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Troopers investigating 2 deaths in Western Alaska village of Emmonak

BETHEL -- The deaths of two people in the Western Alaska village of Emmonak are under investigation by Alaska State Troopers, the agency said Thursday.

Troopers were releasing little information, including whether the deaths were being treated as suspicious.

"Troopers have responded to the village and are trying to determine the circumstances surrounding the deaths," troopers spokeswoman Beth Ipsen said in an email. "Further information will be released as the investigation develops."

The deaths were reported to troopers around 2 a.m. Thursday, she said.

The two who died are a longtime couple, said Emmonak Mayor Wilbur Hootch. They died at a home they shared with others, he said. A village public safety officer secured the home before troopers arrived, he said.

Emmonak, a hub village of about 760 people at the mouth of the Yukon River near the Bering Sea, has a trooper post but no one has been on duty there the last couple of weeks, the mayor said. Troopers usually are stationed there two weeks on, two weeks off. Troopers came from St. Mary's to investigate, he said.

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