A longtime Republican politician was killed in a head-on car crash near Palmer, Alaska, last week.
Former Alaska state Rep. Vic Kohring was driving a minivan on Glenn Highway around 5 p.m. on Sept. 6, the Anchorage Daily News reported.
He crossed the center line “for unknown reasons” and collided head-on with an oncoming semi-truck, according to a news release from the Alaska Department of Public Safety.
State troopers and medical personnel rushed to the crash site, but Kohring was declared dead at the scene. The truck driver was not injured.
One Twitter user from Alaska who said she met Kohring on multiple occasions expressed condolences for his family.
“My interactions with him were completely unrelated to politics,” the user wrote. “I can tell you he loved his Mom and kitties. May his loved ones find peace.”
My interactions with him were completely unrelated to politics. I can tell you he loved his Mom and kitties. May his loved ones find peace.
— Roamaround (@roamaround1970) September 7, 2022
Kohring served in the state Legislature from 1995 to 2007, the Daily News reported. He was known for his commitment to small government and low taxes, which earned him enough support from voters to win multiple terms in office.
He served as the chairman of a special oil and gas committee, and he slept in his office in Juneau to save money, Alaska Public Media reported.
Kohring resigned in 2007 amid accusations of corruption. The FBI raided his office in 2006, and a jury convicted him the following year of extortion, bribery and conspiracy, the Daily News reported.
He was initially sentenced to 3 1/2 years in federal prison, but he appealed the ruling. The U.S. Justice Department admitted to knowingly withholding information that would have helped Kohring’s defense, and he was given a new trial.
Kohring subsequently pleaded guilty to just one felony charge of accepting bribes, and his sentence was reduced to the one year he had already served in federal prison.
On a website he created, the former legislator detailed the alleged injustice done to him by the DOJ.
“I was the target of unscrupulous prosecutors from the so-called U.S. ‘Justice’ Department who were determined to convict a conservative lawmaker and long time chairman of the Alaska Legislature’s Oil & Gas Committee, regardless of the facts or evidence,” Kohring wrote.
“From the day my office was raided by a swarm of armed FBI agents on August 31, 2006, I was harassed, bullied, threatened and my constitutional rights repeatedly denied,” he said.
“The prosecutors cheated by intentionally concealing over 6500 pages of evidence as determined by a criminal investigation, much of which was crucial to my case and would have likely cleared my name at my 2007 trial.”
While this raid occurred about 16 years ago, the allegations Kohring made against the DOJ eerily resemble those of former President Donald Trump following the FBI’s raid of his Mar-a-Lago residence in Florida last month.
Trump has accused the FBI of unfairly targeting him for political reasons. In a statement on Aug. 22, he also took action against the DOJ by announcing his intention to seek the appointment of a special master “to oversee the handling of the materials taken in the raid.”
On Sept. 5, U.S. District Judge Aileen Cannon agreed with Trump and ruled a special master would be appointed.
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