Troopers shoot, kill man near Thunderbird Falls

Friday, August 3, 2012 - 13:20

Alaska State Troopers say a vehicle pursuit that began in Wasilla ended when troopers shot and killed a man who advanced on them with a bat near Thunderbird Falls.

Troopers were not releasing details about the man who was killed or the officers involved in the shooting.

According to a press release issued by AST, troopers attempted to stop a 1994 Saturn coupe at approximately 4:01 a.m. at the corner of Lucille Street and the Parks Highway in Wasilla. Law enforcement personnel were able to deploy a spike strip before the Trunk Road exit off the Parks, but the man continued onto the southbound Glenn Highway and headed toward Anchorage.

Troopers say that the man's vehicle caught fire near Mile 25 at around 4:20 a.m., and he fled the vehicle. According to the report, attempts to subdue the man (including the use of a Taser) were unsuccessful. The man allegedly advanced on three troopers with a raised bat, at which point one of the troopers shot and killed the man. He was declared dead at the scene.

Both lanes of the Glenn were closed during the investigation, and the northbound lanes remained closed for several hours while law enforcement conducted their investigation.

Here's the Alaska State Troopers' account of the incident:

Location: Glenn Highway
Case Number: AK 12225200
Type: Trooper-involved shooting
Text:  On 8/3/12 at approximately 0401 hours, Alaska State Troopers attempted
to stop a 1994 Saturn Coupe at Lucille Street and the Parks Highway.  The
vehicle was observed failing to signal as it made a right-hand turn onto the
Parks Highway from Tommy Moe Drive. The vehicle failed to stop and a pursuit
ensued heading southbound on the Parks Highway. Prior to passing the Trunk Road
turnoff, spike strips were deployed and managed to deflate a tire. However, the
vehicle continued driving southbound onto the Glenn Highway. As the vehicle
neared milepost 25, the vehicle caught on fire and stopped in the southbound lane.
The driver and sole occupant, a male, exited the vehicle and started running
toward the northbound lane. Attempts to subdue the individual, including use
of a Taser, were unsuccessful. The man then stopped running and advanced on
three troopers with a raised bat. At that time, a trooper fired and shot
the man with his duty weapon at approximately 0420. The man was declared
deceased on scene. Alaska State Troopers were assisted by officers from the
Anchorage and Wasilla police departments to include a WPD canine. No officers
or troopers were injured in the incident. The southbound and northbound
lanes of the Glenn Highway were closed until the scene could be secured.  
APD took responsibility for traffic control and began a pilot car system
to route vehicles through the two southbound lanes to allow traffic to
move in both directions. Traffic was backed up to the interchange of the
Glenn and Parks highways. The northbound will remain closed for several
hours until the on-scene investigation is complete.

The name of the trooper will be released in 72 hours per department policy.
The Alaska Bureau of Investigation responded and assumed case responsibility.
Anyone witnessing either the pursuit or incident that has not been already
contacted by law enforcement is asked to call ABI in Palmer at (907)745-2131.
Author: HJB0
Received Friday, August 03, 2012 10:03 AM and posted Friday, August 03, 2012 10:03 AM

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