ANCHORAGE (KTUU) - Tylan Fely, 34, has been jailed for his alleged role in the killing of his wife and daughter over the weekend. As of press time, he's facing 16 different charges, including murder in the first and second degrees - but it isn't the first time he's been accused of taking a life.
In 2005, Fely, then 20, was jailed for the fatal shooting of Mark Smith in Anchorage. The death was over what appeared to be a road rage incident.
"Mr. Smith had made some gestures out of his car that looked like, 'Hey, do you want to drink with us?'" said Anchorage Deputy District Attorney Brittany Dunlop. "'Drink,' hand-to-mouth gesture. And Mr. Fely took that as an obscene gesture and followed him into a residential neighborhood, and then ended up shooting - getting out of his vehicle, blocking him in, and shooting - and killing Mr. Smith."
Fely was eventually convicted of manslaughter for shooting Smith, sentenced to 10 years with two suspended.
"We had no doubt that Fely was the aggressor, was looking for a confrontation," said Fmr. Anchorage Police Department Homicide Unit Sgt. Slawomir Markiewicz, "and took it out on Mark Smith. The victim didn't do anything to deserve what happened to him."
Almost 15 years after the senseless shooting that shortened a life, Fely is accused of taking two more: those of his own wife, Cecilia Tuuaga, and 13-year-old daughter, their bodies found in a burning sport utility vehicle over the weekend.
"The vehicle was ultimately linked to Ms. Tuuaga," Deputy District Attorney Dunlop said, "and the investigation went from there."
As he faces 16 charges for their deaths, including murder and tampering with evidence, court documents serve as a record of horrific details. The mother and daughter, for example, had not yet been positively identified upon the release of charging documents due to the extent of their injuries.
In the meantime, investigators who were on the 2005 case said that the incident already stood out because of the general circumstances surrounding the shooting, and added that the killings over the past weekend - as shocking as they may be - perhaps aren't all that surprising.
"Two young lives wasted for a very trivial reason," Markiewicz said of the early manslaughter case, "or for no reason at all, for some stupid misunderstanding or because someone was looking for trouble that night."
Fely's bail was set on December 2 at $500,000 cash appearance, $500,000 cash performance, and the requirement that he have a third-party custodian. His next court date is a pre-indictment hearing on December 5.
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