After a review prompted by public outrage, the Fairbanks district attorney’s office announced Thursday it will not reopen a dismissed rape and kidnapping case against Daniel Selovich, also known as Pirate.
The dismissal of a 2015 case against Selovich, who bears a distinct facial tattoo, was “extremely frustrating but appropriate under the law,” the Alaska Department of Law said in a statement.
In 2015, Selovich was charged in a brutal and high-profile case that alleged he held a woman captive at a cabin near Manley Hot Springs for five weeks of torture and sexual assault.
In July 2016, the victim died and the case was dismissed.
At the time, the then-district attorney in Fairbanks said the woman was a “necessary witness” to the case.
Pirate’s reappearance in Fairbanks in recent weeks had led to intense online tracking of the man, cases of mistaken identity and widespread requests that the district attorney revisit the decision to dismiss the case.
“Very recently, Mr. Pirate has been seen by residents in Fairbanks, prompting public inquiry and concern regarding community safety and the dismissal of the 2015 case,” the statement from the Department of Law said.
The review of the case was conducted “in response to citizens’ concerns,” Fairbanks District Attorney Joe Dallaire said in the statement.
The statement did not explain more about the legal underpinning of the decision.