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Crime & Courts

Man charged with killing cousin in 2015 Nelson Lagoon rollover crash

  • Author: Alaska News
  • Updated: September 30, 2016
  • Published March 7, 2016

A man has been charged with committing a criminally negligent homicide in an Aleutians East Borough community, nearly a year after a rollover crash that killed a relative of his.

Court records indicate 24-year-old Emanuel Thomas Johnson faces two more felony counts in the case: manslaughter and leaving the scene of an accident without assisting the injured. He is also charged with DUI, reckless driving, reckless endangerment, leaving the scene of an injury accident and failing to give immediate notice of an accident.

Anchorage District Attorney Clint Campion said in an email Monday that the charges are in connection with an April 3, 2015, crash in Nelson Lagoon -- a community of about 40 people on the Alaska Peninsula -- in which 21-year-old Nelson Lagoon resident Elijah Ethan Johnson was killed.

"Emanuel Johnson was Elijah Johnson's cousin," Campion wrote. "Elijah was 21 at the time of his death."

Alaska State Troopers said in a dispatch at the time that they were notified shortly after 10:30 a.m. on April 3 of the wreck, in which a vehicle overturned near the east end of the local airstrip's runway.

"The vehicle had been traveling on the airstrip at a high rate of speed before the vehicle lost control and overturned several times, ejecting (Elijah Johnson) from the vehicle," troopers wrote. "(His) body was located in a grassy area outside the vehicle."

According to the dispatch, troopers spoke with a male who admitted being at the vehicle's wheel and had suffered minor injuries during the crash.

"Alcohol was a factor in the incident and seat belts were not used in the rollover," troopers wrote.

Campion said an arrest warrant had been issued for Emanuel Johnson on Thursday. He wasn't yet in custody Monday afternoon, according to a list of active warrants maintained by troopers.

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