Alaska Digest

Posted: Sunday, November 05, 2006

False bomb threat called in to airport

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JUNEAU - Juneau police responded to a fake bomb threat made against Juneau International Airport early Saturday morning, police officials said.

The department received the threat by phone at 3:02 a.m. They met with airport officials and the FBI, then searched the property. Nothing was found, and no flights were disrupted, police said.

Investigators are looking into the possibility that the threat was related to a recent string of fake bomb threats made against other airports in Southeast Alaska.

Alaska misses gay benefits deadline

ANCHORAGE - Another court deadline has passed, and state government officials have not yet submitted revised regulations to provide benefits to gay couples.

Anchorage Superior Court Judge Stephanie Joannides on Thursday granted an extension to state officials to file after the state had not submitted the new rules by a deadline Wednesday.

Rather than meet the new deadline, which was Friday, attorneys for the state asked Joannides for another extension, this time until Monday.

Also on Friday, the Alaska Supreme Court denied the state's request for an emergency stay of Joannides' order to change earlier draft regulations.

Department of Law spokesman Mark Morones said state attorneys now are simultaneously preparing the lower court's ordered changes to the draft regulations while assembling their argument to the Supreme Court on why the draft should not be changed.

Rifle that killed boy was on high shelf

ANCHORAGE - A rifle that was accidentally fired, killing a 5-year-old boy this week, was placed high on a shelf in a Kasilof home.

However, the placement of the firearm did not prevent another youngster in the house from climbing up and getting it, Alaska State Troopers said Thursday.

Troopers did not reveal which of three siblings, ages 7, 5 and 2, who were home at the time was holding the .30-30-caliber rifle when it went off. But they said the bullet hit the 5-year-old boy in the stomach.

Troopers declined to identify the victim of Wednesday's shooting, citing the family's privacy during the investigation.

Kodiak to host Youth Court Conference

KODIAK - The United Youth Courts of Alaska, Kodiak Teen Court and the Alaska Division of Juvenile Justice hold their tenth annual state Youth Court Conference, Nov. 9-11, in Kodiak.

Each year the conference is hosted by different youth courts throughout Alaska. Last year it was held in Fairbanks; Homer played host the previous year.

Youth courts are an alternative way to handle some criminal cases involving teens. The mission of the United Youth Courts of Alaska is to work in partnership with Alaska communities and the formal juvenile justice system to develop and sustain youth courts.

The conference begins at 4:30 p.m. Thursday in the Kodiak High School Commons with a welcoming dinner and address from the dean of St. Innocent's Academy, Father Piasius.

Authorities: Man shot teen in self-defense

ANCHORAGE - Authorities said Friday they will not bring charges against Matthew Schneider for killing a teenager in his driveway last summer.

James Ifopo, 17, Rodney Maatafa, 16, and another unnamed youth were on bicycles and approached Schneider, who had just pulled into the driveway of his East Anchorage home just after 11:30 p.m. on June 28, authorities said.

Schneider told officials he was knocked to the ground with all three teenagers punching him. Schneider told police he drew a gun he carries with him and shot Ifopo in the chest. Maatafa was hit in the arm.

Ifopo died of the wound, and Maatafa was treated and released.

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