical treatment, he was booked into jail.

The Volkswagen was recovered abandoned Friday in the Birch Bay area, according to the release.

Saselli made his first appearance in Whatcom County Superior Court on Friday, according to court records. He has previous Whatcom County felony convictions for possession of a controlled substance without a prescription, second-degree possession of stolen property and controlled-substance violation.

Scharton is scheduled for jury trial in Whatcom County Superior Court Aug. 12 for charges of forgery, second-degree theft, first-degree identity theft and bail jumping from 2017, court records show.

Coakley has previous Whatcom County felony convictions for first-degree criminal impersonation and controlled-substance possession without a prescription.

The Sheriff’s office asks anyone with information about the location of Scharton or Coakley to call 360-778-6600 or 911.

David Rasbach joined The Bellingham Herald in 2005 and now covers breaking news. He has been an editor and writer in several western states since 1994.
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