Alaska State Troopers

        Sunday was an exceptionally bad day for residents of Kasilof. Three of its own were killed in two separate outdoor accidents.

Mid Sunday afternoon the Alaska State Troopers were called to the Kasilof River, where two men were found dead about a mile upstream from the river mouth.

A Sterling teenager was killed Monday evening in an ATV accident.

According to Trooper reports, 13-year-old Tori Verba was riding her ATV on Robinson Loop near Higher Ground when she lost control and crashed.

She was pronounced dead at the scene by EMS personnel from Central Emergency Services. Verba was wearing a helmet. Troopers continue to investigate the crash.

A Friday evening snowmachine ride turned into a race for safety after two riders were apparently shot at by a third man.According to the Alaska State Troopers online dispatch, Soldotna AST headquarters received a report of the snowmachiners being shot at a little after 5 p.m. in the vicinity of Soldotna Creek.Responding troopers identified 65-year-old John Spinka of Soldotna as the alleged shooter.Spinka was booked into Wildwood Pretrial Facility on charges of Assault in the Third Degree. He is being held without bail. 

An Anchor Point man was killed in a one-vehicle accident on the Seward Highway near Moose Pass Wednesday afternoon.

At about a quarter of three, 46-year-old Marc Roderick was driving his 2007 Kenworth northbound on the highway near mile 34, pulling a trailer with an excavator on it.

The Alaska State Troopers report that the Kenworth left the roadway and struck the rock wall, causing the heavy equipment on the trailer to lurch forward, crushing the cab of the truck.

Roderick was pronounced dead on the scene. Next of kin have been notified.

On Tuesday night Alaska State Troopers were summoned to Duke Street in Nikiski after reports of a verbal disturbance.

According to an online dispatch, after an investigation the troopers arrested 41-year-old Michael Ohms on two charges of animal cruelty, violating a protective order, criminal mischief and criminal trespass.

Efforts continue to locate a Wisconsin man who went missing when his boat capsized on the Kenai River Monday evening.

The missing man was identified by Alaska State Troopers as 68-year-old Daniel Hass of Algoma, Wisconsin.

Two other men were rescued after their boat overturned near Moose Medows. Troopers ID'd them as 68-year-old Charles Bohman and 64-year-old Lawrence Paul, both also of Algoma.

The mystery remains for a third day of a Palmer man who went missing late Friday night along the Seward Highway.

The Alaska State Troopers report online that 56-year-old Earl “Rocky” Ashworth III of Palmer had walked away in an unknown direction from his camp near the Hope Cutoff.

Shaylon Cochran/KDLL

 

With the state of Alaska emerging from the financial doldrums brought by low oil prices, one area of the budget that may soon see more spending is law enforcement. That was the message residents had for Senator Peter Micciche at a town hall meeting in Kenai Monday night.

 

 


Thursday was an especially deadly day on the roads near the Sterling Highway.

Yesterday around mile 58.7 afternoon at about 1:23 p.m. Troopers received a report of a rock that went through the windshield of a Volkswagen GTI hatchback, striking the middle passenger in the back, before bouncing back out of the car. Killed was 8-year-old Noah Schwebach of Eagle River.

Though the rock was about the size of a volleyball no one else in the Hatchback was injured. Next of kin was on scene.

With the annual increase in traffic from visitors from off the Kenai Peninsula, this is the time of year counterfeit currency often starts showing up in ever-increasing volume.

The Alaska State Troopers report that a fake $20 bill was recovered from a convenience store in Cooper Landing last week.

Troopers from Seward responded last Tuesday and found out that the bill was used sometime over the previous weekend.

One man was killed and another suffered life-threatening injuries in a two-motorcycle accident Tuesday night. The crash closed the Sterling Highway for a time near mile 115 around 10 p.m.

According to an Alaska State Trooper dispatch, the men were riding separate 2007 Harley Davidsons when they lost control in a corner, went off the road and crashed in the ditch.

