Alaska News Nightly: October 2, 2014

Stories are posted on the APRN news page. You can subscribe to APRN’s newsfeeds via emailpodcast and RSS. Follow us on Facebook at alaskapublic.org and on Twitter @aprn

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Gov. Parnell Defends Against Claims That Response To National Guard Was Too Slow

Alexandra Gutierrez, APRN – Juneau

Last month, Gov. Sean Parnell released a brutal federal report on misconduct in the Alaska National Guard. Sexual assault reports were mishandled, and alleged perpetrators were promoted. Military aircraft were used for personal reasons. Two state officials have already resigned as a result of the abuses. Now, the governor is playing defense, too. With only a month left before Election Day, Parnell is rejecting claims that he did not respond to the problems quickly enough.

Fairbanks 4 Member Granted Parole

Dan Bross, KUAC – Fairbanks

A Fairbanks man imprisoned for murder has been granted parole. The Alaska Parole Board approved Eugene Vent’s request despite continued claims by him and other members of the so called “Fairbanks Four”, that they are innocent.

Hilcorp Drilling Platform Catches Fire In Cook Inlet

Shaylon Cochran, KDLL – Kenai

Four people were safely evacuated from a drilling platform in Cook Inlet that caught fire this morning. The Coast Guard says the fire appeared to be out by 1 p.m. but has since flared up again.

Native Leaders Say Court Ruling Will Cut Off Native Children From Community, Culture

Joaqlin Estus, KNBA – Anchorage

Native leaders say a Sept. 12th Alaska Supreme Court ruling in a case involving a Yup’ik child will cause higher numbers of Native children to be cut off from their families and culture. The state says the decision in Tununuk v. the State of Alaska will put kids into permanent homes more quickly, and follows a U.S. Supreme Court ruling.

Quinhagak Residents Hopeful Hair Samples Will Unlock More Mysteries About Ancestors

Daysha Eaton, KYUK – Bethel

An archeological dig near Quinhagak, in Southwest Alaska, contributed the largest set of genetic samples for a groundbreaking DNA study of Arctic indigenous people released this summer. The study answers longstanding questions about migrations of the ancient Alaska Native people, on the state’s west coast, and the local people hope to learn even more about their own ancestors.

Congressional Candidates Talk Fish in Kodiak

Brianna Gibbs, KMXT – Kodiak

Alaska’s congressional candidates descended on Kodiak Wednesday night for a debate that pinned candidates running for both the House and Senate against their opponents on a number of fisheries-related issues.

A Sneak Peak Of Bethel’s New Fitness Center

Charles Enoch, KYUK – Bethel

A new fitness center, which includes a swimming pool, is set to open in Bethel in November. The project has been in the works for decades and anticipation is building in the community, where no other such facility exists.