Dispatcher Blog

Man convicted of killing, cover-up arrested for violating probation in Bellingham

A man convicted of a horrific killing and its cover-up was arrested for violating his probation Monday, June 15, at Bellis Fair mall in Bellingham.

Wesley Vernon Jefferson, 31, made a jewelry salesperson at a kiosk nervous by fiddling with a knife while inside the mall around 2:55 p.m. He and a woman he was with, Sandra Rose Jefferson, 29, also went into a part of the mall that’s for employees only, so police were called so they could be given a trespassing notice.

Officers caught up with the Jeffersons in the parking lot. A routine warrant check on Wesley revealed he was wanted in Seattle for violating his probation in a homicide case.

Back in December 2004, Jefferson got into a fight with the mother of his children, Sophia Solomon, 23, a Tulalip tribal member. She jumped from a van and ran into the woods on the Tulalip reservation. He chased her down and strangled her to death, then tried to disguise the death as a suicide by hanging. Because Jefferson was also a tribal member — Lummi — the case went to the federal courts, where he pleaded guilty to voluntary manslaughter.

He was sentenced to the maximum of 10 years.

“Part of me wishes I could double, triple or quadruple the sentence,” Judge Robert S. Lasnik said at the time.

Since re-entering society he has struggled. Less than a month after his release from prison, for example, Jefferson was found passed out and severely intoxicated at 8 o’clock in the morning in violation of his probation, according to a federal court records.

On Monday he was booked into Whatcom County Jail on a U.S. Marshals hold. He remained there as of Tuesday evening.

Ms. Jefferson had a warrant out for her arrest, too, for not showing up to court to face drug charges. She also remained in jail Tuesday.

Reach Caleb Hutton at 360-715-2276 or caleb.hutton@bellinghamherald.com. Read the Dispatcher blog at bellinghamherald.com/dispatcher-blog and follow him on Twitter at @bhamcaleb.