Live Blog: Hoonah homicide trial day 7

Alaska State Trooper Investigator Mark Granda holds up a Browning BAR 7 mm rifle with scope that John N. Marvin, Jr. allegedly used to shoot Hoonah officers Matthew Tokuoka and Anthony Wallace. Granda showed the rifle during his testimony Saturday in Marvin’s trial.

Trial continues on Monday in the case of John Marvin, Jr. who’s accused of causing the deaths of Hoonah police officers Matthew Tokuoka and Sgt. Anthony Wallace on August 28, 2010.

Some of the people involved during the trial include public defender Eric Hedland who has been appointed as Marvin’s attorney.

District Attorney Dave Brower is prosecuting the case. Sgt. Michelyn Manrique, supervising investigator, is assisting him at the prosecutor’s table with evidence management.

Superior Court Judge David George from Sitka is presiding over the trial.

Other court participants and witnesses during the trial include:

John Millan, who was the chief of police in Hoonah, and Arlen Skaflestad who served as a reserve officer during the shooting. William Wells witnessed part of the shooting from his apartment at Mary’s Inn.

Debbie Greene is the mother of Sgt. Anthony Wallace and Haley Tokuoka is the widow of officer Matthew Tokuoka.

Physician’s Assistant Jeff Chelmo, former Hoonah officer Paul Comolli, and EMT Wilfred ‘Bill’ Wolfe assisted with the care and treatment of the officers in the clinic following the shooting.

Alaska State Trooper Andrew Adams served as an investigator following the shooting.

Juneau Police Officers Tonya James, Terry Allen, and Kevin Fermin were among those who responded to Hoonah or Bartlett Regional Hospital following the shooting.

Alaska State Trooper Paul Wegrzyn was among the contingent of officers who arrived in Hoonah shortly after the shooting.

Saturday’s trial session

Friday’s trial session


Recent headlines

Matt Miller October 29, 20125:45 pm

Another update and typo fix to an earlier entry: A juror, one of three women on the panel, did not return to the courtroom after the last break. Now down to 13.

Prosecution wants to call Sgt. Michelyn Manrique next to the stand. But her testimony may be long. Jury is being excused for the day just a little early.

Matt Miller October 29, 20125:41 pm

Here’s another bit of courtroom sound. This was actually recorded on Friday when Alaska State Trooper Paul Wegrzyn took the stand to describe being called to Hoonah and setting up positions around the suspected-shooter’s house.

Wegrzyn says he saw a figure emerge out of one the front windows, but then it appeared to retreat moments later when Wegrzyn issued a certain command (Refer to Friday’s blog at:

Wegrzyn probably startled most of the people in the courtroom when he did this (Warning: loud audio!):

I know he certainly got my attention. I initially thought that my audio recorder was damaged as a result.

Matt Miller October 29, 20125:30 pm

More on testimony by Johanna Dybdahl: She was asked to leave after she brought up the electricity issue. His appearance had changed in the last year.

She says she saw him several times on occasion, but no more conversation between the two of them.

He was letting his hair grow out.

Under cross, Dybdahl felt that John needed help. “He was walking a tightrope” mentally.

(Fixed earlier typo)

Matt Miller October 29, 20124:49 pm

This is another picture shown to jurors on Saturday of more evidence found on Front Street in Hoonah at the shooting scene.

The bag on the left apparently contains toy cars and other toy items favored by one of the Tokuoka children. It suggests that one of the children either was holding it outside an open door or window, or that Sgt. Anthony Wallace was holding the bag when he was shot.

Matt Miller October 29, 20124:44 pm

Here’s a picture from Saturday which I thought I had posted earlier today during the testimony of Paul Johanson.

This is a slug that Johanson found near Haley Tokuoka during a vigil at the shooting scene. Without alerting Haley, he picked it up and walked over to give the slug to a Trooper. The spent bullet apparently remained at the scene since the shooting. It’s still unclear if it simply hit the ground or if it passed through one of the two officers.

I just noticed that a bunch of blog entries from today’s trial have already disappeared. The likely reason is because of maintenance on our webservers today.

Matt Miller October 29, 20124:10 pm

Juror was simply excused.

Judge George let the rest of the jury go home a little early. He promised starting tomorrow’s session at 8:30 for real.

Matt Miller October 29, 20123:54 pm

He reports that he did not hear anything from Wallace or Tokuoka about how they were shot or who shot them in August 2010.

More on the 2009 incident: two taser barbs in thigh and other (third) was near belt line. Three officers holding him down and Budkey did not recognize who it was.

Hedland is cross-examining Budkey about the 2009 incident (lots of shouting and profanity during that struggle with officers). Marvin just leaned over and whispered something to Hedland. That’s the first time that I have observed him assisting his attorney so far during this trial.

Matt Miller October 29, 20123:45 pm

Chris Budkey (sic?) was part of an ambulance crew called out in 2009 to remove three taser barbs after a struggle between Marvin and Hoonah police.

Special instruction to jury from Judge George now: This evidence is only being allowed as part of evaluation of Marvin’s state of mind in August 2010.

Matt Miller October 29, 20123:10 pm

We have to clear out of courtroom. John Marvin wants to use the restroom too. Bench conference now underway with jury out.

Matt Miller October 29, 20123:09 pm

Dybdahl excused. Break called. Likely one more prosecution witness for today…

Matt Miller October 29, 20122:57 pm

She visited John Marvin a several months before the shooting incident and offered to help get power restored. Marvin believed that Hoonah Police Department cut off his power. He told her it would be best if she and the children would not be around. Not safe.

Matt Miller October 29, 20122:50 pm

She had two young children with John Marvin. He sent money to help with expenses. Last time he worked full-time was at the liquor store.

