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Robert D Kowalski, age 50, entered his plea of not guilty in Superior Court today. He was indicted on the charges of Murder by a Grand Jury in September of last year.
On Monday, Cold Case Investigators traveled to Montana to escort Robert D. Kowalski back to Alaska. On March 1st, he was deposited at Lemon Creek Correctional Facility in Juneau on a $1,000,000 warrant.
Kowalski waived his extradition while incarcerated in that state where he was serving time for an unrelated 2008 murder. He was indicted in September of last year for the murder of Sandra M Perry in 1996. According to the indictment, the murder took place in a Yakutat Lodge where the two of them were vacationing from the state of Washington.
Kowalski was serving time for the murder of Lorraine Kay Morin. The case of her death was so eerily similar to the circumstances of Perry’s death.
Kowalski was never arrested or charged for the death of Perry. There was very little evidence of foul play in the Yakutat murder other than an ear witness that was next door to the room Perry and Kowalski shared. That witness said that he heard what sounded like an arguement prior to hearing a shot and then silence.
Kowalski admitted to being in the room at the time and said that the two of them had heard what they thought was a bear and so Kowalski retrieved a firearm. It was then according to Kowalski that he tripped over the carpet as Perry was getting up from the bed and the weapon went off striking her in the face.
Sandra Perry was a single mother of three living outside Seattle.
It was the shooting death of Lorraine Kay Morin theat alerted the Alaskan officials to take another look at the death of Perry. Like Perry, Morin died from a gunshot wound to the face. She was found in her home on March 16th, 2008. She was discovered by Montana authorities sitting in her living room chair. She was a mother of six.
In that case, Kowalski told a roomate of the shooting, in turn, the roomate alerted authorities. When he was later questioned by authorities, he stated that he accidently shot Morin with a pistol at close range as he was falling back in a chair. Morin, like Perry, was shot in the face. Like the Perry case, the Morin shooting was apparently preceded by an arguement.
After the shooting, Kowalski spent several hours with the body in both cases. The murder in Montana was followed by a 31 hour armed stand-off with a SWAT team. In court, Kowalski pleaded Guilty to Mitigated Deliberate Homicide in the Montana case and received a 50 year sentence with 10 suspended. He was serving time in the case when he was extradited by Alaskan authorities.
During his stay in Montana, Kowalski had several scrapes with the law over violent offenses.
Although Judge Louis Menendez scheduled a jury trial in the case beginning in late May, Kowalski’s attorney, Eric Hedland, said that that date was overly optimistic. Prosecution for the state said that the Attorney General’s office would not object to a fall trial date.
Alaska State Troopers ask that any tips or leads pertaining to the case be called in to (907) 269-5611.