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Matthew F. Smith

Stories by Matthew F. Smith

  • Money

    Black Friday sales start before the turkey has time to cool

    by Matthew F. Smith on Nov 29, 18:00

    ANCHORAGE – Millions of Americans spent “Black Friday” hunting for deals, but for many, the shopping started as early as the night of Thanksgiving. “We were here last night and got a TV,” said Best Buy shopper Cris Sexton on Friday morning. “And then we came back today and got a laptop and headphones.” Best […]

  • Local

    Zero injuries in duplex fire leaves one family with renewed sense of thankfulness

    by Matthew F. Smith on Nov 27, 19:26

    ANCHORAGE – A Tuesday night fire tore through a Russian Jack duplex, leaving six people homeless and Edna DeJesus wondering what she and her son will do with her grandkids for Thanksgiving. Firefighters said fumes from a garage fuel tank are the likely culprit of the blaze after a nearby boiler kicked in, igniting the […]

  • Local

    Man arrested in Tuesday assault of Bartlett student

    by Matthew F. Smith on Nov 26, 18:16

    ANCHORAGE – Police arrested 21-year-old Rodney Stevens for assaulting a female student on her way to school Tuesday morning. Lt. Anthony Henry, the commander of school-based officers known as Student Resource Officers (SRO), said the student was on her way to Bartlett High around 8:30 a.m. when she noticed a Native man walking behind her. […]

  • Local

    After deadly year for Alaska aviation, a renewed focus on training

    by Matthew F. Smith on Nov 25, 19:25

    ANCHORAGE – Nine seconds are all that stood between pilot Tyler Renner and almost certain death. “Nine seconds,” Renner said Saturday. “You get one choice, and you don’t get to change your mind.” Those nine seconds were captured by a friend’s iPhone in July 2012, when a routine takeoff from Lake Konovolof, just north of […]

  • Local

    Icy conditions freeze traffic on Valley roads

    by Matthew F. Smith on Nov 22, 20:39

    WASILLA – Alaska’s no stranger to cold, wet weather, but the black ice and freezing rain along the Knik Goose Bay Road (KGB) had some Wasilla residents calling Friday’s weather some of the worst they’ve ever seen. “We’re used to the snow, and we’re used to the icy roads, but this is just a straight up ice skating […]

  • Local

    Anchorage man arrested for producing, possessing child pornography

    by Matthew F. Smith on Nov 22, 11:09

    ANCHORAGE – Police say 44-year-old Kevin Callander used an iPhone to film himself sexually abusing two young girls he knew, all while collecting dozens of similar videos from the internet. Callander was arrested Wednesday and faces 13 charges related to possessing, distributing, and producing child pornography. He remains in police custody without bail. His arrest […]

  • Local

    Safety patrol goes 24/7 with new funds

    by Matthew F. Smith on Nov 21, 12:57

    ANCHORAGE – In passing a $467 million budget, the Anchorage Assembly earmarked more than half a million dollars for a program aimed at helping some of the city’s most vulnerable. For almost two decades, the Anchorage Safety Patrol (ASP) received about $200,000 in funding from the Southcentral Foundation. Like many entities and programs receiving federal […]

  • Health

    Obama’s promise to keep old health plans meets uncertainty in Alaska

    by Matthew F. Smith on Nov 16, 2:16

    ANCHORAGE – It’s a promise President Barack Obama made often about the Affordable Care Act, commonly known as Obamacare: “If you like your plan, you can keep it.” The president on Thursday attempted to make good on that promise, by allowing insurance companies the option to keep offering plans — that would have otherwise been […]

  • Politics

    Parnell rejects Medicaid expansion in Alaska

    by Matthew F. Smith on Nov 15, 1:06

    ANCHORAGE – Governor Sean Parnell on Friday rejected an expansion of Medicaid in Alaska, forgoing billions of dollars in federal aid through 2020 that would have insured more than 43,000 Alaskans. Calling the existing Medicaid program “unsustainable,” Parnell pointed to a state-commissioned report by the Lewin Group that looked at the state’s costs through 2020 under two […]

  • Money

    For seasonal businesses, snow is white gold

    by Matthew F. Smith on Nov 11, 1:34

    ANCHORAGE – The first snowfall of the year blanketed the city Sunday, and while it may have caused headaches for drivers—to the tune of more than 150 collisions and distressed vehicle calls to police—the snow was white gold for seasonal businesses looking forward to winter. “It’s great!” said a smiling Steve Remme with Hilltop Ski […]

