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Thursday, March 3, 2005 7TH EDITION

Man arrested in fatal stabbing of wife
ANCHORAGE (AP) - An Anchorage man was arrested today (Thursday) in the fatal stabbing of his wife.

Anchorage police says 34-year-old Jimmy Korkow was charged with first-degree murder and second-degree murder in the death of 30-year-old Teresa Korkow.

Jimmy Korkow had shown up in Soldotna, where he told Alaska State Troopers that there had been a disturbance at his home in Anchorage.

Anchorage police went to the home and found Teresa Korkow dead.

The couple's three daughters - ages 12, seven and six - were at the house but unharmed. Police says the girls were turned over to state protective custody.

Man commits suicide outside hospital emergency room
A man was found dead early this morning outside of Bartlett Regional Hospital after shooting himself.

Police Sergeant Ed Mercer says they got the call at 1-56 and were told that emergency room staff was treating the man.

When officers arrived they were told by staff that 52 year old Stephen Brian Barnes of Juneau was found lying outside the entrance to the emergency room.

The sergeant says Barnes apparently shot himself in the head with a .22 caliber handgun.

He was pronounced dead in the Emergency Room.

Next of kin was notified.

Barnes was a former hospital employee who worked in housekeeping.   A hospital official didn't have the exact dates of his employment, but said it had been some time since he worked there. 

There apparently was no evidence found that would explain why Barnes committed suicide.

The investigation is continuing. 

"Most Wanted" website started by Corrections Department
The Alaska Department of Corrections is launching a "Most Wanted" website.

The department is seeking the public's assistance in locating probationers or parolees who have stopped reporting to a probation or parole officer in violation of the conditions of their release.

The site contains photos and brief descriptions of the criminal history of the department's most wanted and instructs people what to do if they spot them.

The web page will initially feature ten of the most wanted, mostly sex offenders, felony drunk driving offenders, or offenders who have committed crimes against persons.

Commissioner Marc Antrim cautions members of the public against confronting an offender He said many just simply fail to follow up with the probation or parole officer, but some are more dangerous.

The department supervises about 5,200 felony probationers or parolees. About 900 are listed as "absconders"

The department's list can be found by going to www.correct.state.ak.us/corrections/wanted 

Fifteen arrested in Alaska, including Douglas man, under Operation Predator
ANCHORAGE (AP) - Officials say 15 arrests have been made in Alaska under Operation Predator -- an initiative of the U-S Immigration and Customs Enforcement.

Operation Predator is aimed at people who exploit children.

Officials say in Alaska the arrests included Robert W. Boatwright of Douglas. Boatwright is a registered sex offender. He pleaded guilty to three counts of possession of child pornography charges in November 2004.

Boatwright was arrested based on leads generated as part of an international investigation into a company in Belarus that provided credit card billing services for some 50 child pornography websites.

Boatwright is currently serving a ten-year sentence.

State Senate okays bill making seat belt violations primary offense
The State Senate today (Thursday) approved legislation that classifies a seat belt violation as a primary offense.

That would allow peace officers to pull over and cite individuals for not wearing a seat belt.

The sponsor, Anchorage Senator Con Bunde, said the measure passed the Senate, last year but did get out of the House.

Had it passed, Bunde says the state would have received about four million dollars in additional federal money to use for highway safety issues.

Bunde also says statistics reveal that seven more Alaskans would be alive today had the bill been approved.

Nome Senator Donny Olson was among the dissenters. He complained the bill makes it a crime instead of a ticketable offense.

He fears it would lead to other similar legislation and create a situation where "big brother is watching us all the time".

Senate Bill 87 was approved 11 to 6 and sent to the House. 

TSI annual meeting tonight
The annual meeting of the Territorial Sportsmen is this evening at the Yacht Club.

The meeting will be highlighted by the election of officers, according to President Mel Linthwaite, who says there are three seats up on the nine member panel. Two of the open seats are filled now by incumbents.

The annual meeting of the Territorial Sportsmen Scholarship Foundation will be held at the same time and include a report on what was done last year and what's planned this year.

Linthwaite says they'll have reports from the Alaska Fish and Game Department on wildlife and sport fish in Southeast Alaska and the presentation of special awards to sponsors of the organization's Golden North Salmon Derby.

