UPDATE: Keith Aumavae's family speaks out about his death
Tuesday, November 14th, Keith Aumavae's family spoke out about Aumavae's death and said they believe more could have been done.
According to Junior Aumavae, the silver alert for Keith was sent out five days after he went missing.
Tuesday, November 7th, Alaska State Troopers said during a news conference Aumavae never initially met the silver alert criteria.
"Here we have a guy that who is functioning he is living by himself he has a driver license we don't know if it meets the criteria. But the decision was untimely made here we will send it out." said Lt. Chris Thompson, Alaska State Troopers.
Junior Aumavae, Keith Aumavae's brother said he always met the silver alert criteria and if the alert was sent out sooner it could have had meant the difference between life and death for Keith.
"Keith was over eighteen-years-old. He was lost on foot or vehicle, he did suffer from mental illness," said Junior Aumavae. "The only part was that officials did not agree he was a harm if he was not found.
He said, he wants to see the missing persons process changed involving a silver alert with mentally ill individuals, so no other family has to go through the obstacles his family has faced.
Just before 6 p.m. on Nov. 13, officials with the Alaska State Troopers identified the cause of death of Keith Aumavae.
In a report made on the AST dispatch, troopers wrote, "The State Medical Examiner’s Office conducted an autopsy on Keith Aumavae. The SMEO determined the cause of death to be blunt force trauma consistent with impact from driving a car off of a cliff."
Troopers said that there were no "suspicious injuries or defensive type wounds" found on Aumavae’s body. They said that no foul play is suspected right now.
Investigators have ordered a toxicology test on the body, however they said results will not be available for a several weeks.
Troopers say Aumavae's family have been made aware of the investigation's findings thus far.
A Palmer man
has been found dead. In a post on social media, the family announced that 30-year-old Keith Aumavae and his car had been found.
“Please continue to pray for our family as we prepare to lay him to rest and for the troopers as they investigate what happened to our dear brother,” said Jenna Aumavae on social media.
Alaska State Troopers say they received a "report of a vehicle at the bottom of a cliff overlooking the inlet near Knik Goose Bay Airport" on Thursday, Nov. 9.
Troopers responded and located the vehicle at the bottom of the 100-foot-cliff. It was only accessible at low-tide and was partially covered with silt.
Friday afternoon, members of Alaska Mountain Rescue Group (AMRG) assisted AST in reaching the vehicle. AST says human remains were found that Troopers believe are those of Keith Aumavae.
Keith Aumavae went missing around Oct. 19. Family members say they called him and received no answer, they went to his apartment and found the door unlocked with his phone still on its charger. He was reported missing to authorities Oct. 27.
The Aumavae family had been critical of the search efforts conducted by Alaska State Troopers and the perceived lateness of issuing a Silver Alert, a criticism that AST challenged in
earlier this week.
The family had conducted numerous searches themselves around Anchorage and the Mat-Su Valley, hanging green ribbons to show that Aumavae was still missing. The family had also hoped to raise awareness about mental health issues. They had spoken openly about Keith Aumavae's history of mental illness.
Thursday, Nov. 09, the family held a
in the Palmer High School library.
The family was offering up to a
for information that led to Aumavae’s whereabouts.
Troopers say the remains have been sent to the State Medical Examiner for positive identification and to determine cause and manner of death.
The investigation is ongoing.