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Wednesday, April 11, 2012

Judge sets bail at $1 million; DA seeks attempted murder

JUNEAU EMPIRE
Michael Penn/Juneau Empire
Alaska State Trooper Al Fenumiai, left, leads Troy Wilson, a lieutenant with the Juneau Police Department when he retired with the Juneau Police Department in December, into Juneau District Court for his arraignment on Tuesday. Wilson was arrested after firing 75 shots at police officers and their patrol vehicles when they responded to a call at his house Saturday evening, according to the police. Bail was set at $1 Million.
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The former Juneau police lieutenant who opened fire on police officers Saturday evening was charged with three additional counts of first-degree attempted murder Tuesday, according to new charging documents.


Troy A. Wilson, 45, now faces a total of 15 felony charges. Four of those are for attempting to murder four different Juneau police officers — his former coworkers — by firing a rifle at them.


District Attorney David Brower also charged Wilson with three additional counts of third-degree assault and another count of second-degree weapons misconduct.


Wilson was arrested early Sunday morning following a five-hour shooting spree Saturday evening. Prosecutors say the former SWAT instructor barricaded himself in his house and fired about 75 to 100 shots. He used night vision equipment to aim at police officers, charging documents show.


Police said no one was injured during the incident.


With eyes cast down and head bowed, Wilson made for his first public court appearance Tuesday. He wore a orange prisoner’s jumpsuit.


Not once did he appear to look upward to meet to eyes of the judge, the two uniformed Juneau police officers in the back of the courtroom or the four women — who refused to be identified — sitting in the first two front rows.


The only time Wilson raised his gaze was to ask a question to his newly hired defense attorney, Julie Willoughby, who sat to his left at the defendant’s table.


The 17-year JPD veteran was arraigned Sunday by a magistrate judge. That judge set bail at $500,000 cash per the state’s request.


On Tuesday, District Attorney David Brower asked the judge to raise bail to $1 million cash.


“Judge, the initial information was filed Sunday morning after initially contacting Juneau police,” Brower said. “Upon further review of the evidence and further investigation and interviews, the state has added the additional charges and the additional information. And we’re asking that the bail be increased to a million dollars — $500,000 appearance and $500,000 performance, along with third-party custodian. The allegations are extremely serious and the statements made are extremely serious.”


Charging documents show that Wilson vowed to “kill the world” during the rampage. He also threatened “to hunt down and kill” Juneau Police Department Chief Greg Browning, Assistant Chief Paige Decker, Captain Ed Mercer and Investigator Kim Horn, who tried to negotiate with him by phone throughout the standoff, according to an updated affidavit filed by Brower.


Haines Magistrate Judge John Hutchins, who was filling in for Juneau District Court Judge Thomas Nave, granted Brower’s bail request after Willoughby reserved their bail order.


“I think the state’s request is appropriate,” based on the nature of the offense and the danger presented to the community and victims, Hutchins said.


Brower also requested a blanket condition of release that Wilson be prohibited from contacting any Juneau Department officers, in addition to those listed in the criminal complaint, should Wilson post bail.


Willoughby objected, saying Wilson should only be prohibited from initiating contact with any JPD officers. She didn’t object to her client being prohibited from contacting any of the officers specifically listed in the complaint.


The judge agreed with Willoughby and allowed that conditions of release to be amended.


The nine-minute hearing ended with Wilson shuffling out of the courtroom with Willoughby by his side. He was escorted by an armed court security officer.


Wilson is next scheduled to appear in court later this month on April 20 for a preliminary hearing.


Officers had responded to Wilson’s house of Black Wolf Way around 10:15 p.m. Saturday night when they received a 911 phone call from his wife. Wilson’s wife, only identified as “J.W.” in court papers, told police her husband was suicidal and had a gun.


The shooting began sometime after that, though it’s not immediately clear when. Some neighbors previously told the Empire they did not hear shots until later in the evening.


Brower alleges Wilson, who was wearing an armored vest, attempted to murder officers Lee Phelps, Darin Schultz, Brandon Lawrenson and Krag Campbell.


Phelps was stationed behind some trees behind Wilson’s house, and heard bullets hitting all around him, Brower wrote. A bullet hole was later found in a tree behind where Phelps was stationed, the affidavit states.


Schultz was positioned across the street from Wilson’s house between a truck and a shed that were about 10 to 15 feet apart. Wilson began firing multiple rounds at Schultz’s direction “at a close enough distance that Officer Shultz could hear the rounds whizzing by his head,” Brower wrote. Three rounds were ultimately recovered by the shed, Brower said.


Schultz was also one of the first officers who arrived on scene. He quickly exited his patrol vehicle that was later found with about eight bullet holes in it, according to the document.


Lawrenson was stationed with Krag Campbell between a house and a 24-foot boat across the street. Wilson began shooting at their direction, and Campbell reported hearing bullets “zipping by” his head, the affidavit states.


“Based on the direction from which the rounds were fired, Investigator (Paul) Hatch assessed that Wilson had to move from the downstairs area of his residence to the upstairs in order to fire in the direction of Investigators Lawrenson and Campbell,” the affidavit states. “Wilson also stated to the crisis negotiation team that he could see officers across the street from his house and that he intended to shoot them.”


The three new assault charges are for allegedly placing officers Brian Dallas, Dominic Branson and Lt. David Campbell in fear of imminent serious injury. The three officers were stationed approximately five houses down from Wilson’s house and around the corner.


Wilson fired shots in their direction, and the rounds were skipping off the roadway about 20 to 50 feet away from them, Brower wrote.


“Each of the officers was in fear that they would be injured by the ricochetting rounds,” and moved their position further away, Brower said.


Wilson resigned from JPD in December as he was being investigated for off-duty behavior that allegedly violated police policy and procedure, JPD spokeswoman Cindee Brown-Mills told the Empire Monday.


The subject of that investigation has not been released, though Brown-Mills said it was associated with a psychological condition.


After his resignation, Wilson was working as a juvenile probation officer under the state of Alaska’s Division of Juvenile Justice, according to an online employee directory.


The JPD this week began providing voluntary support services for officers and employees who were involved in or affected by the shooting, Brown-Mills said.


A counselor was available at police headquarters Monday and group sessions on “Group Critical Incident Stress Management” began Tuesday afternoon.


JPD also has a volunteer chaplain available to staff and has encouraged employees to use the city’s Employee Assistance Program if necessary.


Brown-Mills said Tuesday that 22 JPD employees worked during the shooting and an additional six people helped investigate afterward.


• Contact reporter Emily Russo Miller at 523-2263 or at emily.miller@juneauempire.com.

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