Fall Guy or Villain?

From his room at the Captain Cook Hotel in Anchorage, Joe Hazelwood has an unimpeded view of ice-choked Cook Inlet and the snowy peaks of the Alaska Range looming 100 miles to the north. But across the street in Courtroom C of Alaska Superior Court, where the defrocked skipper of the Exxon Valdez is trying to sort out his legal future, the outlook is murky.

For the past three weeks Hazelwood has been on trial for his role in the grounding of the tanker last March. If convicted of criminal mischief and recklessly creating a risk of property damage, he faces...

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