Alaska State Troopers Press Release of Wednesday, May 11, 2022

Any charges reported in these press releases are merely accusations and the defendants are presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty.

A Detachment

  • AK22045342

    Location: Ninilchik
    Type: DUI, Parole Violation

    Dispatch Text:

    On 5/9/11 at about 2000 hours, Troopers arrested Reed Kaiser, 45 of Clam Gulch, for DUI. Kaiser had been contacted during an investigation into a vehicle found in the ditch on the Sterling Highway near Deep Creek Road. An investigation showed Kaiser was operating the vehicle while under the influence of alcohol. Kaiser was also found to be in violation of his parole conditions. He was arrested and remanded into the Homer Jail.

    Posted on 5/11/2022 6:21:49 PM by DPS\djcox

B Detachment

  • AK22045827

    Location: Palmer
    Type: DUI

    Dispatch Text:

    On 5/10/2022, at approximately 2225 hours, AST received a report of a male passed out in the driver's seat of a vehicle in the parking lot of a business on Trunk Road in Palmer. AST responded to the scene and contacted the driver, who was identified as Derek Underwood, age 40 of Wasilla. Derek was arrested for the crime of DUI and was later released to a sober person with a misdemeanor summons.

    Posted on 5/11/2022 3:44:29 AM by DPS\hcmckenney

C Detachment

  • AK22040009

    Location: Kodiak
    Type: SAR/Missing Child

    Dispatch Text:

    Final Update 5/18/22: The Alaska State Troopers and Alaska Wildlife Troopers have concluded their investigation into the death of Sawyer Cipolla. After a thorough review of all of the facts and evidence, Troopers have determined that Sawyer died from hypothermia due to exposure to the elements, and no signs or indications of foul play or suspicious circumstances were found. The preliminary information from the State Medical Examiner corroborates these findings. DPS would like to thank the thousands of volunteers, dozens of agencies, businesses, and organizations, and the entire Kodiak community for your assistance with this search and investigation over the last week and a half.   

    Update 5/15/22: On May 15, 2022, at approximately 12:30 pm, the Alaska State Troopers and Alaska Wildlife Troopers were notified that two adults recreating in the Pillar Mountain area had located a deceased juvenile. Alaska State Troopers and Alaska Wildlife Troopers immediately responded to the area. Troopers identified the deceased juvenile as 7-year-old Kodiak resident Sawyer Cipolla who was reported missing on May 7, 2022. There were no obvious signs of foul play identified at the scene by Troopers. Sawyer’s remains will be sent to the State Medical Examiner’s Office for autopsy. Next of kin has been notified. The investigation into the death of Sawyer Cipolla is ongoing.


    Update 5/14/22: An update on the search strategy can be found online at:

    UPDATE: 5/12/2022, 14:00 hours. Crews, air assets, K9 teams, and volunteers continued to search throughout the day on 5/11 and are continuing with coordinated searches today. Kodiak Island Search & Rescue (KISAR) concentrated their search efforts in a prior search area to close any gap in coverage. No new leads have developed in the last 24 hours. Anyone with information please contact the Alaska State Troopers in Kodiak directly by calling 907-486-4121.     

    UPDATE: 5/11/2022, 1000 hours. Throughout the day on 5/10, search dogs were utilized and multiple air assets including USCG, AK Army National Guard, and Deckload Aviation helicopters continued to fly the expanded search area while 300+ ground searchers continued to conduct directed searches.  Ground search teams will continue searching today. Four new K9 teams arrived in Kodiak onboard a USCG C-130 from Anchorage and will be searching throughout the day.  At this time no new leads have developed. Anyone with information please contact the Alaska State Troopers in Kodiak directly by calling 907-486-4121.     

    UPDATE: 5/10/2022 the search for Sawyer Cipolla continues. Aerial assets (USCG helicopter and Deckload Aviation’s R-44) flew the coastline and search area throughout the day and into the evening of 5/9 with thermal goggles and FLIR.  Search dogs were deployed into multiple search areas and will continue searching throughout the day today.  Volunteer searchers will meet back at Bayside Fire Department (Incident Command and searcher staging area) at 1200 hours to begin the 4th day of ground searching. Anyone with information please contact the Alaska State Troopers in Kodiak directly by calling 907-486-4121.

    UPDATE: 5/9/2022, 1800 hours, more than 400 ground searchers, multiple K9 search teams, multiple aircraft, thermal drones, and boats continued the search for Sawyer Cipolla on Kodiak Island today with no results. Search efforts will continue into the evening and night hours. The large scale of the search, and tremendous efforts by volunteers and search agencies continues to be outstanding. Anyone with information please contact the Alaska State Troopers in Kodiak directly by calling 907-486-4121.

