Alaska Digest

Posted: Monday, August 08, 2005

Man arrested for pointing rifle

JUNEAU - A 22-year-old Juneau man was arrested for third-degree assault Saturday night after reportedly pointing a loaded .308 rifle at a 24-year-old acquaintance during a dispute, police said.

Clifford German was lodged at the Lemon Creek Correctional Center on no bail and was also charged with misconduct involving a weapon in the fourth degree for being intoxicated while in possession of a firearm.

According to police, four men were drinking at a residence in the Mendenhal Valley when an argument started. German told the acquaintance to leave and pointed the gun at him, police said.

The other two men wrestled the gun away and left with the 24-year-old, and the rifle.

Juneau drug store burglarized Sunday

JUNEAU - Police are investigating an alleged burglary at Juneau Drug, just before 4 a.m. Sunday.

Officers responded to the scene two months after an alarm company notified them of the break-in. Police found the building empty, but discoverd signs of forced entry.

The initial investitation suggests that two people were involved, police said. It is unknown if any drugs were stolen.

Anyone with more information is encouraged to contact police.

Ketchikan borough auctions land

KETCHIKAN - Fourteen pieces of property acquired by the Ketchikan Gateway Borough after a forest products company went bankrupt were auctioned for $3.3 million.

The auction generated $3,348,000 in bids on 222 acres at Mud Bay, Carroll Inlet and the east side of Ward Cove.

The total includes four parcels that received offers of less than the assessed value. Those bids are subject to review by the borough assembly. Excluding those four properties, the auction generated $2,160,500 for the borough.

Borough Mayor Mike Salazar said he was pleased with the sales.

"I think it gave us an idea of some of the land values and generated $2.1 million without the questionable parcels, the ones that the assembly will have deal with," he said. "It allowed everybody in the community to bid on it."

The assessed value of all the property was about $4 million.

The borough acquired the land in 2002 and 2003 after Gateway Forest Products went bankrupt. The parcels originally were owned by the Ketchikan Pulp Co.

Designated driver dies in accident

FAIRBANKS - An Army medic acting as a designated driver for friends heading to a party crashed into a light pole and died.

Staff Sgt. Kerry Brammer, 38, died in the one-car accident at about 10 p.m. Friday on a Richardson Highway off ramp.

Four passengers were injured: Jacob Thigpen, 28, and Jason Priest, 23, of Fort Wainwright, and Lance Chace, 23, and Bonnie Thumma, 22, of Fairbanks.

Police are trying to determine how fast Brammer was traveling. His body was sent to Fort Richardson Army Base for an autopsy and toxicology examination.

The bulk of the impact was on the driver's side door. It demolished the 2001 Grand Am and cracked the light pole, said Officer Gary Korshin.

The car was one of three vehicles carrying friends to a nightclub to celebrate Priest's upcoming marriage. Brammer was one of the designated drivers, his family and friends said.

Utility orders ribbons pulled from poles

KODIAK - Danielle Curry replaced yellow ribbons on Kodiak utility poles after someone festooned them with anti-war stickers. Now, all displays on the poles are coming down.

The Kodiak Electric Association told Currie, whose son is serving in Iraq, that she must find other locations for the yellow ribbons and clear the poles along Mill Bay Road.

"I understand," Currie said. "I didn't want KEA to be in the middle of all this. I didn't know there was going to be a controversy over something as simple as supporting the troops.

"It's not saying I support the war, which I do, but that's not the point. The point is I support my son, who's serving his country."

Fairbanks seeks to bolster rural ties

FAIRBANKS - The military's proposed gutting of Eielson Air Force Base has motivated Fairbanks North Star Borough officials to seek ways to soften the economic impact, and they're looking hard at rural Alaska.

"We have to reach out to the Interior and northern regions of the state and provide an economic and cultural hub for them," said Mayor Jim Whitaker.

The Pentagon has proposed to strip Eielson of aircraft and most of its 3,000 military personnel. The Air Force had an economic impact of $374 million on the region last year.

The borough has contracted with Barbara Hewitt to meet with officials in Kotzebue, Nome and Yukon River villages to find out what the Fairbanks area can do to attract more fly-in visitors.

"We used to be the main hub for all of northern Alaska, but we've lost a lot of that over the last two decades," Hewitt said. "We want to re-establish that connection."



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