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John Marvin Jr. has prior felony conviction for sex crime

Posted: November 24, 2012 - 5:48pm  |  Updated: November 25, 2012 - 12:08am

Editor’s note: The following story contains a description of an alleged crime of a sexual nature. Readers are encouraged to use their own discretion when deciding whether to read this article. The commenting feature has been disabled. Thank you for your understanding.

Before John Nick Marvin Jr. was convicted of first-degree murder for killing two police officers in Hoonah, he was previously convicted of a sex crime and was deemed a sex offender in need of treatment.

Court records available on microfiche show Marvin was charged in April 1993 with one felony count of attempted sexual abuse of a minor in the first degree for attempting to engage in sexual penetration with a person under 13 years old age.

Marvin was charged by then-Assistant District Attorney Louis Menendez, who is now a superior court judge in Juneau. (Menendez was excused early on from presiding over Marvin’s murder trial which took place in Juneau this and last month, as was another Juneau superior court judge, Philip Pallenberg. A superior court judge from Sitka, David George, presided over the murder trial.)

Marvin, who would have been 28 years old at the time, entered a ‘no contest’ plea to attempted sexual abuse of a minor. Court records differed as to whether he pleaded to that crime in the first degree or second degree.

Marvin was sentenced in July 1993 to serve 10 years in prison with four years suspended for the crime, meaning there was six years to serve. He was also placed on probation for five years after his release from prison.

Marvin was sentenced by then Juneau Superior Court Judge Walter Carpeneti, who is presently the chief justice of the Alaska Supreme Court.

The jury in the murder trial was not informed of Marvin’s prior felony since it would have been prejudicial and affected his right to a fair trial.

The older court records were previously unavailable, but were provided to the Empire on Friday via microfiche.

According to a discharge summary written by the Hiland Mountain & Meadow Creek Correctional Facility in Eagle River, Hoonah police received a report from a social worker on April 9, 1993, that Marvin had sexually abused a 9-year-old girl, whom he knew but was not related to.

The abuse spanned almost five years and began when the girl was 5 years old, the summary states.

The report specifies that Marvin is a sex offender who requires sex offender treatment. He had no other sex assault convictions, but at the time he did have four other convictions: two for assault in which he was fighting with his wife in 1990 and 1991; one conviction for failure to file an accident report in 1990; and another conviction of disorderly conduct in 1991.

The report details Marvin’s sexual offense patterns and history; progress in treatment; typical behavior patterns; relapse sequence; risk factors; and post-treatment recommendations.

“Mr. Marvin projects as a quiet, shy, nice guy on the surface; however, under this facade lies intense anger, jealousy, deviancy, physical and mental abuse towards family members, terrorist tactics to control family members and others, revenge fantasies, and alcohol and drug use,” the summary says under the typical behavior patterns section.

Marvin told police that he had an alcohol problem and that he was frequently drinking when he had sexual contact with his victim, the summary says. He had a history of “severe substance abuse” and a history of self-destructive behaviors, the report says.

The report said Marvin had a tendency to withdraw and to be secretive, and he lacked empathy.

“Failure to endure adversity by hiding and avoiding being responsible for his behavior and resolving his own problems. Demonstrates victim stance when confronted by others. ... Has difficulty dealing with past pains and fears. He appears to have cut off his emotions and awareness of the emotions of other. He tends to use alcohol to further suppress. He uses anger to control others and feel powerful.”

The discharge summary considered Marvin at “high risk” to re-offend and a danger to any community in which he resides. The jail recommended no contact with the victim or victim’s family; no unsupervised contact with female minors under 18; close supervision of relationships with women who have minor children in the home; no use of alcohol or drugs; and to attend mental health counseling which he pays for himself.

Marvin, now 47, was convicted by a jury earlier this month on two counts of first-degree murder for shooting and killing two Hoonah police officers in August 2010.

The two officers were fatally shot on the main street in Hoonah as they were socializing with their family members in a parking lot next to a liquor store.

Prosecutors argued Marvin shot them in cold blood from the second-story window of his nearby house, although the defense showed there was a ramp-up in tensions from previous police contacts.

Marvin is still awaiting sentencing, but is asking for a new trial on one matter through his attorney, public defender Eric Hedland.

 

New trial?

Hedland argues in a motion filed Nov. 5, two days after the jury reached its verdict, that the jury should not have made the special finding that Wallace was engaged in the performance of official duties when he was killed.

In addition to deciding whether Marvin committed first-degree murder, the jury was asked to find a sentencing enhancement that dealt with whether Wallace and Tokuoka were uniformed or otherwise clearly identified as police officers when they were fatally shot, and if they were engaged in the performance of official duties.

The jury announced that they did find that special enhancement in the case of Wallace, but not for Tokuoka.

At the time the officers were fatally shot, Wallace was in a police uniform and was driving a marked police vehicle, whereas Tokuoka was in plainclothes, driving a personal vehicle, and taking out the trash with his family before he went on duty.

That special finding is a sentencing enhancement that means Marvin will face a flat sentence of 99 years in prison for murdering Wallace. In contrast, Marvin will be facing a range from 20 to 99 years in prison for murdering Tokuoka, since the jury did not find the enhancement in his case.

Wallace had performed a faux traffic stop on the Tokuoka’s as they were taking out the trash so Wallace could introduce them to his mother, who was visiting from Florida and was doing a police ride-along.

While they were socializing, Wallace shined a flashlight into Marvin’s home after Tokuoka’s wife said she saw Marvin acting crazy in his house by banging a box up and down. Prosecutors said at trial the beam from the flashlight prompted Marvin, who was already feeling paranoid and under siege from police, to shoot the officers.

Hedland points out in his motion that Tokuoka’s widow, Haley Tokuoka, has filed a lawsuit against the city of Hoonah complaining that Wallace, while employed as a police officer for the city, acted illegally by conducting the “sham traffic stop,” and negligently flashed at light at Marvin’s house “for no reason.” Haley Tokuoka is seeking more than $100,000 in damages from the city through her attorney, Mark Choate.

“It was undisputed at trial that Anthony Wallace was, at the time that he was shot, socializing with the Tokuokas (sic) and not engaging in official duties,” Hedland wrote. “Thus, the jury must have found that his shining the light at Mr. Marvin’s house was a performance of an official duty (i.e., investigating, in his role as a peace officer, the information given to him by Haley Tokuoka). However, as noted, Haley Tokuoka asserted in her lawsuit that Anthony Wallace shines the flashlight at Mr. Marvin’s house for ‘no reason.’”

The state opposed the motion for a new trial, saying Wallace was on duty and patrolling the city of Hoonah when he was shot, even though he stopped his police vehicle to introduce his mother to the Tokuoka’s.

“A police officer can be engaged in the performance of official duties without being engaged with any particular person for any particular reason,” District Attorney David Brower wrote in his opposition. “A uniformed police officer on duty walking down the street on a traditional ‘beat’ might stop and talk to a store owner for 10 minutes. Someone might take that opportunity to shoot the officer.”

Marvin has a tentative sentencing date scheduled for February. Judge George will decide his sentence.

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

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