Thursday, October 21, 2010

The Investor murders

If you've lived in Southeast for very long, you've probably heard about the Investor murders.  In September of 1982, eight people on the Washington-based fishing boat Investor were murdered while the boat sat anchored just outside Craig (Prince of Wales Island).  When an attempt to scuttle the boat went awry, the murderer set fire to the vessel.  Although a suspect was eventually arrested, both trials ended without a conviction- and the Investor case is still the largest unsolved murder in Alaska state history.
Addiction counselor Michael McGuire has written a book about the Investor murders, based on his conversations with Larry Demmert Jr., who was a key trial witness.  Angels to Ashes: largest unsolved mass murder in Alaska history recounts some of the events leading up to the murder, and presents a fair amount of information that came up during the trials.  If you remember this case - or if you're intrigued by Alaskan crime in general - you might find this an interesting book.
NOTE:  I have not read this book, but I have gotten feedback from a couple of people who did read the book, including a journalist who is familiar with the background of the Investor case.  Apparently, this is not a well-written book.  It is chock full of typos and grammatical errors, it meanders around from subject to subject.  Other than Larry Demmert, it's difficult to tell who McGuire actually interviewed for this book, and what sources he used.  He doesn't pull any punches when it comes to his opinions, however, and he ends the book with a direct accusation of an Anchorage drug dealer. 
Journalistically, this book is more National Enquirer than New York Times, but if you're willing to make do until something more substantial comes along, then have at it.....

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