Back to jail: Probation violation nets Albright murder defendant three months
One of three defendants in the 2010 Eagle River murder of Harvey “Charlie” Albright is back in jail after violating the terms of his probation.
An Anchorage Superior Court judge sentenced 25-year-old Kennith “Kenny” Upton to serve 90 days during a hearing Sept. 21.
Upton, one of three men implicated in Albright’s beating death, left jail on July 25 in a plea deal that got his second-degree murder charge reduced to criminally negligent homicide. He was sentenced to four years, two suspended. Among the terms of his five-year probation: no drinking to the point of excess.
Upton got the attention of Anchorage police at 3:15 a.m. on Aug. 15 in Eagle River after passers-by reported a fight. Upton was intoxicated - he blew a breath sample of .122, about 50 percent over the legal limit - and with a 16-year-old girl, police and probation officers said. Read more about the case here.
He was arrested Aug. 20 and has remained at Anchorage Jail since.
Time served counts toward the 90-day sentence, according to prosecutor Jason Gist. That puts Upton’s release date around mid-November.
The Anchorage district attorney’s office ordered a change to Upton’s probation conditions, Gist said. Instead of not drinking to excess, Upton now is not allowed to have any alcohol, period. He must also stay out of bars and liquor stores.
“Given the actions of the underlying (homicide) case and the fact that he was about 50 percent over the legal limit within 20 days of release, we went ahead and changed those probation conditions,” he said.
Upton and two other men - Carl Leedom and Philip Floor - wanted to scare the 23-year-old Albright as payback after the theft of a backpack belonging to Leedom that contained drugs and money, according to charging documents.
Albright spent the night of Aug. 23 at his old friend Upton’s house on North Juanita Loop Road. Floor delivered a half-dozen punches to him before he woke up, then the men bound Albright’s hands and feet with zip ties, according to court documents. At some point, Leedom pulled a pistol and crushed Albright’s skull.
Floor and Leedom drove to the Mat-Su with Albright’s body. They dumped it near the Matanuska River in the Butte. Upton stayed behind cleaning up the blood.
A grand jury indicted all three on various murder counts.
A jury convicted Floor of manslaughter during his April trial, but acquitted him on second-degree murder charges. He’s serving five years and scheduled for release in 2017.
Leedom is awaiting trial in January. As part of the plea deal he signed in July, Upton is expected to testify against Leedom.
If Upton should violate his probation again after he’s released, he could be ordered to serve the remainder of his suspended two-year sentence.