Bands play, crowds gather to help wounded policeman

An empty beer pitcher labeled "donations" sat on the wooden bar and rock music shook the walls tonight at Chilkoot Charlie's in Midtown as a group of local bands launched a five-hour benefit concert for the Anchorage police officer shot Jan. 9.

The event, scheduled to end at 10 p.m., is one of several efforts to help Officer Jason Allen's family pay expenses or reward tipsters who lead police to his shooter.

Allen was shot five times while sitting in uniform in his squad car at about 2 a.m. in residential Fairview neighborhood. Police believe Allen was targeted because he's a police officer. As of Sunday, they have not announced any arrests in the case.

"I've always felt safe here and to hear something like that happen, it kind of hits home a little bit," said Chris Cardenas, co-owner of Alcatraz Records, and an organizer for Sunday's event. Roughly 40 people -- some perched on beer-keg stools -- watched the band Art of Treason early in the concert. Along with collecting donations, the benefit sought to raise money for Allen's family by auctioning donated items such as day-spa gift certificates and a night at the Hilton.

The Anchorage Police Department Employees Association is offering a $10,000 reward for information leading to the arrest and successful prosecution of Allen's attackers. The Anchorage Education Association, a teachers union, announced Thursday it would contribute $1,000 to the reward and family funds.

The public can contribute to the Jason Allen Reward Fund or the Jason Allen Family Support Fund at any Key Bank branch, according to APDEA.

Twitter updates: Call Kyle Hopkins at 257-4334.