Man who attacked Iditarod mushers in 2016 race to be held in jail during Fairbanks restart
The man who attacked two mushers during the 2016 Iditarod sled dog race will spend this year’s race restart in jail, according to an Alaska Department of Corrections (DOC) spokesman.
Arnold Demoski, 27, was charged with reckless endangerment and two counts each of third-degree assault and reckless driving after he attacked mushers Jeff King and Aliy Zirkle with a snowmachine on the trail between Galena and Nulato, his hometown, on March 12, 2016.
The attacks claimed the life of King’s dog, Nash, and injured three other dogs from the two teams. Zirkle told race officials Demoski repeatedly charged her on the snowmachine, but Demoski, who admitted he was drunk at the time, said that he was turning around to check on her after passing her. Fellow musher Dallas Seavey later said Zirkle had used a trail marker to defend herself and her team from the attack.
Demoski turned himself in to authorities and said he regretted his actions after his arrest.
Demoski eventually pleaded guilty in December to lesser charges of fourth-degree assault, reckless endangerment and driving under the influence. He was sentenced to six months in prison, most of which was considered served.
DOC spokesman Corey Allen Young said Tuesday that Demoski was serving part of his sentence with electronic monitoring in Fairbanks. Young noted that Demoski’s sentence included a condition that he “not to be in any location where the Iditarod race passes through during the course of the race.”
“Since the race is restarting in Fairbanks this year, the plan is to remand him back to [Fairbanks Correctional Center] on Sunday and will place him back on [electronic monitoring] on Tuesday after all the racers have left town,” Young explained in an email.
According to online court records, Demoski was ordered in December to pay $36,697.15 in restitution. Another restitution judgment of $35,235.15 was issued on Feb. 23.
KTVA 11’s Shannon Riddle contributed to this report.
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