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Shishmaref Advocate Arrested in Anchorage for Alleged Sexual Assault

An Alaska State Trooper cruiser. Photo: Matthew F. Smith, KNOM file.

A young leader known for climate change advocacy from Shishmaref has been charged with multiple counts of assault and sexual assault in Anchorage, where the alleged crimes took place.

Towards the end of March, 22-year-old Esau Sinnok, a former Arctic Youth Ambassador known for advocating for his hometown which is hard-pressed by erosion and climate change, was taken into custody for sexual assault in the first degree – penetration without consent, sexual assault in the second degree – contact without consent, and assault in the fourth degree.

Sinnok is one of 16 young Alaskans currently suing the state for its policies on climate change. The Alaska Supreme Court Case Sinnok vs. Alaska is currently awaiting a decision from the justices.

Hunter and local leader Esau Sinnok of Shishmaref stands in his boat near his hometown. Photo from Dept. of Interior, shared publicly. (2015).

In his own criminal case, Sinnok’s first hearing is scheduled for April 23rd, at the Nesbett Courthouse in Anchorage.

Image at top: Alaska State Trooper cruiser. Photo: Matthew F. Smith, KNOM file.

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