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Nome resident arrested in sexual assault case

Close-up of a white Nome Police Department vehicle.
A Nome Police Department vehicle. Photo: KNOM file, Matthew F. Smith.

Nome Police arrested Isaac Ozenna Sr. on May 4 on multiple charges of sexual assault of a minor and coercion.

A grand jury levied 31 indictments against Ozenna for alleged crimes stretching back nearly 50 years. Community member reports prompted the investigation, according to a press release from the Nome Police Department. Nome police worked not only with the district attorney’s office during the investigation, but also with the Ketchikan and Wasilla Police Departments. Ashly Crockett, assistant district attorney for Nome, did not know if Ozenna will be charged in other jurisdictions.

A grand jury indictment does not mean that a defendant has been found guilty, only that they have been formally charged with committing a felony. It is impossible to say at this point whether the case will go to trial.

“After the case has been indicted by a grand jury, then we make sure that the defense has full discovery in the case — that they have all the evidence. Then there will be some pretrial negotiations where we’ll see if there is a possible resolution of the case short of trial,” Crockett said.

If the case does end up going to trial, it wouldn’t happen until July at the earliest, but the defense would largely determine the timing.

“The state would be ready for trial in July. But at this point, it’s up to the defense to make sure that they have time to review all the discovery and decide their next steps,” Crockett said.

Ozenna was arraigned on May 5, and his bail set at $250,000. He is being held at the Anvil Mountain Correctional Center outside of Nome. The investigation remains open, and Nome police encourage anyone with information related to the case to contact Investigator William Crockett at 907-304-1178 or 907-443-8507.

Image at top: A Nome Police Department vehicle. Photo: KNOM file, Matthew F. Smith.

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