Man charged with Alaska murder indicted in conspiracy

Posted: Friday, January 10, 2003

FAIRBANKS (AP) -- The Tacoma, Wash., man charged last week with the Dec. 27 murder of a woman in an Ester apartment and the attempted murder of another person in Fairbanks has now been accused of conspiring to murder three other people in Fairbanks.

Jason T. Wallace, 22, was indicted Wednesday on seven felony charges, including three counts of conspiracy that allege he and at least one other person made plans to murder three Fairbanks residents.

The grand jury also indicted him on the previously filed murder and arson charges in the killing of 25-year-old Teacka Bacote, crimes to which Alaska State Troopers say Wallace has admitted.

The conspiracy charges allege that Wallace participating in plans to kill Michael Keys, Jacqueline Godfrey and Godfrey's young daughter. None of the three were killed.

Wallace's conspiracy charges represent the latest twist in a case involving three deaths and ties to three states.

Keys, Godfrey and the girl all have direct connections to the principle people involved in the murder of Bacote and the Christmas Eve killings in Northern California of Hakeem Bryant, 25, of Fairbanks and Christopher Martin, 27, of Olympia, Wash., troopers said.

William Z. Holmes, 22, of Fairbanks has been charged with fatally shooting Martin and Bryant during a trip from Tacoma to California and later burning the rental car they drove.

Holmes, who is being held in Washington on an arson charge, pleaded innocent Thursday in Lewis County Superior Court, prosecutor Don Blair said. Capt. William Cox of the Shasta County Sheriff's Department has said Holmes will likely be transported to California to face murder and robbery charges once significant progress is made in the Washington arson case.

Troopers were saying little about the conspiracy charges against Wallace and would not comment about other possible suspects in the case.

In addition to the three conspiracy counts, the indictment charges Wallace with first-degree murder for allegedly killing Bacote with a hammer in an Ester apartment on Dec. 27, first-degree arson for allegedly setting fire to the residence in an attempt to destroy evidence, third-degree assault for allegedly placing a resident of the apartment complex in fear of serious injury, and tampering with physical evidence.

In a separate Fairbanks case, Wallace is charged with first-degree attempted murder and first-degree assault in the stabbing of 28-year-old Corey Spears, an attack that reportedly occurred the same morning Bacote was murdered. He pleaded not guilty to those charges during an arraignment Monday.

Spears rented the Ester apartment where Bacote was killed.

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