    UPDATE: 5/9/2022, the search for seven-year-old Sawyer Cipolla that went missing from his residence in Kodiak on 5/7/2022, continues.  There has been an outpouring of support from the community with as many as 950 volunteers searching over the weekend to include ground searchers, local pilots, and horseback teams. More than a dozen agencies are participating in the search including; Kodiak Police Department, City of Kodiak Fire Department, Bayside Volunteer Fire Department, Kodiak Island Search and Rescue, Alaska State Troopers, Alaska Wildlife Troopers, US Coast Guard, US Navy Seals, Alaska Air National Guard Rescue Coordination Center, K9 search and rescue teams from Anchorage and Mat-Su including; MATSAR, AKSSD, and ASARD. As the search continues, volunteers are requested to check in at the Bayside Volunteer Fire Department. Anyone with information regarding the whereabouts of Sawyer Cipolla is asked to contact the Alaska State Troopers in Kodiak at 907-486-4121.

    A missing person's bulletin including a current photo can be found online here.

    ORIGINAL Release: On 05/07/22 at approximately 1220 hours Alaska State Troopers in Kodiak were notified of a missing autistic 7 year old child last seen at his residence off Forest Drive in Kodiak. At the time of the report, the child had been missing for approximately 30 minutes. The missing child’s name is Sawyer but he responds to “come on in”. He was last seen wearing grey pants, camo top with hiking boots. Sawyer is 4.5ft tall, 55lbs, white male, brown hair, and brown eyes. AST arrived on scene and immediately started searching with no success.  As of 1845 hours, there are approximately 100 people actively involved in the search, including members of Kodiak Police Department, AWT, AST, City of Kodiak Fire Department, Bayside Volunteer Fire Department, Kodiak Island Search and Rescue, Coast Guard sector Anchorage/Air Station Kodiak and local residents.  If located please call 907-486-4121.

    Posted on 5/7/2022 7:06:17 PM by DPS\tjdespain . Edited on 5/11/2022 10:00:53 AM by DPS\tjdespain

D Detachment

  • AK22045833

    Location: Fairbanks
    Type: VCOR

    Dispatch Text:

    On 5/10/2022 AST received a report of a disturbance in North Pole.  During the course of the investigation it was revealed that Mark Bertelson, age 57 of North Pole, had violated his conditions of release on the original charge of Theft 1.  Mark was remanded to Fairbanks Correctional Center on the charge of Violating his Conditions of Release.  

    Posted on 5/11/2022 12:08:38 AM by DPS\bkhaley

  • AK22045843

    Location: Fairbanks
    Type: DUI & Asslt 3

    Dispatch Text:

    On 5/10/2022 just before midnight, a REDDI report came into Fairbanks Dispatch Center reporting a possibly intoxicated driver northbound on the Parks Hwy, nearly striking another vehicle after driving at an excessive speed in the oncoming traffic lane. AST responded and contacted the vehicle matching the description on 5/11/2022 at approximately 0024 hours. The driver and sole occupant, Jacob Kincaid (age 25 of Palmer), was found to be intoxicated and arrested for DUI, Assault 3 (fear), and given multiple citations.

    Posted on 5/11/2022 2:32:38 AM by DPS\jrianacone

  • AK22045853

    Location: Fairbanks
    Type: DUI, MICS 5, Promoting Controband

    Dispatch Text:

    On 5-11-22 at approximately 0257 hours, Fairbanks AST conducted a traffic stop on the Mitchell Expressway for failing to maintain its lane. The driver was identified as, Christina Heaps, age 49 of Fairbanks. Investigation showed Christina was operating a vehicle under the influence of alcohol. She was placed under arrest. During a search incident to arrest, a controlled substance was located in the vehicle. Christina provided a sample on the Datamaster. She was remanded to FCC for DUI, MICS5, and Promoting Contraband 1. 

    Posted on 5/11/2022 6:21:54 AM by DPS\cihudson

  • AK22041405

    Location: Fairbanks
    Type: Warrant arrest

    Dispatch Text:

    On 5-10-2022 at about 1339 hours, the Alaska State Troopers in Fairbanks received information that Lyle Mckee was in a residence in Fairbanks near Gold Hill Road. The Fairbanks Criminal Suppression Unit, Fairbanks Patrol Unit, Adult Probation Office and Trooper Helicopter "Helo Two" responded to the area. Units located Lyle hiding in the residence and Lyle was arrested without incident. Lyle was transported to FCC where he was remanded on his Fail to return to jail warrant and his $10000 Fail to appear warrant for DWI and eluding.  

