March 23, 2018
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Shirley man arrested in child-sex sting

By Diana Bowley, BDN Staff

DOVER-FOXCROFT, Maine — A Greenville businessman, who allegedly assumed he was meeting a 15-year-old girl in Dover-Foxcroft for sex Tuesday, found Dover-Foxcroft police waiting for him instead.

Donald Denbow, 67, of Shirley, who operates a barbershop in Greenville and who had operated a similar business in Dover-Foxcroft until late August, was charged with gross sexual assault. He is expected to make his initial court appearance on Dec. 28, in 13th District Court in Dover-Foxcroft.

Dover-Foxcroft police began an investigation Aug. 27 when the 15-year-old girl and another girl of the same age, now of Pittsfield, disclosed alleged past sexual abuse by Denbow after they were hired to clean his Dover-Foxcroft barbershop after hours.

The girl Denbow was to meet Tuesday told police that Denbow had allegedly had made sexual advances toward her between March and May 2008, according to a report filed by Detective Lt. Scott Arno. The girl said she was 14 years old when she went to work for Denbow.

Two weeks after the Dover-Foxcroft girl began working for Denbow, she said Denbow started making advances such as massaging her legs, according to Arno. She alleged he took photographs of her, put his hand inside her underwear and offered her $200 if she removed all of her clothing and let him do whatever he wanted to her, according to Arno’s affidavit. The girl said she refused.

The Pittsfield girl told police she started working for Denbow when she was 10 years old and was in the fourth grade and she had continued the job until February 2006. She alleged that Denbow forced her to perform oral sex on him, according to the police report. On later occasions, she said he would give her a type of potent wine and have sexual intercourse with her, police said. The girl reported that Denbow had sex with her “hundreds of times” in the barbershop and would pay her money for it, according to the affidavit.

Denbow reportedly told the Pittsfield girl that if she told anyone about the sex, she would go to jail with him, according to Arno, who interviewed both girls. The girl said Denbow had written her letters over the years telling her he loved her. He also allegedly had visited her in Pittsfield and gave her a memory box containing photographs he had taken of her inside his barbershop, her hair clippings and socks. During a later trip, she alleged Denbow had given her $100. The letters and the memory box were turned over to police, according to Arno.

The Dover-Foxcroft girl advised police on Sept. 21 that Denbow had attempted to contact her through cell phone text messaging and had asked her to meet him somewhere.

That prompted police on Tuesday to set up the sting operation and to execute a search warrant at Denbow’s Greenville business and home Tuesday. Several items were taken during the search, including sexually explicit photographs of young children, including the two girls, according to Arno.


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