Alaska man gets 4 life terms in Coast Guard deaths


by Your Alaska Link News Team

A 63-year-old Kodiak man has been sentenced to four consecutive life terms after being convicted in the shooting deaths of two co-workers at a Coast Guard communications station on Kodiak Island.

James Wells was sentenced today in U.S. District Court in Anchorage.

Wells was found guilty in April by a federal jury in the 2012 deaths of Coast Guardsmen Petty Officer 1st Class James Hopkins and retired Chief Petty Officer Richard Belisle.

Wells spoke during his sentencing. He said a tragedy occurred, for which everyone has suffered. But he added: "I know I'm innocent of this crime."

Both widows of the victims also spoke, saying they hoped Wells "rots in hell."