He says there's a bronze award for $10,000; a silver award for $25,000; and Golden Salmon Award of $50,000. Linthwaite the last one is for a local merchant that has donated that amount over the last 20 years.

He wants everyone to be surprised tonight and is not disclosing who the recipients are right now.

The meeting begins at 7 following dinner. Dinner is free for members and also for those joining tonight and paying their ten dollar membership fee.

Doors open at 6.

Groups ask that Arctic drilling be kept out of budget bill
CONCORD, N.H. (AP) - Two groups in New Hampshire are trying to keep drilling in Alaska's Arctic National Wildlife Refuge out of the budget bill.

The groups -- the Sierra Club and the Public Interest Research Group -- says New Hampshire Senator Judd Gregg risks tarnishing his reputation as a conservationist if he allows drilling in ANWR.

Gregg has said the Senate budget committee he leads is likely to include drilling in its budget resolution. This is a tactic Republicans have tried to use in the past to overcome strong opposition to drilling in the refuge.

The so-called budget reconciliation process can't be subjected to a Democratic filibuster. That is a tactic that has blocked the refuge's development in the past.

Opponents say the federal budget should not be used to decide the fate of ANWR. They say Gregg's reputation is in jeopardy if he allows it to go forward.

Gregg has said the measure likely will be included because Republicans are trying to do what the President wants.

Compromise bill passes Legislature
JUNEAU (AP) - The Legislature Wednesday passed a compromise version of a bill on prison sentencing guidelines.

The measure would put the state in line with a U-S Supreme Court decision made last year. The Blakely versus Washington decision made it illegal for a judge to impose a sentence in excess of the prison terms written into law.

The bill would change the state's statutory prison terms from set years to a range of years.

The bill was sped through both chambers, sponsors say, because of the need for the state to quickly comply with the decision.

However, the Senate rejected a House amendment to the bill that said a sentence could be lowered if the offender suffers a mental disorder or disability, including fetal alcohol spectrum disorder.

A conference committee of three House and three Senate members worked out the compromise bill.

The reference to fetal alcohol spectrum disorder was removed as being too broad, and ``mental disorder or disability'' was changed to ``mental disease or defect.'' The second term is defined by Alaska law, while the first is not.

The conference committee's bill passed both chambers unanimously.

Sitka men arrested on drug charges
SITKA (AP) - Alaska State Troopers say a four-month investigation into sales of illegal drugs in Sitka has culminated in two arrests.

Officers served search warrants at four Sitka homes yesterday (Tuesday).

Arrested on four counts of misconduct involving a controlled substance was 32-year-old Luke McGraw.

Forty-seven-year-old Kenneth Kitka is charged with two counts of drug misconduct.

Troopers say the investigation focused on the distribution of marijuana, cocaine, methamphetamine, hallucinogenic mushrooms, and prescription drugs such as oxycontin.

Both trooper and Southeast police departments took part in the investigation.

School Bus driver fired over handling of student stabbing
ANCHORAGE (AP) - An Anchorage bus driver has been fired.

The man -- who has not been identified -- was in charge of the bus on February 16th when a 13-year-old allegedly stabbed a 14-year-old boy.

Anchorage School District officials say the driver's actions violated policy of the transportation company First Student.

General Manager Michael Jourdan says drivers are trained to report their location if anything out of the ordinary is happening on their bus.

Jourdan says the driver did not report the incident as required by company policy.

The driver apparently was not aware that a student had been stabbed. But he saw blood on the student's hand and allowed the boy to get off the bus anyway.

It was a passer-by who saw the boy bleeding and police were contacted.
(Anchorage Daily News)

Moose killed after attacking young boy
ANCHORAGE (AP) - A young, male moose was killed after attacking a boy in an Anchorage neighborhood.

The Alaska Department of Fish and Game says people had been regularly petting the moose and feeding the moose. It stomped the boy Monday, kicking him in the head. The boy suffered a split lip and headache.

An Anchorage police officer was called to the Muldoon neighborhood and shot the moose.

Wildlife biologist Rick Sinnott says this time of year moose are especially hungry. He says when a moose has been fed by people and it expects to get food and doesn't, it makes for a dangerous situation.

Residents of the mobile home park where the attack occurred had been feeding the moose for months. The manager of the park says he sent out a letter last summer advising residents not to feed the moose.
(Anchorage Daily News)

Ruling on geoduck clam farm pending
KETCHIKAN (AP) - An Anchorage Superior Court judge could rule today on a request for a preliminary injunction sought by a geoduck (GOO-ee-duck) clam farm leaseholder.

