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Press Release

Drunk Snow Machine Driver Patrick Tickett Gets Lengthy Sentence in Snow Machine Death of Anchorage Doctor

May 20, 2011

Kotzebue, Alaska - In February, a Kotzebue jury convicted Ambler resident Patrick Tickett, 22, of manslaughter, first degree assault and drunk driving after slamming his snow machine into Dr. Roger Gollub and Tracey Shaeffer while Gollub and Shaeffer were dog sledding on the ice outside Kotzebue in November 2008. Schaeffer had taken the popular doctor mushing when the crash occurred on a trail outside the Northwest Alaska town. Tickett, after consuming dope and alcohol, was traveling an estimated 60 mph. Superior Court Judge Ben Esch sentenced Tickett to serve fifteen years in jail and gave him four more years of suspended time. Tickett will be on probation for another eight years when he is released from jail. In imposing the lengthy sentence, Judge Esch emphasized community condemnation, reaffirmation of societal norms and deterrence of Tickett and others in the community.

In a separate case, Judge Michael Jeffery sentenced Tickett to fifteen years with ten years suspended and ten years' probation for a 2008 act of sexual abuse of an Ambler minor. Tickett's sentence for the sex abuse offense runs consecutively to the sentence handed down by Judge Esch in the manslaughter, assault, and DUI case.

For questions, please contact Assistant Attorney General and case prosecutor Gregg Olson of the Department of Law Rural Prosecution Unit, (907) 269-6037.

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