A couple months ago there was a lot of buzz on social medial about the recent killings by a speculated serial killer. After the most recent homicides that took place at the end of August, there has not been any deaths resembling the previous murders by the speculated killer. Still, many people are continuing to taking safety precautions by not traveling alone late at night and staying indoors. Others have brushed it off knowing Alaska has a high homicide rate and no current signs of the alleged killer. The killings that took place were unusual compared to other homicides that took place this year.
On January 28, 2016, Selena Annette Mullenax, 19, was found dead at Point Woronzof. An hour later, Foriegnne “Onnie” Aubert-Morissette, 20, was found badly injured and later died at the hospital.
The second instance took place July 3, 2016, when the bodies of Brianna Adrianne Foisy, 20, and Jason Lee Netter Sr., 41, were found on the Ship Creek Trail. The most recent killings took place on August 28, 2016, when Bryant “Brie” De Husson, 25, and Kevin Schuyler Turner, 34, were found dead in the Valley of the Moon Park. It is questionable if students at UAA should fear this potential threat on campus.
Anchorage residents have heard about the killings over social media and by word of mouth. There is still confusion on who this person is and what motives they had behind the killings. Kelly Kim, UAA dental hygiene major, like many in the general public, has a general idea about the case.
“I know the victims were killed in similar ways and in couples. I don’t believe I know anything beyond that,” Kim said. “I mourn the death of lives lost, but I’m not worried about it in any fashion.”
Some have done more research and have created their own theories on the matter. Tim Blevins, an Anchorage resident, has been interested in these recent killings and has conducted his own investigative research.
“I think it’s very interesting that all of the people who have been murdered by this person are in pairs of twos, they’re all people that are on the fringe of society, so by saying they’re not linked in any way is not entirely accurate,” Blevins said.
Blevins also has ideas about the technique and gun skills of this potential threat.
“He shoots the first person with a high caliber rifle and he doesn’t shoot a lot of rounds, which leads me to think he is accurate, that he’s trained, and knows how to do it, then he hunts the second person down with a handgun,” Blevins said.
People are having mixed feelings about these similar death instances. There are many jokes going around on Twitter and Facebook. However, many claim this is a serious issue. Andrew Smith, business major agrees on the significance of this issue.
“I mean people are dying, so you have to take it seriously,” Smith said.
Anchorage has had a large amount of homicides this year, so many people believe that this one potential threat should not be over stressed and feared. Nonetheless, this year alone there has been 25 homicides according to the Anchorage Dispatch News, which is not including two APD related shootings. At this rate, with a couple more months left in the year, it is possible we will surpass last year with 25 deaths.
Due to the unusual activity, many are changing minor parts of their daily routine. There are warnings about going out too early or too late in the day in certain areas.
“Yeah, I just don’t go down to those spots where people have been found [dead] at those later times,” Smith said.
UAA has back trails that could be unsafe later in the day, especially when students have late classes or study for long periods at a time. The University Police Department at UAA provides many services in order to keep students safe. One service that can be requested by anyone on campus is a safety escort.
Police have issued a warning to not travel alone at late hours. As of now, the FBI is assisting the police in investigating recent homicides in Anchorage. Authorities have not yet released details of how the victims died nor comment on the possibility of the correlation between the homicide cases. There is not much information open to the public about exact details to protect the investigation until more evidence can be provided.
Although resources are offered for protection, don’t disregard the fact that there is a potential threat in Anchorage, make sure to report any suspicious behavior to not only protect yourself but others. The most important thing is to be aware of your surroundings and current events concerning this alleged killer and other potential threats.