Alaska Digest

Posted: Tuesday, April 03, 2007

Federal jury indicts man for fish catch

Sound off on the important issues at

ANCHORAGE - Robert Becker of Juneau has been indicted by a federal grand jury in Anchorage on charges of violating federal fisheries protection laws, acting U.S. Attorney Karen Loeffler announced.

The three-count indictment named Becker, 35, as the sole defendant.

Between November 2004 and January 2005, the indictment alleges, Becker made three unlawful fishing trips to the Fairweather Grounds in the Gulf of Alaska, catching a total of about 17,000 pounds of fish.

At the time he made the trips, the areas he fished were closed to directed fishing for demersal shelf rockfish. Becker falsified his fish landing tickets and his logbook to reflect that the fishing took place in other areas that were open, the indictment alleges.

The total wholesale value of Becker's unlawfully caught fish was nearly $25,000, according to the indictment, which was handed down March 21.

Becker faces a maximum sentence per count of five years in prison and a fine of $20,000. Under federal guidelines, the actual sentence would be based upon the seriousness of the offenses, the retail value of the fish and any prior criminal history.

The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration's National Marine Fisheries Service Office of Law Enforcement conducted the investigation leading to the indictment.

Thousands of ballots marked undeliverable

FAIRBANKS - Almost 4,000 ballots of more than 20,000 mailed in Fairbanks for a special election by post have been returned as undeliverable.

The ballots were mailed by a printing company in March to Fairbanks voters deciding whether to postpone an impending property tax cut.

The number of ballots corresponded to the state's voter registration list. But 3,926 were returned to Fairbanks City Hall with yellow labels that read, "return to sender, insufficient address, unable to forward."

It's an indicator that Fairbanks contains fewer registered voters than the 21,695 on file with the Alaska Division of Elections, said Mayor Steve Thompson. People have likely left and failed to inform the state, he said.

The Alaska Division of Elections will be able to flag the faulty addresses after the by-mail election wraps up, according to elections supervisor Shelly Growden. But the division can purge only the names that make their way through a complicated set of state and federal voter registration regulations, she said.

In some cases, for example, a name can be removed only after no contact has been received for four years, she said. The division can remove the names of those who have died, been convicted of a felony or registered in another state.

"We cannot simply just remove a voter from the registration because we get something as 'undeliverable' for them," Growden said.

Thompson said he knows former residents who remain on the registration list years after they left Fairbanks. Purging the voter rolls would allow for more accurate voter turnout counts, he said.

Preschooler calls 911 to get help for mother

KETCHIKAN - Princess Monique Clevenger is only 4, but the Ketchikan girl knew exactly what to do when her mother screamed in pain after falling in the tub. She dialed 911.

Crystal Clevenger slipped during her shower Thursday morning, knocking over a box of children's bath toys, her back landing hard on the angled objects.

"I couldn't move. I was screaming and crying, and yelling, 'Princess, get help!"' Crystal said.

The mother of three thought her back was broken. No one else was home, so it was up to Princess to help.

The girl dialed 911 and remained on the phone until police officers and medics arrived a few minutes later at their apartment.

Crystal Clevenger was taken to Ketchikan General Hospital, where she learned she had not broken bones or other serious injuries. But she did have some cuts and several large bruises on her back, sides and on her right arm, which took a hard hit when she tried to stop her fall.

Clevenger was given pain medication and sent home to rest.

Trending this week:


© 2018. All Rights Reserved.  | Contact Us