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Charles Meach III

Charles L. Meach III was born in 1948 to a Traverse City, Michigan, dentist and his schizophrenic wife, who spent most of her adult life in a mental hospital.  He left Michigan for California at age sixteen, then returned to his father and stepmother's middle-class Midwestern home three years later.  Young Meach did not conform well to society's rules.  Through the years he developed a record of drug dealing, petty larceny, trespassing, and drunken driving. 

In 1967 he visited Germany and was arrested there for theft.  In the early 1970s he assaulted several people in Michigan, including a former girlfriend, but no charges were filed.  At one point his father felt Meach was so much out of control that he needed treatment.  The father arranged to have Charles committed to a Michigan mental hospital for three days.  After his release, he wandered through several western states, finally making his way to Alaska.


Classification: Homicide

Characteristics: Bludgeoned man because "had an irritating voice"; Shot four teen campers who caught him stealing from their tent

Number of victims: 5

Date of murders: 1973 / 1982

Date of arrest: May 6, 1982

Date of birth: 1948

Victims profile: A mentally retarded Alaskan Indian; Joseph Kimler, 19; Vern Sylvester, 19; Sabrina Imlach, 16; Rebecca Phillips, 16

Method of murder: Beating / Shooting

Location: Anchorage, Alaska

Status: Acquitted on grounds of insanity, 1973. Sentenced to 396 years without parole in four counts, 1983. Died in prison



April 21, 1983

Anchorage Daily News

page B5


Mass murderer Charles Meach will be transferred to the federal prison system soon, a corrections division official says.  Ken Brown said he received telephone notification Tuesday that Meach will be sent to the Springfield, Mo., medical facility for evaluation.  From there he will be sent to an unnamed federal prison, Brown said.  It's unclear how long Meach will remain in Springfield or how much longer he will remain the Anchorage jail, Brown said.  He won't be transferred until written orders are received from federal officials, he said.  Meach was sentenced to 396 years in prison for shooting to death four teen-agers in an Anchorage park last spring.  Earlier, Meach was found not guilty by reason of insanity for beating to death a grocery store clerk in another Anchorage park.



Friday, December 10, 2004

The Juneau Daily News



Anchorage (AP) - A man convicted of shooting four teenagers to death in Anchorage 22 years ago has died in his jail cell.  Corrections officials say 57-year-old Charles Meach apparently died of natural causes.  He was found dead at the Cook Inlet jail early yesterday (Thursday) morning.  Meach was serving a 396-year sentence for the 1982 shooting at Russian Jack Springs Park.  Portia Parker, deputy corrections commissioner, say Meach was normally housed at Spring Creek prison in Seward, but had been brought to Anchorage for some routing medical treatment.  Parker says Meach was alone in the cell when he died.  State medical examiner Franc Falico says he hopes to complete an autopsy today (Friday) to determine the cause of death.




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