State Troopers Investigate Port Protection Murder

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by Russ Slaten

A man out of Southeast Alaska is charged with murder after Alaska State Troopers found a dead body on his boat.

39-year-old Ronald O'Neil of Port Protection was charged with murder in the second degree, tampering with evidence and DUI for operating a skiff while intoxicated.

State troopers arrived in Port Protection (about 70 miles southeast of Sitka) early morning monday, after receiving a call about a possible death on a houseboat.

Troopers allegedly found O'Neil intoxicated, driving one skiff, while towing another near Port Protection.

Troopers allegedly discovered the body of a male, tentatively identified as 54-year-old Tracy Simpson of Port Protection.

"It does take time with these types of investigations to make sure that we are thorough and we have the right facts in front of us, but so far, with what we do have, we felt that it is necessary to go forward with the charges," said Megan Peters, spokesperson for the Alaska State Troopers.

The body of Tracy Simpson was sent to the State Medical Examiner's Office for identity confirmation, and to determine the cause of death.

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