By Ted Land
Channel 2 News
2:16 PM AKDT, March 16, 2012
Who is Israel Keyes? On March 13, law enforcement in Texas arrested the 34-year-old as person of interest, according to Anchorage police.
Records show that Keyes spent at least a few years living and working in Alaska, and the Koenig family said they had never heard of him until March 15 when APD announced the arrest.
According to documents KTUU found, Keyes was a former Army Specialist who was praised for his work down in Fort Lewis, Washington.
He most recently worked as a general contractor here in Anchorage and his arrest on Tuesday was not his first.
According to APD, Israel Keyes is the owner of Keyes Construction, based in Anchorage.
"Foundations to finish work. Inside or out. I have the specialty tools and over ten years experience to get the job done right!" Keyes said on his website.
It appears to be a pretty small business and the address listed on the website is for a rented mailbox in a storefront along Arctic Boulevard, but and the phone number listed goes right to voice mail when calling.
Keyes posted on his website a certificate for the Army achievement medal, which was awarded for his expertise during live fire exercises.
The document states "Spec. Keyes performance reflects great credit upon himself, the first battalion, 5th infantry, and the United States Army."
Court records though revealed a more troubled past.
In 2001, Keyes pleaded guilty to driving under the influence on Fort Lewis and was sentenced to 24 hours in prison.
More recently in March 2012, a US attorney said Keyes committed access device fraud: meaning he's accused of making a transaction with someone else's access device, like a credit card, to receive payment for something one thousand dollars or greater.
The prosecutor said Keyes should be held because there is a serious risk he'll attempt to threaten, injure or intimidate prospective jurors.
As for a possible relationship between Samantha Koenig and Israel Keyes, a Koenig family spokesperson said they've never heard of the guy.
“No one has met him we don't know who he is we don't know what association he has with anybody, we don't know why he would take samantha if he did take Samantha,” Michelle Tasker , a Koenig family spokesperson, said in a statement.
Tasker said his arrest does not change much for the Koenig family as their focus remains on finding Samantha.
Anyone with information on Koenig's whereabouts or who has had contact with Keyes or associated with his business, Keyes Construction, since Jan. 1 is asked to call the FBI at 1-800-225-5324.
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