Dead at the scene was 62-year-old Thomas Clinton Salmon of Soldotna.

The State Medical Examiner is attempting to determine the cause of death of an inmate at Wildwood Correctional Center last week. According to an Alaska State Trooper dispatch, the inmate, 57 year old Leslie Aveoganna was found by staff lying on the third floor of Building 10, unresponsive.

Nikiski EMS responded and attempted to revive Aveoganna but were not able to.

Troopers report that nothing suspicious was found at the scene.

The driver of a tour bus that caused a fatal crash on the Seward Highway in 2015 has been indicted by an Anchorage grand jury. Sixty-three-year-old Charles Curtis of Wasilla was charged with one count of criminally negligent homicide and two counts of assault in the second degree. In an announcement, the district attorney also added nine counts of fourth degree assault. The indictment was announced Friday.

Redoubt Reporter

Two Soldotna men got a welcome, if unexpected lift home from the Alaska State Troopers Monday afternoon.

The two men, Donald Joachim and Benjamin Nabinger, had just finished a hike across the Harding Ice Field from Seward and found themselves stuck once arriving on the west side when they could not cross the Skilak River.

The Alaska State Troopers were notified that the men were stranded at about 1:24 p.m., and the pair were rescued by the AST's Helo 3 and delivered to the Soldotna Airport by 2:30 p.m.

 

A Nikolaevsk man is dead and one Alaska State Trooper is injured after an officer-involved shooting Saturday evening. Troopers received a report that 42-year-old Nikolai Yakunin was in contact with a female, a violation of his probation conditions.

The latest Alaska State Trooper Citizen Academy on the Kenai Peninsula is under way. Lieutenant Dane Gilmore of the Soldotna trooper post says the 12-week program is designed to help citizens learn about the role of troopers in the community.

"The idea is to create community awareness of the equipment and resources and limitations of the AST and the criminal justice system overall," he said.

He says the academy is important partially to dispel some misconceptions people have about the troopers.

Friday night proved to be just a little too much for one Kenai man. After being asked to leave the Duck Inn at Red Diamond, the 61-year-old reportedly hit several other parked cars before making it out on to Kalifornsky Beach Road.

Alaska State Troopers caught up with William Cloer at about 9 p.m. on Bridge Access Road as he drove towards Kenai in his Chevy Suburban.

The body found washed ashore at the mouth of the Kenai River (last) Tuesday has positively been identified as that of a Colorado man who went missing more than a month earlier in Soldotna.

The State Medical Examiner's Office announced this (Monday) morning that the body was indeed that of Phillip Kurt Keltner. The Keltner family has been notified by the medical examiner's office in Anchorage and his remains have been released to them.

Almost two weeks ago in Anchor Point, a man accidentally shot himself. According to the Alaska State Troopers, he was found in a pool of blood. But he survived, largely because of specialized training the responding troopers recently received from the Alaska Department of Health and Social Services.

Late Tuesday afternoon the Alaska State Troopers recovered a body from the mouth of the Kenai River, near the north shore. The body was found at about 4 p.m. Troopers have sent the body to the Alaska Medical Examiner's Office for positive identification.

No other information was officially available, however, in early August, 63-year-old Phillip Kurt Keltner, of Colorado, disappeared when he was swept downriver after the skiff he was in capsized. According to the troopers, he went under and was not seen again.

Searchers looked for an hour and a half on Saturday morning after a three-year-old child went missing from a home on Chas Ross Road in Sterling.

According to an Alaska State Trooper dispatch, four agencies, including Wildlife Troopers, state park rangers and Central Emergency Services, joined good Samaritans in the search, after the preschooler and his dog were reported missing at about 8 Saturday morning.

The Soldotna Public Safety Communications Center also used a "Reverse 9-1-1" phone call system called "Rapid Notify" to alert residents in the area of Chas Ross Road.