Hoonah Suspect Gives Up; Charged with Murder

Casey Kelly, KTOO – Juneau

The standoff is over between Alaska State Troopers and a Hoonah man who allegedly shot and killed two police officers Saturday night.

It ended shortly after 9:30 Monday morning, when the suspect, 45-year-old John Marvin, Jr., left his home in response to troopers’ efforts.

Marvin is charged with two counts of first degree murder in the shooting deaths of Hoonah Police officers Tony Wallace and Matt Tokuoka. Troopers’ Spokeswoman Megan Peters in Anchorage declined to get into specifics about what tactics were used to end the standoff, citing an ongoing investigation.

“All I am saying is that Marvin exited the residence in response to efforts by SERT,” she said. SERT is the troopers’ Special Emergency Response Team. Peters said law enforcement personnel from around the state provided resources and manpower during the incident, including Juneau, Anchorage, and Sitka Police, Alaska Wildlife Troopers, and a U-S Forest Service officer.

Troopers said Marvin shot Wallace and Tokuoka shortly after 10:30 p.m. Saturday, in what is being described as an ambush witnessed by the dead officers’ families.

Hoonah Mayor Windy Skaflestad said his son Arlen – a reserve officer – was one of the first on scene.

“He told me the same story, that the families was there: the mother of Tony and the wife and two children of Matt, Skaflestad said. “They were good friends. They were visiting on the street when it happened.”

A Coast Guard helicopter transported one of the victims to Juneau, where he died. The other officer died at Hoonah’s health clinic.

Meanwhile, Marvin barricaded himself inside his home on Front Street in Hoonah.

Skaflestad said Marvin is well-known to Hoonah Police. A year ago, he says Marvin attempted to wrestle Officer Wallace’s gun away from him.

“He picked on the wrong person when he went after to wrestle Tony, because Tony is a wrestler, a state wrestler champ,” Skalfestad said. “So, it was the wrong person. But they had quite a bit of bump-ins with him for about a month or two about a year ago. So, I think that’s what set this all off.”

Hoonah is a city of about 800 residents, 40 miles west of Juneau on northern Chichagof Island. The shootings leave the community with just one police officer, Chief John Millan. The town also has one officer-in-training.

City Administrator Bob Prunella said officers from Wrangell Police Department will fill-in while the force gets back on its feet.

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