During the six months Jason Charles Sumey lived with a Fall City family, he used the name “Steven Davidson” because he was wanted by police for failing to register as a sex offender.
KIRO 7 has learned, while Sumey was on the lam, detectives believe he cooked-up a haunted house scheme to get his hands on the family's money.
The so-called haunting lasted for months. Windows were suddenly shattered, trucks were dented, “random items would be glued down or glued to walls,” according to King County Superior Court documents.
Investigators believe the 38-year old Sumey was responsible for the more than $30,000 in damage, which started shortly after Sumey moved into the Fall City home last August to live with the homeowners' granddaughter.
Chen Saeteurn said she didn’t know her granddaughter’s boyfriend was in trouble with the law until he was arrested in February. The family members also didn’t know their house guest’s real name. “We didn’t know,” Saeteurn told KIRO 7’s Amy Clancy. “We thought he was a good guy.”
According to court documents, the "strange happenings" also included faucets turning on by themselves and food coloring "splattered across carpets, walls and furniture." Sumey started multiple fires on the lawn surrounding the home, which he claimed would fight evil, but promised his "uncle" could get rid of the “spirits” for good --- for a fee. Over the course of four months, the family paid Sumey $64,452.
Sumey “used deception in order to trick the family into believing something that he knew was not in fact true,” King County Sheriff’s Office spokesman Sgt. Stan Seo told KIRO 7.
“What we believe he was doing was targeting vulnerable individuals and exploiting their belief system.”
Sumey has a long criminal history for theft by deception, rape and failing to register as a sex offender.
Investigators believe Sumey could have multiple victims who know him as "Steve Davidson" or another alias.
Meanwhile, Saeteurn said her family hasn’t had any problems with “spirits” since Sumey was arrested in February. “The bad spirits went with him,” she said.
Sumey has been charged with nine counts of theft in the second degree and malicious mischief in the first degree – domestic violence. He remains behind bars in lieu of $130,000 bail.