Crime

$5 million bail set for man accused of killing South Hill woman and fleeing to Canada

Accused killer of 19-year-old South Hill woman appears in court

Jordan Eaton appeared for an arraignment at Pierce County Superior Court. He pled not guilty to charges of killing 19-year-old Cassandra Scaff.
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Jordan Eaton appeared for an arraignment at Pierce County Superior Court. He pled not guilty to charges of killing 19-year-old Cassandra Scaff.

A man accused of killing a South Hill woman earlier this year and fleeing to Canada has been ordered held in lieu of $5 million bail.

Jordan Mark Eaton, 26, pleaded not guilty at arraignment Monday to first-degree murder, vehicle theft and unlawful gun possession.

Prosecutors say he shot 19-year-old Cassandra Scaff Jan. 28 at the South Hill home where they were staying.

Then he allegedly stole a van and fled to Canada, where police found him at a medical facility in Surrey. He made a failed bid for asylum, officials said, and was extradited to the United States last week.

Eaton interrupted his proceedings Monday by telling the court that he wanted to designate various people in the room as beneficiaries and executors of some sort of trust account.

Pierce County Superior Court Commissioner Sabrina Ahrens told Eaton it was not his turn to speak, at which point Eaton tried to fire the attorney assigned to represent him during the arraignment.

Deputy prosecutor Rosie Martinelli asked Ahrens to set bail at $5 million, noting Eaton’s criminal history and flight to Canada.

Ahrens agreed.

Eaton’s previous convictions include fourth-degree assault, unlawful gun possession and unlawful solicitation to possess a gun, and he has a pending malicious mischief case.

Kylee Lovejolley, Scaff’s 22-year-old sister, told The News Tribune in January that she thought Scaff had been dating Eaton for about five years and that they’d been living with Eaton’s parents.

“She was just the sweetest person you could ever possibly have known,” Lovejolley said. “She loved her dogs and she loved animals and she just had the kindest heart.”

Charging papers don’t address a motive for the shooting but do say Eaton sent text messages a couple hours prior that said: “I just gotta go cause I cause nothing but pain for myself and others,” and, “Nobody will be able to get ahold of me anymore after today.”

Court records show his parents sought a protection order against him in 2016. They said in one of their petitions that he needed help for his mental health, anger management and drug and alcohol rehabilitation.

In one case, charging papers say, he grabbed a gun after an argument with his parents, threatened to kill himself and fired a shot in an unknown direction.

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