State and local briefly

Posted: Tuesday, April 25, 2000

Elderly woman attacked in nursing home

ANCHORAGE - A convicted sex offender walked into a nursing home during an Easter dinner, wheeled an 87-year-old woman with Alzheimer's disease into the facility's chapel and sexually assaulted her, Anchorage police say.

Rex Weston, 41, is accused of committing the assault Sunday night at the Providence Extended Care Center. He was charged with first-degree sexual assault, with bail set at $75,000.

Weston, from Anchorage, has a criminal history dating back to 1981, including convictions for sexual assault of a minor. He is listed in the state's registry of sex offenders.

State nursing home inspectors said Monday they knew of no other cases in Alaska where someone had been charged criminally with raping a nursing home resident.

Climber speaks about overcoming MS

JUNEAU - Three years ago, Eric Simons was diagnosed with relapsing-remitting multiple sclerosis. A year later, he climbed the highest volcano in Mexico. Simons takes the stage at 7 tonight at Centennial Hall to share his story.

Within weeks of his diagnosis in 1998, Simons lost feeling in his body and was partially paralyzed, but he improved. The environmental specialist, lawyer, father, husband and mountaineer from Colorado is currently training to scale Mount Aconcagua, the highest peak in the Argentine Andes.

Multiple sclerosis is a progressive autoimmune disease in which the body attacks its own central nervous system.

This evening's program will include an Abilities Fair, with vendors providing information on recreational opportunities for people of all abilities. The free event is sponsored by the National Multiple Sclerosis Society.

Red king crab permits overdue

JUNEAU - Local area fishermen should have returned red king crab permits by April 15, the state Department of Fish and Game said.

Crabbers who don't return permits or provide the department with catch data will be ineligible to get 2000-2001 personal use king crab permits for the Juneau area, said Audra Brase, fisheries biologist. Catch information may be mailed or given over the phone at 465-4250.

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