Shooting causes closure of Sterling Highway near Mile 147; Alaska State Troopers say highway to reopen at approximately 1 a.m. Monday
By McKibben Jackinsky
A shooting incident involving the female driver of a yellow SUV shortly after 6 p.m. Sunday caused the Alaska State Troopers to close the Sterling Highway near Mile 147 for several hours. The highway will reopen at approximately 1 a.m. Monday according to a press release issued by Megan Peters, information officer for the Department of Public Safety. Traffic is being allowed through on a limited basis due to investigation at the scene of the incident.
At approximately 5:18 p.m. Sunday, Alaska State Troopers on the Kenai Peninsula received several REDDI, Report Every Dangerous Driver Immediately, reports of erratic driving of a yellow SUV. After spotting the vehicle traveling northbound on the Sterling Highway near Happy Valley, an Alaska Wildlife Trooper attempted to make a traffic stop. The female driver did not immediately stop and continued northbound.
"When the vehicle temporarily stopped, the female driver began shooting," Peters said.
The trooper returned fire. The vehicle then drove northbound and stopped again at mile 147 in the middle of the highway.
Troopers from Soldotna and Anchor Point responded, as did the Homer Police Department and members of the Southcentral SERT, Special Emergency Reaction Team, team.
"After approximately 30 minutes the female eventually put her hands outside the vehicle and troopers were able to make contact," said Peters.
The driver was discovered to have an apparent gunshot wound to her torso and was transported to South Peninsula Hospital for treatment.
Investigators from the Alaska Bureau of Investigation have responded to the scene and are investigating. The trooper involved in the shooting will be placed on administrative leave for three days. In accordance with department policy, the trooper's name will be released following the administrative leave.
McKibben Jackinsky can be reached at email@example.com.