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Patti Godfrey recovering from gunshot wounds

Posted: Monday, August 05, 2002

ANCHORAGE (AP) -- Patti Godfrey, wife of retired Alaska Commissioner of Public Safety Glenn Godfrey, was recovering Sunday after undergoing 12 hours of surgery for gunshot wounds.

On Saturday, her 53-year-old husband was shot and killed inside their Eagle River home by a woman who also shot Patti Godfrey before turning the gun on herself and committing suicide.

Patti Godfrey, 52, remained in critical but stable condition Sunday at Alaska Regional Hospital. She underwent surgery Saturday to repair wounds to her arms, leg and stomach.

She was conscious Sunday and responded by nodding her head to questions posed by members of her family, said Greg Wilkinson, spokesman for the Alaska State Troopers.

''The family is encouraged by Patti's progress, and appreciates the continued support and prayers of the community,'' the Godfrey family said in a statement issued by Wilkinson.

Funeral plans had not been finalized but were expected to be over the next several days. A memorial fund also was going to be established, Wilkinson said.

Anchorage police said the killer was an Anchorage woman distraught over a failed relationship with Godfrey after he had reunited with his wife. The woman was identified as Karen Brand, 33, vice president of the Alaska State Chamber of Commerce and a former staff person with the state Legislature.

According to Anchorage police, the Godfreys apparently were shot about 12:30 a.m. Brand shot Glenn Godfrey first, once in the head and twice in the stomach. She then shot his wife as she fled up a flight of stairs. Police said Brand then shot herself in the head.

Police found a .44-caliber handgun in the house and they believe it was the gun Brand used.

Police are not certain where Brand obtained the weapon, but Anchorage police investigator John Daily said it is possible Godfrey may have been killed with his own gun.

''We believe she obtained it in the house,'' Daily said.

Patti Godfrey called 911 from a portable phone. Police arrived to find Glenn Godfrey and Brand dead in a room on the first floor. The gun believed to have been used in the shootings was found near Brand's body.

Godfrey was public safety commissioner from August 2000 to June of this year. Before that he was director of the Alaska State Troopers.

Godfrey joined the troopers in 1970 and was post commander in Bethel where he was instrumental in establishing the current Village Public Safety Officer program.

Godfrey retired after 32 years with the Department of Public Safety to accept a position with Koniag Inc., the Native regional corporation for the Kodiak area. Godfrey had been a board member since 1989 and board chairman since 1996.

An Aleut who grew up in Kodiak, Godfrey was named ''Citizen of the Year'' by the Alaska Federation of Natives in 2000.



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