Five Other Alaskans Had Close Calls With Serial Killer Israel Keyes
Newly released interviews reveal near misses
ANCHORAGE - Three unknown people, including an Anchorage police officer, were nearly shot by Israel Keyes at Point Woronzof last year, according to APD and the FBI.
Authorities said they take Keyes at his word, because everything he told them that they've been able to corroborate they have corroborated, and nothing Keyes has said has yet been disproved.
From what we understand from information released by authorities, Keyes came within seconds of an attempted triple homicide last year, and was considering killing in Eagle River, as well.
Keyes told investigators that he rode his bicycle past Earthquake Park, apparently to Point Woronzof, with the intention of killing.
It was an evening in April or May of 2011, just weeks before he left on a trip during which he killed a couple in Vermont.
Keyes said he had a rifle with a silencer, and he watched from the woods as a couple sat in a car at a turnout.
A police officer turned up to tell the couple that the park was closed. Keyes said, "...almost pulled the trigger even with him there, and that would have been, it would have got really ugly really fast."
But then a second patrol car arrived. "It could've got ugly but fortunately for the cop guy, his back-up showed up."
Police Chief Mark Mew said: "I don't think he intended to capture anybody or abduct anyone here. He just wanted to shoot people and leave, mainly to test out his equipment."
Mew said they haven’t able to determine who the officers were, as there were not two of them on the radio from that location around that time.
Also that spring, Keyes was again on a bicycle, staking out the North Fork trailhead at Eagle River, where he considered killing a couple but decided it was too much work, possibly because their weight would have presented difficulty in disposing of the bodies.
"Israel Keyes didn't kidnap and kill people because he was crazy,” said APD Detective Monique Doll. “He didn't kidnap and kill people because his deity told him to or because he had a bad childhood. Israel Keyes did this because he got an immense amount of enjoyment out of it, much like an addict gets an immense amount of enjoyment out of drugs."
Investigators say he finally lost his self-control with the abduction and murder of 18-year-old barista Samantha Koenig.
"Mr. Keyes told us he was deciding as he walked up to the coffee kiosk that if the person that was working inside the coffee kiosk did not have a vehicle, he was only going to rob the place and walk away, because he did not want to transport his victim in his vehicle," Doll said.
Samantha did not have a car.
"He had drawn his line in the sand, and he couldn't help himself. He said he took her anyway."
A methodical serial killer who gave into compulsion.
Investigators said Keyes tortured animals in his youth, but they did not give details.
They said they would have liked to talk to Keyes more than the approximately 40 hours they spent with him.
They said it was all up to Keyes; that they made at least one request a week to talk to him. He stopped talking for two months after a media report in Vermont linked him to the killing of the couple there.
And the media has been getting our knuckles rapped by some viewers and readers for the amount of coverage being given to this story since Keyes was found dead of a suicide on December 2.
Investigators said there are good reasons for the slow rollout of the information they obtained from the interviews with Keyes.
"First of all, there's an awful lot of material, and I don't know that we can prepare all of it in one day, because we have to cut tapes, and we have to go to the family, and we have to do all these things, make sure we're not getting in the way of any legal issues,” Mew said. “So all of those things are kind of slowing us down a little bit."
But they said it's important to keep the story in the media so that a timeline of Keyes' movements and methods can be matched up with missing persons cases across the country.