A 21-year-old Napakiak man faces murder charges after a grand jury indictment in the death of a Bethel cab driver.
Alaska State Troopers say Kyle Motgin killed Young Suk Chong, a 45-year-old driver for Taxi Cab Company, on Jan. 31.
Three days later, troopers arrested Motgin on outstanding assault charges. He was indicted Tuesday on counts of first- and second-degree murder, robbery, vehicle theft, evidence tampering and theft, according to the indictment.
According to Bethel radio station KYUK, Chong and her husband drove cabs in Bethel to support their daughter's college education.
Chong was reported missing in Bethel about 3 a.m. Jan. 31. Someone found the cab Feb. 1 about 15 miles to the southwest, down the frozen Kuskokwim River, near the dump in the village of Napakiak. Chong's body was inside, troopers say. Troopers have not released her cause of death.
Investigators analyzed the crime scene, questioned residents of Bethel and Napakiak, and got tips that led to Motgin, a trooper spokeswoman said.
Court records show Motgin has three assault convictions in the past three years and a history of alcohol abuse.
With the help of village public safety officers, troopers found Motgin in the village and arrested him on assault charges stemming from a July 4, 2011 incident in which he bit a woman on the lip, according to the charging document.
Meanwhile, Chong's body was flown to Anchorage for an autopsy and the investigators conducted searches in Napakiak and Bethel, troopers said.
Motgin is jailed at Yukon Kuskokwim Correctional Center and held on $500,000 cash bail.
Reach Casey Grove at firstname.lastname@example.org or 257-4589.