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Arrest made in connection with Juneau shooting

Posted: December 21, 2011 - 1:10pm  |  Updated: December 22, 2011 - 1:10am

Police say a Juneau man has been arrested for allegedly shooting another man in the face with a handgun.

The Juneau Police Department said in a release they arrested Kenneth Edward Nalan, 35, on Wednesday for second-degree assault, a class ‘B’ felony. The victim, John Nicholas Duran, 33, is in stable condition in a Seattle hospital, the release states.

The police investigation in the case is still ongoing, said Lt. Kris Sell, one of the investigating officers.

“We served a couple of search warrants, we’re still in the investigation phase, and there’s still work to be done because we haven’t spoken with the man who was injured yet,” Sell said in an interview at JPD headquarters Wednesday evening. “His medical condition is not going to allow us to do that right away. But we do consult with the district attorney during investigations like this, and we made the decision with the prosecutor to go ahead and arrest Kenneth Nalan for assault in the second degree.”

Police have not said what prompted the Tuesday night shooting, but Sell said Duran was an invited guest in Nalan’s home at the time of the assault. Nalan was hosting a small get-together at his residence, and alcohol was being consumed, she said.

“It was a small get-together that was still underway,” Sell said.

Duran was shot with a .357 handgun, she added.

Sell said the two men knew each other and described their relationship as “friends, but not close friends.”

“They were not strangers by any means,” she said.

JPD first responded to a report of a man shot at a home in the 3000 block of Glacierwood Drive, which is in Mendenhall Valley, at 10:39 p.m. Tuesday.

Officers found a man, later identified as Duran, with a gunshot wound to the face, the release stated. Capital City Fire and Rescue responded and took the man to Bartlett Regional Hospital.

BRH spokesman Jim Strader said the man was then medevaced to Harborview Medical Center, a Seattle hospital.

“He was in critical condition, and he was medevaced,” Strader said Wednesday, though his condition has since improved, according to the JPD statement.

Sell said the full extent of Duran’s injuries are unknown at this time.

“The injury is to the facial area, and we don’t know the full extent of the damage of Mr. Duran’s head,” she said. “We’re waiting to get some medical information about that. We do know that there was an entrance wound in the face.”

Police are still investigating the details of the case, but “we are confident in enough of the details to go ahead with the arrest,” Sell said. “... We’re confident that the assault in the second degree is an appropriate charge.”

Nalan was taken to Lemon Creek Correctional Center without bail, Sell said.

• Contact reporter Emily Russo Miller at 523-2263 or at emily.miller@juneauempire.com.

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