Jerzy Shedlock

A 31-year-old Anchorage man faces 27 felonies related to child pornography and child sex abuse, according to the Alaska Attorney General’s Office. Prosecutors accuse Christopher Olson of possessing and distributing as well as producing child porn. But the majority of charges allege sexual abuse and exploitation of children, according to an indictment filed in Anchorage Superior Court on Thursday. The indictment says the abuse occurred between April 2015 and Jan. 27. The court document does not indicate the exact age of the alleged victims; it states only that they were younger than 16 or 18. If convicted, Olson likely would face a prison term of 25 to 35 years, and a potential maximum sentence of 99 years, prosecutors said. Olson is in custody, but authorities are asking anyone with...Jerzy Shedlock
One person died early Friday in a single-vehicle rollover crash at Dimond Boulevard and C Street in South Anchorage. Anchorage police said the vehicle rolled several times at about 3:30 a.m., struck a light pole and caught fire at the intersection. Besides the deceased occupant, there did not appear to be anyone else involved in the crash. Chris Bracken said a four-door sedan went south on C Street at extreme speed -- faster than responding police vehicles -- as he watched from the back porch of his second-story apartment on the west side of C Street near 76th Avenue. Trees blocked his view of what caused the accident, but Bracken said he heard tires skidding on gravel and then saw an explosion followed by a small, rolling fireball. He said the burning wreckage continued through the...Jerzy Shedlock
A federal judge in Anchorage has paved the way for a jury trial in a wrongful death lawsuit brought against the city by the family of Shane Tasi, fatally shot by an Anchorage police officer in June 2012. Following the ruling by the judge, the family’s attorney called for the city to settle rather than prolong the court battle. U.S. District Judge Sharon Gleason issued an order last week ruling on all pending motions for summary judgment from the case’s plaintiffs as well as its multiple defendants – the Municipality of Anchorage, the Anchorage Police Department and three officers. All parties asked judge Gleason to rule on certain issues without a full trial. Many of the family’s claims survived the rulings, and local attorney Phillip Weidner argued the facts Gleason outlined favor...Jerzy Shedlock
When two of the stars of the Discovery Channel's "Alaskan Bush People" were sentenced to jail time in January for lying on Permanent Fund dividend applications, they were just one example of the hundreds or even thousands of cases of suspected PFD fraud reported every year to the Department of Revenue's Criminal Division. In the past 10 years, investigators have received in excess of 1,500 tips a year reporting cases of possible PFD fraud. The number of tips received, people fined and amount of money recovered has fluctuated year to year, but the peaks and valleys aren’t random, said investigator Shawn Stendevad. “Various numbers change based on dividend amount, amount of press in a given year, investigator turnover, policy changes, etc.” said Stendevad, PFD investigations supervisor. The...Jerzy Shedlock
As the Anchorage Police Department works to fill its ranks, efforts are also underway to ensure it more accurately represents the city’s racial diversity. Currently, the department is mostly white. “It’s going to be a challenge for the department as well as the community,” said Anchorage Police Chief Chris Tolley. “We don’t want to just recruit bodies. We want a staff that reflects the diversity of Anchorage. So what we’re doing is taking a hard look at different groups and making sure we’re doing our best to get good representations for each of them.” Mayor Ethan Berkowitz has lauded Anchorage’s diverse population -- his inauguration ceremony incorporated his family and displayed the city’s cultural melting pot. His special assistant’s tasks include focusing on community diversity . He...Jerzy Shedlock
With family members from both sides of a domestic murder case watching, the sentencing of 24-year-old Joshua Almeda was postponed for a second time. Almeda shot and killed his girlfriend , Breanna Moore, in his family’s Anchorage Hillside home in 2014. Police found Moore dead on June 26 in Almeda's bedroom. Almeda’s mother called 911 around 12:30 a.m. after she awoke to her son’s screams. She went to his bedroom in the basement and found Moore with a gunshot wound to the head and a handgun lying nearby. Almeda’s sentencing had been initially set back in July for two days in October, when he pleaded guilty to a single count of second-degree murder . The charge carries a sentencing range of 10 to 99 years. Sentencing set for this week was rescheduled for April. “It’s extremely frustrating...Jerzy Shedlock
Ever since Alaska State Troopers said last year that they would close down their post in the Southcentral Alaska community of Girdwood, the town has been searching for a public safety solution. Now, Girdwood's preferred method of maintaining law enforcement calls upon neighboring Whittier to provide two officers, who will be paid for by the taxpayers of the ski town. “Quite honestly, we don’t have another alternative,” said Sam Daniel, Girdwood Board of Supervisors co-chair. “If Whittier doesn’t come through, we’re going to be in a world of hurt. They’re the only viable option.” Hiring the Whittier officers is inching closer to reality. The Anchorage Assembly will take comments and vote on an ordinance Tuesday that would submit a ballot proposition to Girdwood voters during the April...Jerzy Shedlock
The 26-year-old brother of an Anchorage homicide victim has been sentenced to nearly two years in prison on a federal gun charge, stemming from a search of an apartment after the January 2015 shooting that turned up five firearms. Christopher Haynes pleaded guilty in August to being a felon in possession of guns. He admitted, as part of the agreement, to jointly possessing “several” firearms at the scene of the home invasion robbery that left two dead, according to the U.S. Attorney's Office. Christian Haynes, 27, and Krystal Hawk, 23, were found shot in a fourplex on the 6000 block of East 41st Court, off Baxter Road in East Anchorage on Jan. 27, 2015. It would be more than seven months until the state charged 23-year-old Michael Dorrel Kelvin Reynold , also known as “Boogie,” with two...Jerzy Shedlock
A couple accused of dealing Spice and methamphetamine, whose Winnebago was raided last week in Wasilla, had previously sold drugs to a police informant in a Midtown Anchorage RV park on three occasions, according to charges filed in connection with the case. Anchorage police accuse Mark Purcella, 46, and Carol Halley, 50, of selling Spice and methamphetamine out of the motor home. A press release Wednesday night said officers raided the vehicle on Jan. 15 and recovered 426 grams of Spice, worth more than $6,000. But the charges filed two days before the raid show undercover officers and informants working together to build a drug case against the couple. The meth charges are separate from the Spice bust -- the Municipality of Anchorage handles the Spice charges, said Deputy District...Jerzy Shedlock
Almost three weeks after Linda Skeek was last seen alive, detectives investigating her disappearance found evidence of blood throughout the house that she shared with her husband, as well as a mark "consistent with a human bite mark" on his arm, according to court documents. Now, he's accused of killing her and trying to cover up the crime. Police said Wednesday evening that Thomas Skeek Jr., 33, had been charged with first- and second-degree murder, as well as tampering with physical evidence, in the disappearance of Linda Skeek, 32. He was arrested Wednesday after detectives searched the Skeek home and a vehicle. Detectives said they found what they believe to be blood in both the home and the vehicle. Blood evidence was found near the entrance to a basement crawl space, splattered on a...Jerzy Shedlock

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