Crime - Sacto 911

Sacramento police interview, release suspects in Discovery Park fatal fight

The Sacramento Police Department on Tuesday interviewed and released a man and a woman sought in connection with a fatal fight that broke out during Sunday’s concert at Discovery Park.

Killed in the fight was Thomas Noble, 31, of Sacramento. Noble, a part-time package handler, leaves behind a school-age daughter, Sutter Middle School officials confirmed.

“Last night, the Police Department released some photographs that depicted two individuals we believed were involved in some manner in the assault that resulted in the loss of a man’s life over the weekend. Earlier (Tuesday), those two individuals arrived at the police station voluntarily along with a lawyer,” said Matthew McPhail, a Sacramento Police Department spokesman.

“Our detectives interviewed those people and at the conclusion of those interviews both of those subjects left the police station of their own accord.”

McPhail said he could not discuss details of the investigation or the interview. He added that it’s not uncommon for a suspect to remain free after being interviewed, as the inquiry continues.

Earlier Tuesday, United Parcel Service, the Sacramento County Coroner’s Office and Sacramento City Unified School District identified Noble as the victim.

“We are saddened at news of the weekend death of Thomas Noble, who was a part-time package handler at our Cordova building in Sacramento,” UPS spokesman Dan Cardillo said in an emailed statement.

Noble died early Sunday evening in an assault at the 102.5 Live concert in Discovery Park. Noble and another man “got into some kind of confrontation” at a food booth, McPhail said. Some witnesses said Noble was knocked to the ground by a punch and lost consciousness. McPhail said no weapons appear to have been involved.

Fire officials loaded the unconscious Noble into an ambulance and tried to revive him, McPhail said. Noble died at a hospital. The other combatant fled the scene, McPhail said. On Monday, the police released the suspects’ photo and asked the public to help identify the pair.

Noble’s daughter was in Boston as part of a school travel study at the time of the incident, said Gabe Ross, a spokesman for the Sacramento Unified School District. The student elected to remain on the trip, he confirmed.

In a letter to parents, teacher Katie Miller explained how the students are supporting their classmate.

“All the students immediately showed her their care and concern and support. The whole group wrapped (the student) in their arms. Human compassion at its finest,” Miller wrote.

The incident comes as some park supporters have been pushing to move large concerts out of the parkway. Just days before the event, the Save the American River Association sent a letter to the Sacramento County Board of Supervisors arguing that the concert and this coming Saturday’s SactoMoFo food festival at Discovery Park are prohibited under the American River Parkway Plan.

Discovery Park was home for the hard rock Monster Energy Aftershock Festival from 2012 to 2014. In 2014 the two-day music event drew 19,000 attendees daily. It moved to the 325-acre Gibson Ranch in 2015 to further expand the event. Organizers of SactoMoFo 9, the annual food truck festival, predict a crowd Saturday that could swell to 25,000.

The sold-out 102.5 Live event featured rappers E-40, Fat Joe + Remy Ma, Tyga, Ty Dolla $ignm Kehlani and The Internet.

KSFM’s 102.5 Live concert has been held at Discovery Park since 2012. The event also generated controversy in 2015 when a security guard was caught on camera while punching a disruptive concertgoer who was in handcuffs.

Steve Cottingim, senior vice president and market manager for CBS Radio, which owns 102.5 KSFM, said in a prepared statement Monday that they were “deeply saddened by the senseless tragedy.”

McPhail said police provided the security at the event.

“What we are confident in is the man that came into the police station this morning, that was depicted in the photographs, was involved in an altercation with the man that is now deceased,” McPhail said.

Published reports suggested the suspect was trying to defend himself and his pregnant girlfriend.

“The district attorney will make the final determination as to whether criminal prosecution is warranted,” McPhail said.

Ed Fletcher: 916-321-1269, @NewsFletch Mark Glover and Chris Macias contributed to this report.