  • Local

    Fairview fire displaces dozens, leaves four families homeless

    by Matthew F. Smith on Nov 08, 23:59

    ANCHORAGE – An early morning fire in Fairview has turned out every resident of a 28-room multiplex. The Friday fire caused heavy damage to three rooms on the third floor, as well as the building’s roof. Firefighters said smoke damage permeated throughout the third floor. “The initial calls came in about 3 a.m., multiple calls […]

  • Local

    Potential second victim in Providence sexual abuse case

    by Matthew F. Smith on Nov 08, 23:46

    ANCHORAGE – Court records reveal there may be another underage victim of 28-year-old Allen Miller, the medical worker police arrested Monday and charged with sexually abusing a teenage girl under his care at Providence Hospital. New court documents show police may have taken a report about Miller months before his arrest. A complaint and affidavit […]

  • Local

    Caregiver charged with sexually abusing teen in hospital

    by Matthew F. Smith on Nov 06, 20:35

    ANCHORAGE – Police have arrested a medical professional they say sexually assaulted a teenage girl while she was in the hospital. The suspect, 28-year-old Allen Miller, is being held without bail after being arrested Monday. Miller worked as a patient care technician at Providence Alaska Medical Center. He was responsible for providing care to kids […]

  • Local

    Tennis court question delays Assembly action

    by Matthew F. Smith on Nov 06, 11:26

    ANCHORAGE—To build or not to build? That was the question before the Anchorage Assembly Tuesday night: Would it be nobler to use $10.5 million in state funds on new indoor tennis courts, or take arms against the slings and arrows of time and improve existing facilities? The municipality received $37 million from the Alaska State Legislature […]

  • Money

    Downtown food fight pits sandwich shop against food truck

    by Matthew F. Smith on Nov 05, 23:12

    ANCHORAGE – Mobile food trucks are an increasingly popular way to grab a bite to eat, but tensions are beginning to boil between a local restaurant and its four-wheeled competition. At the Brown Bag Sandwich Co. in downtown Anchorage, lunchtime often brings a steady flow of customers. Owner Antoine McLeod said Monday that on the […]

  • Health

    Food stamp cuts leave thousands of Alaskans with smaller grocery budgets

    by Matthew F. Smith on Oct 31, 0:07

    ANCHORAGE – Cuts to the federal food stamp program taking effect Friday will remove hundreds of dollars from the grocery budgets of thousands of Alaskans. The Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program, or SNAP, received billions in additional funding in 2009, part of the nation’s multi-billion dollar stimulus package. Those billions also came with an expiration date: […]

  • Local

    Serial ‘prowler’ targeting women in East Anchorage

    by Matthew F. Smith on Oct 23, 0:23

    ANCHORAGE — Police are calling a man breaking into women’s homes on the east side of town a prowler, and Tuesday said they fear he could become violent. Anchorage police said three related break-ins have occurred in the last month, in neighborhoods from southern Mountain View down to Northern Lights Boulevard. The most recent break-in […]

  • National

    Some lawmakers donating or refusing pay amid shutdown

    by Matthew F. Smith on Oct 02, 2:23

    As Congress continues the showdown over the shutdown, a growing number of senators and representatives are giving up their pay as more than 800,000 federal workers face furloughs without paychecks. The Washington Post has been tracking the 100 senators and the 435 house reps, each making at least the constitutionally mandated $174,000 a year from their […]

  • Local

    Spenard clean-up adds cameras

    by Matthew F. Smith on Sep 01, 16:55

    ANCHORAGE – It’s a unique neighborhood with a colorful past. The Spenard Community Council has been working to improve its slice of Midtown for years, and now it’s installing cameras on local businesses in an effort to curb chronic drunkenness and other street crime in the area. Just a decade ago, “there were ladies of […]

  • Local

    Prisons failed to protect against murderer Wade’s sexual assault, lawsuit alleges

    by Matthew F. Smith on Jul 15, 23:06

    ANCHORAGE – Failure to protect him from violent criminals, including Joshua Wade: that’s what the man known only in court documents as “B.F.S.” alleges the State of Alaska Department of Corrections is guilty of. He’s filed a lawsuit against DOC in civil court seeking $100,000 for pain and suffering. In the lawsuit, which has been […]