Etolin Enterprises wants to block the Department of Fish and Game from conducting a commercial fishery on its farm sites and others in southern Southeast Alaska.

Anchorage Superior Court Judge Peter Michalski (muh-CAWL'-skee) took the matter under advisement yesterday (Wednesday)

The Fish and Game Department says the one-time fishery's goal is to ensure that farm sites do not have significant populations of wild geoducks.

The Alaska Supreme Court ruling last year that the department lacks authority to give aquatic farmers exclusive rights to harvest wild stocks from their lease sites.

Etolin Enterprises' lawsuit claims a fishery could cause irreparable harm to its farm site by disturbing the sea floor.

State attorneys asked Michalski to deny the injunction request.

They say commercial geoduck dive fisheries similar to the proposed fishery have been conducted for nearly 20 years.

Feds expect Alaska could move to ban fish farming
ANCHORAGE (AP) - A U-S Department of Commerce official says Alaska officials probably could block development of fish farms in federal waters off the state's shores.

But Linda Chaves of the National Marine Fisheries Service says it's premature to say Alaska definitely will have the power to prevent the farms.

Chaves said it depends on the final wording of legislation the Commerce Department expects to roll out in coming weeks setting up a regulatory framework for aquaculture development in the federal waters.

Federal waters extend from three to 200 miles offshore.

Under Alaska law, fish farming is banned in state waters up to three miles from shore.

Governor Murkowski and many Alaska commercial fishermen oppose placing fish farms in the more remote federal waters.

Murkowski has called for a five-year ban on new aquaculture sites in federal waters pending studies of possible harm to the environment and the state's wild fish.

Money available to help low-income pay fuel bills
ANCHORAGE (AP) - A federal agency has released an additional 50 million dollars in emergency funds to pay fuel bills.

The money is to help low-income families pay their energy bills. The emergency money is being issued through the Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program in the Department of Health and Human Services.

Under the program, Alaska will be getting more than 342-thousand dollars.

Individuals interested in applying for assistance should contact their local or state Department of Health and Human Services.

Searchers find hypothermic Solomon man
NOME (AP) - A man from the tiny village of Solomon in western Alaska is recovering from hypothermia and frostbite after he was stranded in a storm.

Alaska State Troopers say searchers found 83-year-old Garfield Okitkon after he was reported overdue from a trip to gather firewood.

Solomon is a community with a population of about eight 30 miles east of Nome.

Troopers say they received a call at one-30 a-m yesterday from Okitkon's older brother that he had not returned.

Okitkon had used his snowmobile to look for firewood.

A ground storm with high winds were reported in the area.

Searchers on the ground and in the air left at first light.

They spotted Okitkon at about eleven-30 a-m.

He was transported to the Nome hospital suffering from severe hypothermia and is expected to survive.

Boozer goes on injured list
SALT LAKE CITY (AP) - Utah Jazz star Carlos Boozer has been placed on the injured list because of a foot injury.

The former Juneau-Douglas High School star strained his right foot at Phoenix on February 14th.

The Jazz says Boozer's foot hasn't healed after more than two weeks of rest.

Boozer has missed five straight games and will miss at least five more while on the injured list.

He's averaging nearly 18 points per game -- a team high -- and nine rebounds in 51 games.

Science fair to include projects from all around Southeast Alaska
The Southeast Science Fair opens Friday at the Marie Drake gym.

Fair Director Koren Bosworth said KINY's Capital Chat yesterday (Wednesday) that there are over a hundred entries from all around the region.

The event became a regional fair three years ago, but Bosworth says this is the first time their are participants from other communities.

She says they tried very hard prior to this year to recruit others from the region, but various factors including the cost to get to Juneau prevented such participation.

But Bosworth says thanks, in part, to Dr. Cathy Connor of the University of Alaska Southeast that changed this year. She says Connor passed a large part of a grant she received to them. That money was used to bring students to Juneau for the fair.

The fair operates from 4:30 to 9:00p.m. Friday and on Saturday from 11 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. An awards ceremony is that evening from 7 to 8:30.

Winners will advance to the International Science Fair from May 8 through the 12th in Phoenix.


(Copyright 2005 Alaska Juneau Communications - KINY Radio)