Canadian Sought in Death of San Clemente Retiree

San Clemente police investigators Thursday identified a Canadian wanted on suspicion of killing a retired Air Force lieutenant-colonel who had befriended the suspect a few days before.

Police Lt. Al Ehlow identified the wanted man as Blair Nobel, 20, of Toronto.

Ehlow said police in Toronto, where Nobel has a criminal record, had sent San Clemente investigators a photograph and fingerprints.

William Harding Baker, 65, was found dead Wednesday in a pool of blood in his home. Police officers were alerted by Baker’s tenant, who discovered his landlord’s body at about 2 a.m.


The tenant, John Armand Forest, said he was awakened by a slamming door and the sound of running feet. Forest said Baker had picked up Nobel hitchhiking several days before, and that Nobel had been doing yard work for Baker.

Nobel, who Ehlow said might be carrying Baker’s .38-caliber revolver and $100 in traveler’s checks issued to the victim, has a missing front tooth, a hoop-style earring in his left ear and tattoos on his hands.

Ehlow said investigators believe the suspect might have headed to San Diego. He said Nobel had recently traveled from Vancouver, British Columbia, to Hollywood before he met Baker.