Six Arrested in Murder of North Pole Man

AST reported on Friday that they have six suspects in custody in connection of the July 22nd murder of North Pole man 60-year-old Charles Baptiste.

An intense five-day investigation by Fairbanks police, the FBI, DEA, SDEU, and troopers culminated in the arrest of 38-year-old Joshua Erickson, Mealani Jones, age 36, Jerimiah Kinnish, 35, Kyle Morris, 19, and two 17-year-old juveniles.

It was found that Erickson and Jones enlisted two 17-year-old juveniles to aid them in the robbery of Baptiste and were also assisted by Kinnish andMorris. Then, on July 22nd, Erickson, Jones, Kinnish and the two juveniles went to Baptiste’s residence armed with firearms to rob the victim.

But, Baptiste confronted two of the suspects as they barged in with masks on and attempted to rob him and during the confrontation, sustained a gunshot. Another man who also resided in the residence, Wayne Daniel, age 50, also suffered wounds. The two suspects fled the scene immediately after.

Troopers were alerted of the Gianna’s Court incident in North Pole at 8:11 am. Troopers responded and the two victims were transported to the  Fairbanks Memorial Hospital. Just over six hours later, at 2:30 pm, troopers were advised that Baptiste had succumbed to his injuries.

The investigation carried out by the various agencies netted and arraigned Erickson by Thursday. Erickson was arraigned on charges of Murder II, Robbery I x2, Assault I, and Felon in Possession of a Firearm. Erickson is also on parole for the beating death of Darrell Cavaness in 2008. He was convicted of Criminally Negligent Homicide and received 13 years with two years suspended. Three years later, Chawn Summerall was sentenced to 20 years with nine suspended for assault in the same case.

Mealani Jones was arraigned in court on charges of Murder II, Robbery I x2, Assault I and being a Felon in Possession of a Firearm.Jerimiah Kinnish was arraigned on the same charges on Saturday. He is currently on mandatory parole for a felony drug conviction of possession with intent to distribute.

Kyle Morris was arraigned Saturday on the charge of Robbery I.

The two juveniles were remanded to the Fairbanks Youth Facility.

The investigation is continuing.