Fairbanks teen pleads no contest in 1998 crime spree

Posted: Sunday, February 27, 2000

FAIRBANKS (AP) -- A Fairbanks teen has pleaded no contest to one count each of arson, burglary and attempted murder, stemming from a 2 1/2 week crime spree in October 1998.

In return, the state is dismissing about a dozen other charges against Roger Rose Jr., 16, including a second count of attempted murder.

Rose acknowledged that he deliberately set fire to a building with people inside, that he fired a handgun through a window at a woman sitting in her living room and that he broke into someone's home with the intent to steal, according to court records.

Fairbanks police connected Rose to the crimes after they were contacted by a taxi driver whom Rose didn't pay. The cabbie said he had taken the boy to fill laundry bottles with gasoline then dropped him off near the South Fairbanks apartment that was later set on fire.

Rose's plea change came one day after detailed testimony from the cab driver, but defense attorney Lori Bodwell said that the deal had been in the works for some time.

Victims of the crimes did not have any objections to the arrangement, As-sistant District Attorney Pat Doogan told the judge Friday, according to court records.

The prosecuting and defense attorneys have not made any agreements that might limit Rose's sentence. He faces up to 99 years for attempted murder, up to 20 for arson and up to 10 for burglary.

Sentencing has been set for June 20. Rose, charged in adult court due to the severity of the crimes, remains at Fairbanks Correctional Center on $1 million bail.

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