Rockland man charged in death

Posted Aug. 21, 2008, at 10:09 p.m.
Last modified Jan. 29, 2011, at 7:20 a.m.

ROCKLAND — State and local police Wednesday night arrested a local man and charged him in connection with the death of his 9-week-old daughter.

Charged with manslaughter is 24-year-old Robert Harford, who was arrested about 9 p.m. at the Rockland Police Department after being interviewed by detectives, according to a news release from Steve McCausland of the Maine Department of Public Safety.

Harford is charged in connection with the death of his infant daughter, Ava Harford, who was born June 16.

The girl was unresponsive when taken by ambulance from her home at 105 New County Road about 7 p.m. Sunday. She died at Maine Medical Center on Tuesday night after being flown by helicopter from Pen Bay Medical Center in Rockport on Sunday night.

An autopsy Wednesday by the State Medical Examiner’s Office showed she died of multiple blunt force head injuries. Harford lived at the home with his daughter and the girl’s mother, 25-year-old Kirby Gushee.

Harford was taken to the Knox County Jail. He is scheduled to make his first court appearance at 11 a.m. today in Knox County Superior Court.

The baby’s death marks the state’s 25th homicide this year, the most homicides the state has seen since 1999, when the year ended with 25 homicides, according to the Maine Department of Public Safety. Four of the victims this year have been children under the age of 2½.

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