Less than two weeks after two troopers were killed during an arrest attempt in Tanana, another Alaska law enforcement officer has come under fire while serving in the line of duty.
Ambler VPO Jeffrey Melton responded to a call Saturday regarding intoxicated and belligerent Harry Morena, 34. When VPO Melton arrived at the Morena residence, Morena reportedly yelled “One shot, one kill”, then fired a shot from a 30-30 lever action rifle through the door in VPO Melton’s direction.
Morena shot at least twice more at VPO Melton as he retreated from the residence. Several shots were reportedly fire through the open door and windows, as well as the walls of the residence.
A friend of Morena’s attempted to intervene over the VHF radio, asking to talk to him, to which Morena responded with assurances that he only wanted to kill VPO Melton. The unidentified friend arrived at the residence and convinced Morena to surrender his weapon, allowing VPO Melton to take him into custody.
Troopers executed a warrant soon after the shooting, and found further evidence against Morena for manufacturing homebrewed alcohol at the residence and selling it in a dry area. Morena was remanded to the Kotzebue Jail Facility for arraignment and charged with second degree Attempted Murder, Manufacturing of Alcohol, Possession of Ingredients for Homebrew, four counts of Misconduct Involving a Weapon, and two counts of third degree Assault.
No one was injured during the incident, including Morena’s blind and deaf mother, who appeared unaware of the incident.