Kasilof man arrested after Saturday chase

After a chase along Kalifornsky Beach Road, Alaska State Troopers arrested Clayton Nelson, 23, of Kasilof on Saturday after a Friday incident in which he’d allegedly attempted to stab a man with a spear.

Around 7:27 p.m. on Friday, Soldotna Police Sergeant Duane Kant responded to a 911 call from the Soldotna McDonald’s parking lot, where the caller told Kant he’d been driving Nelson’s black Ford pickup truck with Nelson in the passenger seat. Th caller said he’d been helping Nelson, whose license was suspended after a DUI conviction earlier in the summer.

“As they pulled off the Sterling Highway into the Soldotna McDonald’s parking lot, (the caller) stated that Nelson ‘lost it’ and attempted to stab him in the upper torso with a spear,” according to the case’s probable cause statement, based on Kant’s observations. “(The caller) described the spear as a knife attached to a length of wooden closet rod dowel. (The caller) said he was placed in fear by Nelson’s actions and avoided being stabbed by scooting around in the seat and then exiting the pickup while the pickup was still in motion.”

According to Kant’s statement, the victim said he’d attempted to grab his cell phone while leaving the truck, but Nelson had kept him from doing so. As a result, Nelson was charged with theft in the fourth degree in addition to assault in the third degree — a class c felony with a maximum penalty of up to two years imprisonment for a first conviction. Nelson wasn’t arrested because he had driven away before Kant arrived.

Law enforcers next saw Nelson around 1 p.m Saturday, when Alaska State Trooper Pierre Pages was driving toward Soldotna on Bridge Access Road and recognized the wanted black pickup driving the opposite direction, according to Pages’ affidavit. Pages turned around and saw the truck “quickly pull away from my location and pass two vehicles crossing the double yellow lanes into oncoming traffic.” With Pages in pursuit, Nelson turned around through a driveway on Bridge Access Road and started heading south on Kalifornsky Beach Road.

Nelson had two passengers in his truck at the time. One of them later stated that Nelson used her cell phone during the chase to make a 911 call, giving a false report of shots fired at the Kenai Walmart in order to divert troopers from the chase.

A second trooper joined the pursuit. Pages wrote that he “observed numerous vehicles take evasive actions by pulling off to the side of the roadway in order to avoid collision with Nelson’s vehicle.” After an approximately 20-mile chase, Nelson’s truck went into a ditch, and he was arrested.

Nelson was transported to Wildwood Pretrial Facility. As a result of the chase he was charged with reckless driving, driving with license revoked, failure to stop, two charges of assault in the third degree for placing his passengers in fear during the chase, violating conditions of release for his prior DUI, and terroristic threatening in the second degree — a charge of falsely reporting threats.

In addition to the Friday threatening incident and the Saturday chase, Nelson is facing a third case with charges of assault in the third degree as a result of a June incident in which he allegedly threatened his brother with an axe.

Reach Ben Boettger at ben.boettger@peninsulaclarion.com.

More in News

Alaska Department of Fish and Game logo. (Graphic by Jake Dye/Peninsula Clarion)
Board of Fisheries approves Kenai River king salmon action plan

The plan adds bait restrictions for in-river fisheries, doubles the sport bag limit for sockeye salmon, and adds a swath of restrictions to the commercial setnet fishery

The Kenai Municipal Airport is seen on Friday, Oct. 6, 2023. (Jake Dye/Peninsula Clarion)
New Grant Aviation planes to double service’s flight capacity

The first of two Cessna 208B EX Grand Caravans will start transporting passengers on Monday

Stickers are available for voters at the Kenai No. 1 precinct for Election Day on Tuesday, Oct. 5, 2021. (Camille Botello/Peninsula Clarion)
Soldotna to hold ‘I Voted’ sticker design contest

City council members approved the program during their Wednesday night meeting

Rep. Justin Ruffridge, R-Soldotna, speaks in support of a bill increasing state funds for public education in the Alaska House of Representatives on Thursday, Feb. 22, 2024 in Juneau, Alaska. (Ashlyn O’Hara/Peninsula Clarion)
Bill seeking to bump use of Alaska Performance Scholarship clears the House with unanimous support

The money is awarded to high-performing high school graduates to help pay for postsecondary education at participating institutions in Alaska

Alaska Department of Transportation and Public Facilities Commissioner Ryan Anderson answers questions from state senators during a Senate Finance Committee hearing on Wednesday, Feb. 28, 2024 in Juneau, Alaska. (Mark Sabbatini/Juneau Empire)
State officials working to meet Friday deadline for revised transportation plan

The federal government rejected the plan on Feb. 9, citing numerous deficiencies

Travis Every, top left, speaks in support of fishing opportunity for the east side setnet fishery before the State Board of Fisheries at the Egan Convention Center in Anchorage, Alaska, on Tuesday, Feb. 27, 2024. (Jake Dye/Peninsula Clarion)
Local fishers talk conservation, opportunity before Board of Fisheries in Anchorage

Local fishers from the Kenai Peninsula traveled to Anchorage this weekend to… Continue reading

Sen. Jesse Bjorkman, R-Nikiski, presents information on a bill establishing a voluntary buyback program for Cook Inlet’s east side setnet fishery on Monday, Feb. 19, 2024, in Juneau, Alaska. (Ashlyn O’Hara/Peninsula Clarion)
Bjorkman bill would pay bonuses to nationally certified teachers

The Alaska Department of Education and Early Development estimates that the bonus program would apply to about 215 of Alaska’s estimated 7,315 teachers — about 3%

Alaska senators meet with members of the media to discuss education legislation after a press conference by Gov. Mike Dunleavy on the topic on Tuesday, Feb. 27, 2024, in Juneau, Alaska. (Mark Sabbatini/Juneau Empire)
Dunleavy threatens veto of education bill if more of his priorities aren’t added

It is not certain there would be the 40 votes necessary to override a veto by the governor

A map displays a wide-ranging special weather statement, published Tuesday by the National Weather Service, covering Southcentral Alaska. (Map courtesy of National Weather Service)
Strong winds, low wind chills forecast through Friday

Wind chills over night may reach as low as -20 to -40 degrees in much of Southcentral

Most Read