Two Alaska State troopers were killed Thursday night while following up on a report. ABC News reports that one of the state troopers killed was seen on National Geographic’s “Alaska State Troopers,” a reality show which documents Alaskan officers on the job. The troopers were investigating someone brandishing a weapon in the isolated village of Tanana when the fatal shooting occurred.
The state troopers killed were identified as Trooper Gabriel “Gabe” Rich and Sgt. Patrick “Scott” Johnson. Troopers spokeswoman, Megan Peters, said Rich was featured on the National Geographic reality show and believed Johnson might have appeared on it. She wasn’t able to confirm that, however.
Authorities have detained the alleged shooter. Other than that, very few details have been released. Troopers responded to a report Wednesday night that someone had “brandished a firearm in the village,” Peters revealed. Rich and Johnson worked out of the troopers’ Fairbanks rural service unit.
According to ABC News, Ruby Cruger said the Alaska State Troopers were shot at her aunt’s home on Tanana’s Front Street at about 3 pm on Thursday. She alleged that her aunt wasn’t in the house at the time, but a relative of her aunt’s fired at the troopers inside the home.
Governor Sean Parnell released a statement from he and his wife, Sandy, that they both “were deeply saddened to learn of the senseless, brutal crime that took the lives of two of Alaska’s finest. These fallen heroes answered the call to serve and protect, and made the ultimate sacrifice, while keeping our communities safe.”
The village was located in a remote area of the state — about 130 miles west of Fairbanks. In fact, the Discovery Channel’s “Yukon Men” focused on the lives of those in the isolated community. There are no roads leading to Tanana. The destination can only be reached by air. About 238 people live in the remote community. They live a “traditional Athabascan lifestyle,” the report added. It includes hunting and fishing for their food.
The two deaths happened the very same day an officer who died in 2013 responding to a domestic violence call in Manokotak village. Thomas Madole was the village’s public safety officer. His name was added to the Indian Country Law Enforcement Officers Memorial located in Artesia, New Mexico.
Prior to Thursday’s shooting, 64 officers had been killed while on-duty since 1897 in Alaska.
Too many law enforcement officers are shot in the line of duty. As a previous Inquisitr article reported not too long ago, a Florida police officer was shot and killed before the shooter turned the gun on himself.
Law enforcement officers are grieving the senseless deaths of two Alaska State Troopers. It’s a dangerous job which risks the lives of brave officers every time they follow up on a call.
[Image via National Geographic Channel]