Johnson City Press Tuesday, July 29, 2014

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Update: Deputies identify Johnson City crash victims; woman was stabbed twice before wreck

December 3rd, 2013 1:15 pm by Becky Campbell

Update: Deputies identify Johnson City crash victims; woman was stabbed twice before wreck

(Photo by Lee Talbert/Johnson City Press)

Authorities identified the two people killed in Monday's crash as BounLeua Bet Sonekeo, 38, and Misty Dawn Sonekeo, 36. 

Authorities first identified the body of BounLeua Bet Sonekeo through identification found on him following the crash. That identification led authorities to a residence at 106 Copper Court, Johnson City.

There, they found blood outside the home and a blood trail leading inside the residence. Inside, they found a large amount of blood on a bed.

Investigators also said the house was in disarray as if a struggle had taken place there.

A preliminary examination of Misty Dawn Sonekeo's body revealed at least two stab wounds to the upper chest area. Sheriff's investigators were able to identify her by tattoos found on her body.

Authorities remain unclear on what caused BounLeua Bet Sonekeo, who deputies say was driving, to go off the road. But there were no skid marks of any kind to indicate he applied the brakes or tried to stop in any way, authorities added.

Investigators also don't know if Misty Dawn Sonekeo died in the crash or if she was already dead from the stab wounds she sustained. Based on the amount of blood found at the residence, it is possible she was already dead, authorities said.

The Sonekeos reportedly were in the process of a separation.

Keep checking JohnsonCityPress.com for more on the press conference.

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Update:

Washington County Sheriff Ed Graybeal said Tuesday morning that investigators were still working to confirm the identities of two victims who died in Monday morning's accident on Knob Creek Dock Road and notify the next of kin.

The sheriff has called a 2 p.m. press conference about the crash at his office in Jonesborough.

Keep checking JohnsonCityPress.com for information as the story develops.

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Earlier version:

Washington County sheriff’s investigators found blood and other evidence of possible domestic violence that could have preceded a fiery crash on Knob Creek Dock Road Monday morning that killed two people.


The wreck happened just after 10 a.m. when a 2007 Mitsubishi Eclipse traveling from Austin Springs Road toward the Bristol Highway went off the road just before the bridge that crosses the Watauga River.


Sheriff Ed Graybeal confirmed two adults died in the wreck and ensuing blaze, which happened just south of the bridge that crosses the Watauga River. He said the Eclipse, a two-door convertible, veered to the left and off the road just before the bridge. 


As recovery efforts were under way at the crash scene, another investigation was being conducted by the WCSO in reference to the possible previous domestic disturbance involving the two who died in the crash.


More than one motorist passed by the burning car, according to two women who saw the immediate aftermath of the fiery wreck.


“Several people drove by from both (directions),” said Samantha Webb as she and her stepmother, Teresa Webb, watched the recovery effort from their dock.


Washington County emergency responders worked for more than three hours to recover the bodies of the two people killed in the single-vehicle crash.


The car flipped, landed on its top and lodged against a tree then apparently burst into flames.


The two people inside the car had been tentatively identified, but officials would not release their names until the next of kin had been notified.


“We think it’s a male and female, but we’re not sure,” Graybeal said. He said investigators would obtain dental records to positively identify the bodies.


Teresa and Samantha Webb were inside their nearby home when they heard an explosion.


“We didn’t see it, but we heard it,” Teresa Webb said. Her home is located on the same side of the bridge, but across the waterway from where the car landed and caught on fire.


“I heard a big boom. I looked out the window and didn’t see anything,” she said. After hearing a second explosion, “I looked out again and saw the woods on fire,” she said.


Samantha Webb ran down to the dock. When she realized it was a car burning, she told her stepmother to call 911.


Teresa Webb said there was nothing she or her stepdaughter could do to help the victims.


“There’s wrecks here all the time,” Teresa said about the road she lives on. Just last week a vehicle went off the road, hit their mailbox and trash can and then landed on its side in the creek.


“My husband went down there and pulled the girl out,” she said.


Identities of the victims could be released today.

An earlier version of the story

More than one motorist passed by a burning car that crashed on Knob Creek Dock Road in North Johnson City Monday morning, according to two women who saw the immediate aftermath of the fiery wreck.


“Several people drove by from both (directions),” said Samantha Webb as she and her stepmother, Teresa Webb, watched the recovery effort from their dock.


Washington County emergency responders worked for more than three hours to recover the bodies of the two people killed in the single-vehicle crash.


Sheriff Ed Graybeal confirmed two adults died in the wreck and ensuing blaze, which happened just south of the bridge that crosses Watauga River. He said the vehicle — a 2007 Mitsubishi Eclipse — was traveling toward the Bristol Highway from the Austin Springs Road area. For some reason, the driver veered to the left and off the road just before the bridge. 


The car flipped, landed on its top and lodged against a tree then apparently burst into flames.


The two people inside the car had been tentatively identified, but officials would not release their names until the next of kin had been notified.


“We think it’s a male and female, but we’re not sure,” Graybeal said. He said investigators would obtain dental records to positively identify the bodies.

Meanwhile, another investigation is being conducted by the WCSO in reference to a possible previous domestic disturbance involving the two who died in the crash.


The wreck happened just after 10 a.m.

Teresa and Samantha Webb were inside their nearby home when they heard an explosion.


“We didn’t see it, but we heard it,” Teresa Webb said. Her home is located on the same side of the bridge, but across the waterway from where the car landed and caught on fire.


“I heard a big boom. I looked out the window and didn’t see anything,” she said. After hearing a second explosion, “I looked out again and saw the woods on fire,” she said.


Samantha Webb ran down to the dock. When she realized it was a car burning, she told her stepmother to call 911.


Teresa Webb said there was nothing she or her stepdaughter could do to help the victims.


“There’s wrecks here all the time,” Teresa said about the road she lives on. Just last week a vehicle went off the road, hit their mailbox and trash can and then landed on its side in the creek.


“My husband went down there and pulled the girl out,” she said.


More details about Monday’s crash are expected to be released later.

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Earlier update published at 11 a.m.:

Update: Washington County Sheriff Ed Graybeal confirmed that a fiery crash off Knob Creek Dock Road in north Johnson City this morning included two fatalities.

Investigators had preliminarily identified the victims, but Graybeal said crews were attempting to turn the two-door convertible upright to confirm the identities of those killed in the wreck.

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Earlier report:

Washington County Sheriff's Office investigators have been called to the scene of a fiery crash on Knob Creek Dock Road in north Johnson City.

The crash was near the bridge on Knob Creek Dock Road, and the vehicle reportedly was engulfed in flames following an explosion. The fire also extended into the adjacent woods.

Dispatchers at 911 indicated the crash included two possible fatalities.

Authorities had closed Knob Creek Dock Road as firefighters arrived to battle the blaze. Sheriff Ed Graybeal said the vehicle was hung up in trees down the bank on the lakeside.

Knob Creek Dock Road off the Bristol Highway across from Winged Deer Park.

Keep visiting JohnsonCityPress.com for updates as information becomes available.

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