What should have been a routine arrest ended in tragedy and left residents of the small village of Tanana in shock.
Two Alaska troopers from the TV reality show “Alaska State Troopers” were shot and killed on May 1, 2014. Sgt. Patrick "Scott" Johnson, 45, and Trooper Gabriel Rich, 26, were on duty when tragedy happened. They had arrived in the small village of Tanana to arrest Arvin Kangas.
At that time, Arvin was charged with assault and driving with a revoked license. According to Alaska Dispatch, Arvin became furious when someone didn’t pay him $150 for a couch. So, he went to retrieve the couch from the person who allegedly bought the couch. He then threatened some of the Tanana residents and they called the village’s public safety officer, (VPSO) Mark Haglin. Authorities report that Arvin drove by the officer’s house and pointed a shotgun at him.
According to News Miner, the troopers arrived at Arvin’s residence. Somehow, they got into a scuffle and Sgt. Patrick Johnson, Trooper Gabriel Rich and Arvin went inside the house.
Arvin’s son, Nathanial Kangas 19, shot and killed the two troopers in the house, according to Col. James Cockrell in a written statement. He went on to say, “It’s believed that Nathanial used a semi-automatic rifle during the shooting.”
Col. James Cockrell continued to report that, Nathanial Kangas was arrested for the murder of Sgt. Patrick Johnson and Trooper Gabriel Rich shortly after the shooting incident. Although he has not been formally charged at the time of this writing, he faces two charges of first-degree murder for the deaths of the two troopers and he faces a single charge of third-degree assault for “actions against VPSO Mark Haglin.”
Arvin surrendered himself later that night to police officers surrounding his house. He was arrested and charged with the previous charges against him.
It is a sad time in the little village of Tanana and in the city of Fairbanks. Our thoughts and prayers are with the families and friends of Sgt. Patrick "Scott" Johnson and Trooper Gabriel Rich.