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Driver in 2016 crash faces homicide charge

Man was driving drunk in fatal crash near Hoonah, according to indictment

A Juneau man faces charges of manslaughter, criminally negligent homicide and driving under the influence dating back to a 2016 car crash that killed another man.

The Juneau grand jury indicted Dylan J. Wiard, currently 26, on the charges this past Thursday. The car crash took place June 24, 2016, near Hoonah, according to charging documents, and claimed the life of 23-year-old Jeffrey Turner. According to reports at the time, Turner was from Tampa Bay, Florida.

Wiard was flown to Bartlett Regional Hospital, according to reports at the time, for his injuries from the rollover crash. According to the indictment, Wiard’s blood-alcohol content was above the legal limit of 0.08 percent within four hours of the crash.

Manslaughter is a class A felony, criminally negligent homicide is a class B felony and driving under the influence is a class A misdemeanor. There is no court date set yet, according to electronic court records. According to the indictment, the grand jury interviewed eight witnesses and took nine search warrants into account.

Assistant District Attorney Bailey Woolfstead declined to comment on the case and why it took so long for an indictment to be filed, citing an Alaska Rule of Professional Conduct ethics guideline.

That wasn’t the only indictment handed down Thursday. Sharon Lorraine E. Harris, 26, was indicted on one charge of third-degree assault for holding a knife to a woman’s throat downtown. According to a report from Juneau Police Officer Alexander Smith, the altercation started with somebody knocking over a newspaper stand.

A woman knocked over a newspaper stand, according to Smith’s report, and Harris saw it and got angry. Harris went over to the woman, according to the report, and held a knife to her neck. A friend of Harris’ grabbed her and pulled her away, according to charging documents. When police arrived, according to charging documents, Harris was acting erratically and was asking to be Tazed. Police handcuffed her and put her in the police car in order to interview witnesses, according to Smith’s report.

Third-degree assault is a class C felony.

A 41-year-old man was indicted on charges of second- and third-degree assault for an instance of domestic violence on July 28. Second-degree assault is a class B felony and third-degree assault is a class C felony.

According to a report from JPD Officer Hannah Malone, the man was angry at his roommate and partner of three years because she had changed the wifi password, the victim told police. The victim told Malone that the man had thrown her on the floor and started “stomping” on her face and hitting her with a metal bucket. The man also stomped on the woman’s leg, she told police, and then strangled her.

The grand jury indicted William Robert Whittington, 36, for one charge of third-degree assault for an incident that occurred in Haines. According to charging documents, a witness called police on the afternoon of July 29 to report that he had witnessed a man in a black hoodie slashing tires on Main Street in Haines.

The caller said he chased the man down the street, according to charging documents, telling the man to stop slashing tires. The man in the black hoodie turned toward the caller and pulled out a gun, the caller reported according to charging documents. This, according to the police report, left the victim “freaked out.”

The victim told police that he was scared at the time and has been scared ever since, according to the police report. Police arrived on the scene, according to charging documents, and searched the man in the hoodie. They found a semi-automatic handgun in his waistband and a knife in his pocket, according to the police report, and then identified the man as Whittington and took him to jail.

Third-degree assault is a class C felony.


• Contact reporter Alex McCarthy at 523-2271 or amccarthy@juneauempire.com. Follow him on Twitter at @akmccarthy.


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