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Officers involved in Thursday's Anchorage shooting identified

Alaska Dispatch
Anchorage Police Department photo

The names of the officers involved in Thursday’s shooting at Merrill Field Inn in Anchorage were released Sunday.

Officer Joel Breiner, a 14-year Anchorage Police Department veteran, and Officer Dan Thyen, a 15-1/2 year APD veteran, both returned fire after Jason Barnum shot at them while they questioned occupants in the hotel room over a string of burglaries. Barnum struck Officer Thyen in the back, which resulted in a grazing wound.

He was taken to the hospital and released two hours later. He is “in good spirits and is doing well during his recovery at home,” according to the press release.

The standoff shut down traffic on busy Anchorage streets and resulted in the evacuation of the hotel, with well over 2 dozen officers reporting to the scene.

On Friday, Barnum, 37, was charged with attempted murder in the first degree and two counts of assault in the third degree. His bail was set at $500,000 cash. Police said they don’t know why Barnum shot at the officers. He admitted to being a heroin addict in charging documents; Lt. Anthony Henry said police have reason to suspect that he was high during the shooting.

Read more about the incident, here.