Alaska Digest

Posted: Thursday, July 05, 2007

One injured, one arrested after fight

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JUNEAU - An early morning knife fight in Marine Park sent one man to jail and another to Bartlett Regional Hospital.

Police said Juneau resident Leroy Jacobs, 29, pulled a large survival knife and cut another man across his face shortly before 3:48 a.m. Wednesday morning.

The men were arguing at the time, police said.

The victim was treated at the scene by Capital City Fire and Rescue before being transported to Bartlett, Sgt. Tom Bates said.

Police arrested Jacobs in the 200 block of Front Street sometime later on a charge of second-degree assault. He was lodged at the Lemon Creek Correctional Center without bail.

Man charged in shooting that wounded 5 people

ANCHORAGE, Alaska - An 18-year-old Anchorage man was scheduled to appear in court Wednesday in connection with a weekend shooting that wounded five people.

Jared Houser turned himself in to police Tuesday and was charged with assault and misconduct with a weapon.

Houser is accused of firing an assault rifle at six young people Sunday night as he passed them in a moving vehicle, police said. Five of the six were injured by the large-caliber ammunition typically used in assault rifles, police said.

Police say the victims are all expected to recover.

"We are really lucky we are not investigating five new homicides," said police Sgt. Ken McCoy.

Police said they believe a dispute over a marijuana sale provoked the shooting.

Houser, a passenger in the vehicle, sprayed 10 to 20 shots in the direction of the victims, McCoy said. Police have not yet recovered the weapon and are looking for the driver of the vehicle.

Four of the victims are 17 and police would not release their names.

Allen Franklin-SantaCrose, 20, also was wounded, and Marquis Hiriams, 19, was in the group but was not wounded.

Truck rolls, spills fuel into Kenai pond

ANCHORAGE - About 200 gallons of diesel fuel that spilled early Tuesday into a pond that drains into the Kenai River was stopped from entering the river by an absorbent boom, state environmental officials said.

The spill occurred after the driver of a truck headed northbound on the Sterling Highway lost control and rolled the truck near Cooper Landing, spilling about 20 gallons of oil along with the diesel.

The Davis Block & Concrete Co. truck was hauling a shipment of concrete block and an empty concrete trailer from Soldotna to Anchorage. The truck ran off the road, damaging its fuel tanks, causing the leak.

The semitrailer contained a total of about 380 gallons of diesel in two saddle tanks; only one ruptured.

The truck and trailers have been removed from the site, and cleanup efforts are under way at the pond, which empties into the Kenai River through a culvert.

Davis Block & Concrete Co. was in the process late Tuesday of retaining a spill response company to clean up the pond and surrounding area, state officials said.

Mine's cyanide plant receives permits

FAIRBANKS - The Fort Knox Gold Mine received state permits on Tuesday to build a large cyanide plant that company officials say will extend the life of the open-pit mine by several years.

Cyanide, a toxic chemical, is the key to removing specks of gold from very low-grade ore. The process is called heap leaching and requires a weak cyanide solution.

The new facility is expected to cover more than 300 acres in the Walter Creek drainage area. The mine is 26 miles northeast of Fairbanks.

The cyanide facility will allow Fort Knox's local operating company, Fairbanks Gold Mining Inc., to process a stockpile of more than 29 million tons of lower grade ore, and start further developments of the mine.

With the increase in cyanide use, the company expects the mine to keep producing through 2015.

The Department of Natural Resources permits do not go into effect until Fairbanks Gold Mining secures a $34,314,000 bond to cover the cost of reclaiming the land after the facility is discontinued.

Use of cyanide near water sources was a contentious issue in the granting of the permits.

Last winter, a small amount of cyanide seeped from a dam built to contain waste at Fort Knox. Multiple tests confirmed that the cyanide did not contaminate local water supplies or groundwater, and Fairbanks Gold Mining Inc., the local mine operator, spent around $2.5 million to improve seep monitoring after the incident.

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