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Updated: Suspect In Alaska Cop Killings Arrested

Updated: Suspect In Alaska Cop Killings Arrested

Anchorage Daily News via YellowBrix

August 30, 2010

HOONAH – A man who troopers say shot and killed two police officers in the Southeast village of Hoonah was captured after leaving his house shortly after 9:30 a.m. today.

John Marvin Jr., 45, is being charged with two counts of first-degree murder, said troopers spokeswoman Megan Peters.

The arrest ended a standoff that forced school officials to call off classes and led authorities to vacate surrounding houses as Marvin barricaded himself in his home, residents said.

“It’s over,” interim city administrator Bob Prunella said this morning.

Peters wouldn’t provide details about the arrest, saying only that Marvin “exited the residence and we took him into custody.” No one was injured, she said.

Charla Wright, chief administrator for Hoonah City Schools, lives maybe a block away from Marvin’s home, she said. Authorities had surrounded the house and she could hear people talking over a loudspeaker through the night, she said.

“They had cordoned off the streets for a block … in all directions,” Wright said.

Trauma teams are expected in the village as early as today to provide counseling to residents, Wright said. A cruise ship that was expected to arrive in the village of 850 people was re-routed, she said.

The school will reopen Tuesday, Wright said.

Troopers say that on Saturday night Marvin ambushed and killed Hoonah police officers Sgt. Anthony Wallace, 32, and Matthew Tokuoka, 39.

Tokuoka was off duty. His wife and young children witnessed the violence as it began, as did the mother of the other officer, said Prunella, the city administrator.

Troopers said they were alerted to the shootings around 11 p.m. Tokuoka’s father-in-law, Hoonah resident George Martin, said he lives nearby and heard the gunfire.

Tokuoka was in his car with his wife, Haley, their 6-year-old son and their 2-year-old daughter, Martin said. They stopped to talk to Wallace, the officer on duty, who was standing outside the vehicle. Wallace’s mother, a nurse who was visiting from Florida, was nearby and saw her son shot, Prunella said.

“The regular officer went down first. In fact, my daughter and the kids were in the car. Matt wasn’t actually on duty yet,” Martin said. "The shots rang out, you know, and they hit Tony. I guess they hit them in the leg first. And then Matt told my daughter, he said to get the kids out of here. ‘Get out of here!’ " he said.

“He went to help Tony and I think that’s when he got it.”

Prunella said Tokuoka tried to get other people to safety.

Wallace’s mother, Debbie Greene, had been in Hoonah only a few days and was riding along with her son on patrol, said Jamie Brothers, a family friend.

“It was her first visit to Alaska,” Brothers said.


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