Photo courtesy of LBPD.

A man was sentenced to life in prison without the possibility of parole on Wednesday for the 2009 fatal stabbing of a 76-year-old woman at her Long Beach home. A second man who was also convicted in the case had his sentencing postponed.

Victorville resident Daniia Lasean Davis, 26, was found guilty in May of one count each of first-degree murder, first-degree burglary with a person present and attempted residential robbery.

Jurors found true the special circumstance allegations of murder during the commission of a burglary and robbery against Davis, who also goes by Dontae Davis.

Co-defendant Freddie James Battle, 27, of Long Beach, was convicted of the same charges and allegations and was scheduled to be sentenced Thursday but is now due back in the Long Beach courtroom on July 7.

Both men were charged in the killing of Leam Sovanasy who was found dead in her Long Beach home on Jan. 31, 2009. She was a Cambodian immigrant who survived the Khmer Rouge genocide.

In July 2013, investigators released a composite sketch of one of the suspects along with the car he allegedly drove—a white Chevrolet Caprice—and a month later Davis contacted the LBPD, claiming he was the person convicted and would appear at the department with his lawyer. He failed to show up.


Authorities then looked into Davis’ records and discovered he was active in the pawn industry and often paired himself with Battle in his pawn doings. With the new information, police then released a sketch of Battle.

Battle was arrested in September 2013 in downtown Long Beach and Davis was arrested that same month in Victorville. DNA samples gathered from both men matched those collected at the crime scene, authorities said.


Both men have been held without bail.

Stephanie Rivera is the community engagement editor. Reach her at [email protected] or on Twitter at @StephRivera88.