BANGOR, Maine — The woman’s body found at a makeshift shack near the Penobscot River on Sunday was that of a 19-year-old Old Town resident who was a victim of homicide, Bangor police confirmed Monday. Police identified the victim as Holly Boutilier.
“We’re not releasing the cause of death, but we are releasing the manner of death — it’s a homicide,” Lt. Tim Reid, who leads the Bangor Police Department’s detective division, said Monday afternoon.
No one had been arrested as of Monday night, and police are asking the public for help in finding the person or persons responsible for Boutilier’s death.
“Holly was last seen walking in the downtown in the Waterfront area on Saturday, Aug. 8, around noontime,” Reid said. “At that time, Holly was wearing a pink bikini top and gray sweat pants.”
Anyone who saw a young woman matching that description anytime after noon Saturday is asked to call the Bangor Police Department’s criminal investigation division at 947-7384 or they can leave a message on the department’s tip line, which may be reached at extension 95811.
Investigating officers deemed the death suspicious on Sunday, and police on Monday could be seen scouring the area around the shack, which is behind the Fireside Inn on Dutton Street and is known to be used by area homeless people as a place to congregate and drink. Police were still at the site at 7:30 p.m.
A man who police are not identifying found Boutilier’s body, Reid said.
“A man had someone else call for us,” just before noon Sunday, he said. “He has been interviewed.”
Reid would not speculate about suspects, saying “We don’t talk about suspects at all.”
Boutilier’s body was removed from the scene at about 6:30 p.m. Sunday by employees from an area funeral home. An autopsy was performed by the state medical examiner’s office Monday. Results were not released.
On Boutilier’s Facebook site, she had several photos posted, and stated, “I love to walk, dance, sing, swim, I love to do just about anything outdoors.”
One of her favorite quotations, according to her Internet page, is “Old enough to know better, young enough not to care.”
The 8-by-10-foot green shack where her body was found has only three sides and is sometimes visible from the Veterans’ Remembrance Bridge, Sgt. Tim Falvey, a Springfield Terminal Railway community policing officer, said Monday morning just after crossing the yellow police tape.
A brown tarp was added by the homeless to provide additional shelter from the elements, and the tarp makes the campsite nearly impossible to see because of the area’s trees, he said.
Falvey was called because the shack was believed to be on railway property, but it was learned Monday that “the city took ownership in 1996.”
By noon, police were searching the area by grid, he said.
“It’s detailed because there is so much junk down there,” Falvey said. “There is probably seven or eight good sized boxes [of evidence] that have to come out of there.”
It’s well-known that a homeless woman other than Boutilier has been staying at the shed, Dennis Marble, Bangor Area Homeless Shelter director, said on Monday.
“A woman has evidently, more or less, created a personal residence down there,” Marble said. The homeless woman has lived there “for quite some time,” according to Marble.
“It’s my understanding that she has taken steps to make it a home,” he added. “She planted flowers, put up a clothesline and had a stove for the winter.”
Marble believed the woman who stayed at the shack was currently not in the area. Police did not indicate that she had been located or interviewed.
Falvey said he was aware a homeless woman had stayed at the shack and noted she had added a circular rock wall and planted flowers.Even though the shack is on property owned by the city, Falvey said, “There is no question — that’s coming down. Right after this is over, it’s coming down.”