Two men have been accused driving a forklift through a wall of an Icicle Seafoods cannery in Larsen Bay and causing about $20,000 in damage.

Pete Muller Jr., 19, and Derick Hochmuth, 19, face charges of second-degree burglary and two counts of third-degree criminal mischief.

Alaska State Troopers said the break-in took place between 10 p.m. Sept. 13 and 8 a.m. Sept. 14.

The two men allegedly enlarged an existing hole in the side of the warehouse with an aluminum pipe so a person could crawl inside. The two men told a witness they couldn’t get out of the warehouse so they used the forklift to break through the wall to get out, court documents read.

Icicle Seafoods estimated the damages to be around $20,000.

Plant manager Stephen Lee said the list of damaged items included the warehouse wall, a pallet of empty tin cans that can no longer be used, two boxes of salt pellets, the forklift, and windows. The pallet of tin cans was valued at $5,000.

According to court documents, the forklift separated panels on the wall of the warehouse and damaged a power line that ran underneath the wall. Closets and lockers were pried open, the glove box on a 20-foot skiff was open, and the life jackets on the skiff were strewn around.

“We had to repair everything,” Lee said. “It’s just unfortunate all the way around. It’s a loss to us and out of the pocket to the company.”

Lee also said a couple of boxes of halibut were stolen from the room where fishermen stow personal fish and meat.

“Fish was stolen,” Lee said. “One of the workers who fished for us this summer broke into the fishermen’s locker where we have all the freezers.”

Muller has a history of criminal activity involving forklifts.

During an incident in Ouzinkie on April 23, Muller stole a forklift and a truck while under the influence. He caused over $1,000 in damage.

In August Muller pleaded guilty to one count of first-degree criminal trespassing and one count of second-degree vehicle theft for the Ouzinkie incident.

(0) comments

Welcome to the discussion.

Keep it Clean. Please avoid obscene, vulgar, lewd, racist or sexually-oriented language.
PLEASE TURN OFF YOUR CAPS LOCK.
Don't Threaten. Threats of harming another person will not be tolerated.
Be Truthful. Don't knowingly lie about anyone or anything.
Be Nice. No racism, sexism or any sort of -ism that is degrading to another person.
Be Proactive. Use the 'Report' link on each comment to let us know of abusive posts.
Share with Us. We'd love to hear eyewitness accounts, the history behind an article.