Posted: Sunday, January 21, 2001

Douglas Indian Association meets Monday

JUNEAU --A special meeting of the general membership of the Douglas Indian Association (DIA) has been called by the tribal council and is scheduled for Monday at 6:30 p.m. at Cedar Park Recreation Hall.

Dorothy Owen urges all DIA members to attend to hear both sides of a debate about recent council elections and to "better understand the issues that have been recently misrepresented to the press and the general public."

"It is the sincere hope of the council that this meeting will not only clarify issues in a proper tribal forum, but also will enable members to discuss and plan for conducting a new, fair and impartial election that all can accept."

For details call 364-3425.

Two die in Koyukuk shooting

ANCHORAGE -- A 36-year-old man and an infant he was holding in his arms died in an early morning shooting Saturday in the village of Koyukuk.

Alaska State Troopers said Fabian Pilot and three-month-old Stephan James Pilot were shot in the Yukon River village 300 miles west of Fairbanks. Troopers do not know the relationship between the baby and Fabian Pilot.

Trooper spokesman Greg Wilkinson said a suspect, Norman Lolnipz, 19, of Koyukuk, has been detained but has not been charged. Wilkinson said troopers know of no motive for the shooting.

The baby was declared dead at the scene. Fabian Pilot was medivaced to Fairbanks Memorial Hospital in critical condition and was pronounced dead at 8 a.m.

Tug crew relieves Coast Guard of freighter

ANCHORAGE -- A private tug boat has taken over the job of towing a freighter stranded in the Bering Sea to Dutch Harbor.

Coast Guard officials said the 4,000 shaft-horsepower James Dunlap of Dutch Harbor reached the freighter Alam Selaras on Friday morning and took over the tow job from the cutter Alex Haley.

The Alex Haley took the 593-foot bulk carrier loaded with grain in tow Wednesday afternoon. The Malaysian-flagged ship was en route from Vancouver, British Columbia, to Japan when its main engine quit Tuesday about 125 miles north of Dutch Harbor.

Coast Guard officials said the ships should arrive in Dutch Harbor on Sunday if the current weather holds.

Anchorage man gets death sentence

DEADWOOD, S.D. -- A judge on Friday sentenced an Anchorage man to death for last year's brutal slaying of 19-year-old Chester A. Poage of Spearfish.

Briley Piper, 20, pleaded guilty earlier this month to murder, kidnapping and other charges. But the plea was not enough to spare him from capital punishment.

Handing down the sentence Friday afternoon, Circuit Judge Warren Johnson said he had given the case much thought because he, and not a jury, had to decide Piper's fate.

Piper had waived his right to a jury trial, giving Johnson the responsibility to decide whether Piper would be sentenced to life in prison without parole or death.

Johnson said photos from the crime scene were some of the worst he had ever seen.

He set Piper's execution for the week of Aug. 6, but that will be delayed because a state Supreme Court review is automatic.

Piper apologized to Poage's family on Friday and said he would take whatever sentence he got.

Piper, Elijah Page, 18, of Athens, Texas, and Darrell Hoadley, 20, of Lead, were all charged with murder, kidnapping, first-degree robbery, first-degree burglary and grand theft.

Poage's body was discovered April 22 in Higgins Gulch, three miles west of Spearfish. He had been killed about a month earlier.

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