Matt Miller October 29, 20122:49 pm

She was married to John Marvin in 1990, divorced about 1995. Last spoke with him about January 2010.

Matt Miller October 29, 20122:48 pm

Johanna Dybdahl was just called to the stand. Bench conference or side-bar…

Matt Miller October 29, 20122:42 pm

Brower has just presented evidence of a bullet fragment found in Sgt. Wallace’s underwear (They showing pictures of the blood-stained underwear with the bullet fragment still intact).

Matt Miller October 29, 20122:39 pm

Picture of prosecution’s evidence cart that was taken during trial on Saturday.

Trooper Bartlett was just shown pictures of some of the contents of those evidence bags.

Matt Miller October 29, 20122:33 pm

Bartlett also observed autopsy of Sgt. Wallace that was done by a different doctor. Two bullet fragments recovered.

Matt Miller October 29, 20122:27 pm

Trooper Scott Bartlett, who observed the autopsy of Officer Tokuoka, has taken the stand. He’s describing the chain of custody of the recovered fragments.

John Marvin is wearing what appears to be a new, dark striped sweater with tan or light pants. He seems to be fairly attentive today. He’s listening or watching testimony by witnesses.

Matt Miller October 29, 20122:15 pm

Multiple bruising around the entry area. Fragments recovered.

(I can see some of the autopsy pictures from my seat in the gallery as Dr. Raven turns them around for viewing of all jury members, but I don’t think it’s appropriate to try taking a picture.)

Matt Miller October 29, 20122:10 pm

Multiple (bullet) fragments found inside the chest. Bullets entered upper left and went to the left. Damaged soft tissue, diaphragm, liver, gall bladder, right kidney. Fractures of the ribs. Cause of death was two gun shot wounds to the chest.

She’s showing autopsy pictures to the jury so that members of the gallery cannot see them.

Matt Miller October 29, 20122:06 pm

Dr. Katherine Raven, Chief Medical Examiner for the State of Alaska, is explaining the autopsy process. She did the autopsy on Officer Tokuoka. Two gun shot wounds to the chest.

Matt Miller October 29, 20121:48 pm

We reconvened at about 1:35. Mike Lockabey of Wrangell, reserve officer, has taken the stand. He’s describing being recruited to stand watch overnight on Front Street between the Misty Bay Lodge and Mary’s Inn. He says he saw some movement in the upstairs window on the south side of John Marvin’s house.

Chilling comment: “He’s got a scope on us.” Lockabey reports momentarily pulling back when he spots an ‘optic’ in the window.

Matt Miller October 29, 20121:44 pm

Many of the same potential jurors who endured nearly three full days of jury selection in the John Marvin case before the jury was actually seated are back. They’re all crammed into another courtroom here at Dimond Courthouse for jury selection in a Skagway assault case.

“Really, again?” That’s what I imagine some of them are thinking as they go through the process all over again. Perhaps they should get some sort of dispensation because of all the time they already spent here doing the first go-around.

Matt Miller October 29, 201210:04 am

Granda says he doesn’t recall if what appeared to be blood on the Tokuoka vehicle was tested by the crime lab. He reports using luminol, a chemical agent to illuminate blood on the Front Street pavement a few days after the shooting. But it had already rained in Hoonah. Hedland is now quizzing Granda about his report of blood and/or body tissue found on the left side, right rear side, and hood of Wallace’s patrol vehicle.

“You don’t know whose blood or tissue?”


Granda says they did a laser trajectory analysis from defendant’s house to the shooting scene.

Under continued cross examination, Granda is being questioned about sending up only a few of the weapons at the crime scene up to the Crime Lab.

On redirect, DA Dave Brower is getting him to explain the use of the laser trajectory kit to determine the possible flight path of the bullets.

Matt Miller October 29, 20129:19 am

Granda is being quizzed about the collection of 7mm cartridges on the second floor.

“Dozens of them?”

“Sounds about right.”

7mm cartridges are believed to have come from a Browning BAR that was allegedly used in the shooting.

Granda does not know if the seized computers were forensically examined . He doesn’t remember seeing the rifle rest found inside.

Hedland has just brought out the second floor house plan drawn by Granda (see Saturday’s blog for day 6) as he continues questioning him about the possible presence of shell casings.

Matt Miller October 29, 20129:08 am

Jury back in at 9:06. Investigator Mark Granda is back on the stand for cross-examination by defense attorney Eric Hedland.

We were just let back into the courtroom after an undisclosed discussion between judge and attorneys. Juror issue?

Matt Miller October 29, 20128:51 am

Another reporter and I are encouraged to leave the courtroom as the defendant is brought up from the courthouse’s holding cell with waist and leg shackles. I’ve watched John Marvin being brought up before in prison garb and shackles for pre-trial hearings. But the issue now is whether current photographs could prejudice members of the jury if they happen to see them.

Matt Miller October 29, 20128:41 am

What’s that line from the movie ‘Office Space’?

“Did you ever have a case of The Mondays?”

After one of the hearings is done quickly, the JS officer escorts two defendants out of the courtroom in a chain gang: “It’s Monday. We’re just trying to get through it.”

Matt Miller October 29, 20128:35 am

“I think we’re just short a DA,” offered a Judicial Services officer. “We got four courtrooms going on at one time, your honor.”

Matt Miller October 29, 20128:33 am

A slight delay for today’s start. Judge David George is waiting for a prosecutor and defendants to arrive for two short unrelated hearings scheduled for 8:15. It’s 8:33 now.

Matt Miller October 29, 20125:14 am

Here’s a portion of an interview that investigators conducted with John N. Marvin, Jr. on August 30, 2010. This segment was played back in court on Saturday. District Attorney Dave Brower is the extraneous voice near the start asking jurors if they can hear the audio.