    Posted on 5/11/2022 4:45:33 PM by DPS\bacebulski

  • AK22046120

    Location: NENANA
    Type: Theft/ Shoplifting

    Dispatch Text:

    On 5/11/22, at 0943 hours,  a local store owner reported to AST Dispatch a 13 year old male had stolen candy from his store.  Store security video was provided to the VPSO showing the offense being committed.  Base on the facts of the investigation this matter will be referred to Nenana Courts restorative justice program.   

    Posted on 5/11/2022 9:47:54 PM by DPS\mfhaglin

  • AK22045801

    Location: Allakaket
    Type: Death Investigation

    Dispatch Text:

    On May 10, 2022, 50-year-old Donald “Shaun” Bergman was found deceased in his home in Allakaket. Investigation did not reveal any suspicious activity took place. Shaun was released to family in Allakaket.

    Posted on 5/11/2022 10:29:36 PM by DPS\jrongstad

  • AK22045893

    Location: Chalkyitsik
    Type: Assault

    Dispatch Text:

    On 05/11/2022 Trooper of the Fairbanks Rural Unit responded to the Village of Chalkyitsik reference a domestic disturbance involving Edward Paul. The investigation lead to the arrest of Edward for Assault in the Fourth Degree. He was transported to Fairbanks where he was remanded to Fairbanks Correctional Center.  

    Posted on 5/11/2022 11:09:44 PM by DPS\lggarvin

E Detachment ...No news reported.

Headquarters ...No news reported.

AK Wildlife Troopers ...No news reported.

AK Bureau of Investigation ...No news reported.

AK Bureau of Highway Patrol

  • AK22043820

    Location: Big Lake
    Type: MIW 4, Registration violation, VCOR, agency assist

    Dispatch Text:

    On 05-05-22, at 1518 hours, AST stopped to assist a vehicle and motorcycle partially blocking the roadway on Hollywood Rd near the Big Lake Transfer site.  Upon approach the motorcycle rider concealed the registration of the motorcycle.  The motorcycle rider was identified as Joseph R. Dennis, age 37, of Big Lake.  The occupants of the vehicle were identified as driver Mason N. House, age 19, of Big Lake, passenger Aleigh J. Stauffer, age 34, of Big Lake and a male passenger.  An investigation on scene determined the following: Aleigh J. Stauffer was arrested for a active warrant for the original charges of Theft 4, MICS 5 and criminal trespass.  Mason was on PED and violated the conditions of his release for being possession of metal knuckles.  Mason was arrested for VCOR at the request of PED along with a new charge of misconduct involving a weapon in the 4th degree.  Joseph was issued two criminal citations for improper use of registration and no motor vehicle liability insurance.  Joseph was also determined to be on PED monitoring and was instructed to report the following morning.  The final male on scene was instructed to report to his probation officer and released without new charges.  Aleigh and Mason were remanded to Mat-Su Pretrial.  Both vehicles were towed from the scene.

    Posted on 5/11/2022 6:22:44 PM by DPS\prfrederick

  • AK22046058

    Location: Wasilla
    Type: DWLR, Warrant arrest

    Dispatch Text:

    On 05-11-22, at 1445 hours, AST conducted a traffic stop on a 2010 Suzuki SX4 on Knik Goose Bay Rd at Entry Way for an equipment violation.  The driver was identified as Janel R Brodigan, age 43, of Wasilla.  Janel was determined to be driving with a revoked driver’s license stemming from a Felony DUI conviction.  Janel’s license was revoked until 2087.  Janel was issued a criminal citation to appear in court at a later date for DWLR.  A passenger in the vehicle was identified as Jody L. Speerstra, age 44, of Wasilla.  Jody was determined to have an arrest warrant for the original charge of theft 4th and criminal trespass.  Jody was placed under arrests and later remanded to Mat-Su Pretrial where he was held on $200 bail.     

    Posted on 5/11/2022 6:29:23 PM by DPS\prfrederick

  • AK22045728

    Location: Palmer
    Type: DWLS, No insurance, Fail to display

    Dispatch Text:

    On 05-10-22, at 1603 hours, AST conducted a traffic stop on a red Dodge Dakota on Trunk Rd near the Palmer Wasilla Hwy for failing to display a vehicle registration.  The driver was identified as Jon E. Reisner, age 35, of Wasilla.  Jon was determined to driving the Dodge with a suspended licens.  Further the Dodge was confirmed to have no plates attached to it and was not properly registered or insured.  Jon was issued a citation with a mandatory court date for failing to display registration, driving with a suspended license and no insurance.  The Dodge was impounded for further investigation. 

    Posted on 5/11/2022 8:36:06 PM by DPS\prfrederick

AK Bureau of Judicial Services ...No news reported.

AK Div of Fire and Life Safety ...No news reported.