Troopers nab suspect in Seward slaying

Posted: Wednesday, July 23, 2003

ANCHORAGE (AP) The hunt for the man suspected of killing his friend near Seward over the weekend came to an end Tuesday night with an arrest along the railroad tracks near Crown Point.

Alaska State Troopers said they found Bill Conger, 31, just before 9 p.m. walking along tracks near Mile 22.5 Seward Highway. Troopers had been searching for Conger around the clock for three days in the densely wooded area north of Seward.

Conger was taken into custody without incident, said Capt. Tom Bowman. He said Conger knew he was being pursued and had been on the move since the slaying.

''He looked really tired,'' he said.

Bowman said Conger had planned to walk the railroad tracks to Talkeetna, where he owns land.

He is suspected of shooting to death his friend and co-worker John Tulin, 43, with a large-caliber rifle Saturday night.

Bowman said troopers canvassed campgrounds in the Crown Point area during the manhunt and handed out color photos of Conger. On Tuesday, three or four people, some of them campers who had seen the photos, reported seeing a man matching Conger's description, said trooper investigator James Truesdell.

Troopers were able to get the Special Emergency Response Teams from Soldotna and Palmer into the Crown Point area for the arrest, Truesdell said.

Conger has been charged with first-degree murder, Bowman said.

Numerous law enforcement officials, including the two SERT teams, two helicopter crews and two K-9 crews, assisted in the hunt for Conger.

''They're just really tired and pretty much ecstatic that we were able to bring it to an end without any additional people getting hurt,'' Bowman said.

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