UPDATE: Victim in Aurora Paint Co. homicide identified

APD arrests person-of-interest in Aurora Paint Company death investigation case, at Cheney Lake. (Photo by Albert Lutan / KTUU)
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ANCHORAGE (KTUU) - Update - Sept. 13, 2017, 10 a.m.:
Anchorage police identify the Aurora Paint Company case victim as 65-year-old Gregory Gill. Next-of-kin has been notified, according to APD spokesperson MJ Thim.

It still remains unclear what connection the victim has to the business, Aurora Paint Company.

Additionally, Thim said the department is now officially calling the investigation, into a dead body found in a local Anchorage business, to be a homicide.

Prior, authorities would only specify that it was a "death investigation." The cause of death has not yet been released, but police say that it will be, following the results of autopsy examination.

This is an ongoing story and will be updated with further information.

Update - Sept. 12, 2017, 9:35 a.m.:
Anchorage police identify Monday's suspect of the stolen white 2006 Kia Optima as 27-year-old Randall Igou.

He was arrested and faces "multiple charges including Vehicle Theft," according to APD spokesperson MJ Thim.

Igou is also considered a person of interest in the ongoing Aurora Paint Company death investigation case.

Police are still asking the public to come forth with any information related to the Aurora Paint Company case, specifically surveillance video footage. Dispatch can be contacted at (907) 786-8900.

Update - Sept. 11, 2017, 3 p.m.:
Several police vehicles were observed with their lights flashing convening upon the area surrounding Cheney Lake at 11:46 a.m. on Monday. APD spokesperson MJ Thim confirmed that this situation was "related to the Aurora Paint Company case" which is a death investigation.

"So this is a great example of community policing," said Thim. "We sent out a Nixle for the locate of the white Kia… and shortly thereafter we got a call from a person saying that they saw the vehicle at Island Street and Muldoon Road."

Thim reported that when officers responded to the scene, the vehicle of interest took off. Responding officers then followed the vehicle to the 2400-block of Foxhall Circle.

At this point, Thim said the driver and sole occupant exited the vehicle and ran towards Cheney Lake. Officers pursued on foot.

When the suspect ran "neck-deep" into the water, Thim said APD contacted the Anchorage Fire Department for assistance in case that a water rescue was needed. However, the rescue was not necessary.

Instead, police were able to retrieve the suspect by entering the water themselves and take him into custody for questioning, according to Thim. Officers will question the suspect about "what he knows in reference to what happened at the Aurora Paint Company."

Thim told KTUU that APD does not know the suspect's connection to the vehicle of interest or potential connection to the death investigation case, if any.

Thim stated that this individual is a suspect in relation to fleeing from officers and driving the white 2006 Kia Optima. However, he clarified that this individual is a person of interest in the death investigation.

Thim also said he has no additional details about the Aurora Paint Company case, but he confirmed it is still classified as a "death investigation."

Near Baxter Road, one witness who was driving in the area told KTUU that they saw a police officer with a gun drawn in the street. And another witness who was fishing at Cheney Lake told KTUU that police were telling the suspect to "stop," and that they had their guns pointed at the suspect as he fled into the water. However, Thim reported that "no shots were fired" and the fleeing suspect was not injured.

The fishing witness also said that the suspect "had a carrying case, like a bag, and he dropped it into the water, so I guess that's why they (APD) got it taped off over there."

The department asks that the public avoid Cheney Lake Park as officers conduct a criminal investigation. Access has been closed off to portions of the park.

Police are also asking the public to come forth with any information related to the Aurora Paint Company case, specifically surveillance video footage. Dispatch can be contacted at (907) 786-8900.

Original Story - Sept. 11, 2017, 10:45 a.m.:
A man was found dead inside an Anchorage business early Monday morning, and now police are asking for the public's help on identifying a vehicle that may have a connection to the incident.

The victim was found by an employee at Aurora Paint Company at 8:50 a.m. Monday. That person has not yet been identified, due to police policy requiring officers to notify next of kin before publicly identifying victims.

Anchorage Police Department spokesperson MJ Thim said, "In terms of whether this is being investigated as a homicide or something self-inflicted, we are still trying to figure out what happened at this time." The cause of death has not been released.

The employee who located the victim had just gotten to work when "they found the doors open and the lights on," according to Thim. It is not yet clear how the victim entered the building or whether it was locked prior to their arrival.

It is not known if the victim was another employee who was scheduled to open the location for business Monday morning. However, Thim said that the business opens at 7:30 a.m., and that the employee found the body "behind the counter."

The employee then called police and APD officers responded to the location. During questioning, the employee identified a white 2006 Kia Optima as being something out of place.

"Investigators were asking if the employee noticed anything different, and he identified the white Kia as having been there previously, but was now missing," Thim said.

In a community alert issued by APD, the Kia, which has the Alaska license plate of EZA 725, was "believed to have been at the business prior to the employee arriving to work this morning."

Police are asking the public to come forth with any information related to this incident, specifically surveillance video footage.


Crime scene at the Aurora Paint Co. (Photo by Albert Lutan / KTUU)
White Kia (left) is the vehicle-of-interest from the APD Nixle alert. (Photo by Albert Lutan / KTUU)