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Police: Man charged in Anchorage shooting death

Tegan Hanlon
Family members of a shooting victim talk with Anchorage police officers and chaplains at the scene on Tuesday, August 12, 2014. An employee of an assisted-living home at 309 E. 24th Ave. in Midtown Anchorage died of a gunshot wound, according to the home's owner. Bob Hallinen

Update, 11 p.m. Tuesday:

Anchorage police charged 51-year-old Paul Miller Tuesday night with first-degree and second-degree murder after Eduardo Escalante, 63, was found dead inside an assisted-living home. 

Original story:

Anchorage police say one man is dead and another is in custody after a shooting late Tuesday afternoon inside an assisted-living home in a quiet Midtown neighborhood. 

Family members identified the victim as Eduardo Escalante. He and his wife moved from the Philippines to Anchorage in March and found jobs at the home at 309 E. 24th Ave., said his cousin Elmer Escalante. Records from the Alaska Department of Health and Social Services list the address as Allison Assisted Living Home, a state-licensed facility with the capacity to house five residents. 

On Tuesday evening, the small wood-paneled home was encased in crime-scene tape. Police had responded to a 911 call shortly after 5:15 p.m. and found a man dead from multiple gunshot wounds, said Jennifer Castro, police spokeswoman. 

Neighbors who filed outside as police vehicles swarmed the street said they knew little about the assisted-living home. An American flag hung from its front porch, where a man in a wheelchair sat while police entered and exited the building. The man was later escorted to a taxi on a wheelchair ramp that extended into a driveway. 

"We only know that someone was shot," said 14-year-old Isabel Munoz, who stood at the door of her family's nearby apartment with her mother, Tatiana.

The mother and daughter said the only neighborhood sound they heard before the police sirens was loud music that they believed came from the assisted-living home Tuesday afternoon. It was unusual, Munoz said: "It's usually quiet and everything."

Friends and family of the victim eventually gathered in front of the assisted-living home. Elmer Escalante described his cousin as an always-smiling family man in his early 60s. He was the father to four grown children who live in the Philippines and the grandfather to many grandchildren. 

"He was always very happy," Escalante said. "It's shocking." 

Police did not identify the man they took into custody, nor did they release details on any ties he might have to the assisted-living home. Charges had not yet been filed by late Tuesday.