Homer Alaska - News

Story last updated at 3:20 PM on Wednesday, August 1, 2012

Men shot at after alleged robbery



By Jerzy Shedlock
MORRIS NEWS SERVICE / PENINSULA CLARION

Alaska State Troopers on Wednesday arrested multiple suspects after two men were allegedly robbed at gunpoint and shot at by one of the suspects.

Paul M. Larson, 36, of Wasilla, Jill C. Abear, 30, of Anchor Point, and Dessie L. Ozhuwan, 21, of Kenai, were arrested for first-degree robbery, second-degree theft and attempted murder. Court records show Larson and Abear facing the attempted murder charge while there are no open cases against Ozhuwan.

At 8:46 p.m., two men, identified as Richard Guthrie and Robert Coulman in court records, reported to troopers they were robbed at gunpoint in the parking lot of Clamshell Lodge in Clam Gulch, troopers reported.

According to an affidavit filed by Trooper James G. Truesdell, Guthrie said $1,010 was stolen. The affidavit indicates the involved parties are acquainted.

The men followed the vehicle until it stopped on Kalifornsky Beach Road near the Vagabond Bar. According to troopers, the driver exited the vehicle, fired two shots at Guthrie and Coulman and then continued toward Kenai. The men continued to give chase and called 911 after several miles.

Troopers encourage people to call law enforcement rather than pursue suspects by themselves.

"It is not a good idea to place yourself in danger by going after someone who has pulled a gun on you," said troopers' spokeswoman Megan Peters in an email.

The men lost the vehicle but gave its description to the troopers, who located and pulled the vehicle over on the Kenai Spur Highway. The troopers arrested the vehicle's three occupants and took them to Wildwood Correctional Center.

The alleged victims' and the alleged suspects' stories differ. According to the affidavit, Guthrie said Larson arranged a meet at Clamshell Lodge to pay back some borrowed money; Larson said during an interview with troopers that Abear contacted Guthrie to allegedly buy drugs, but the deal went awry.

Larson denied shooting at the men, and he said no one shot at them. A gun, however, was allegedly thrown out of the vehicle before being stopped by troopers, according to the affidavit.

Troopers were unable to recover a handgun after an extensive search, they reported.

Abear denied knowing why the incident occurred, and Ozhuwan said her party was returning from Homer when Coulman's vehicle drove up behind them and harassed them.

A second-degree misconduct involving a controlled substance charge was also filed Thursday against Abear.

The incident is still under investigation.

Preliminary hearings are set for Aug. 6 at the Kenai Courthouse.

Jerzy Shedlock can be reached at jerzy.shedlock@peninsulaclarion.com.

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