Judge orders Bangor man involved in standoff held without bail

Posted Nov. 10, 2010, at 11:17 a.m.

BANGOR, Maine — A federal judge on Wednesday ordered that the man who allegedly caused a police standoff last month be held without bail pending the resolution of his case.

U.S. Magistrate Judge Margaret Kravchuk also found there was probable cause to charge Domingos Nobrega, also known as Shawn Alan Nobrega, 33, of Bangor with being a felon in possession of a firearm and ammunition.

The defendant, dressed in an orange jail-issued jumpsuit, appeared agitated and upset during the 30-minute hearing Wednesday in U.S. District Court.

More than once, federal public defender Virginia Villa had to remind her client not to speak to the judge or witnesses. Nobrega also rested his head on his arms on the defense table and sobbed during much of the proceeding.

Nobrega was arrested last week while he was being released from the Dorothea Dix Psychiatric Hospital in Bangor, according to federal officials. He had been at the hospital since shortly after he was taken into custody about 12:30 a.m. Sunday, Oct. 24, by the Bangor Police Department’s Special Response Team.

Kravchuk said Wednesday she could not release Nobrega because there was nowhere for him to live. The woman with whom he lived in Bangor when he was arrested has taken out a protection from abuse order against him, according to testimony Wednesday. That prevents Nobrega from returning to the apartment.

Federal prosecutors had asked that Nobrega be held without bail until his case is resolved. The motion for detention filed last week stated that the defendant should not be released on bail because he has two prior felony convictions and is a threat to the community.

He is expected to be indicted later this month by the federal grand jury.

Nobrega was convicted in August 2001 of assault with a deadly weapon in North Carolina, according to court documents. He was sentenced to 16 to 20 months in prison and 30 months of probation.

In March 2004, Nobrega was convicted of felony assault and battery in Virginia, according to court documents. He was sentenced to five years in prison with all but four years and six months suspended.

Defense attorney Villa on Wednesday stipulated to the court that her client is a felon.

Court documents do not state how much time Nobrega actually served. He unsuccessfully appealed his conviction in Virginia, according to previous reports.

The current charge stems from a six-hour standoff on lower Main Street that began on Saturday, Oct. 23. The incident ended about 12:30 a.m. the next day when members of the Bangor Police Department’s Special Response Team shot tear gas into his home at 751 Main St.

As a precaution, area residents and at least one nearby business were evacuated, and Main Street between Thatcher Street and Cold Brook Road in Hampden were blocked off to traffic. A crisis negotiator made contact with Nobrega, Bangor police Sgt. Paul Edwards said previously, but negotiations did not result in the suspect surrendering.

Nobrega was charged last month in state court with being a felon in possession of a firearm. If convicted of a nearly identical charge in federal court, he faces up to 10 years in prison and a fine of up to $250,000. The maximum penalty for the crime under Maine law is five years and a fine of $5,000.

The state charge most likely would be dropped if Nobrega is convicted in federal court of being a felon in possession of a firearm and ammunition.

Nobrega still could be charged in state court with creating a standoff. If convicted of that crime, he could be ordered to reimburse the city for the cost of the standoff.

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