17 Maine teens charged with underage drinking after prom

Posted May 25, 2011, at 6:56 a.m.
Last modified May 25, 2011, at 3:18 p.m.

BRUNSWICK — Seventeen teenagers from 12 communities were summoned for illegal drinking early Sunday morning after Brunswick police broke up what they described as an after-prom party held by North Yarmouth Academy students at a home on Woodside Road.A 17-year-old female was hospitalized in connection with the incident, police said.The homeowner, 46-year-old Janet Rousseau of Brunswick, also was summoned for providing a place for minors to consume alcohol. Police say Rousseau was home at the time of the party.Just after 1 a.m. Sunday, officers went to Stoneridge Drive, off Pleasant Hill Road, for reports of “yelling and howling in the woods,” Brunswick police Cmdr. Marc Hagan said Tuesday.When they arrived, officers reported that they followed yelling through the woods to a driveway, and then to the Woodside Road home.Along the driveway they saw several parked vehicles. They then observed what appeared to be a large number of young adults who appeared to be younger than 21 yelling inside a garage, Hagan said. Beer cans and plastic cups allegedly littered the lawn and garage floor.After one male emerged and ran back into the house, “numerous people fled out of the house and garage and into the woods,” he said.Police made contact with Rousseau, who was at home, according to Hagan. Officers also rounded up 17 of the teens, who ranged from 16 to 18 years old. They told police they were holding a party after the NYA prom, Hagan said.Inside the house, officers found a 17-year-old girl from Chebeague Island unresponsive and lying on a couch with a trash bag near her head, Hagan said. A Brunswick rescue crew drove her to Mid Coast Hospital.The juveniles — who listed residences in Bath, Brunswick, Freeport, Topsham, Harpswell, North Yarmouth, Auburn, South Portland, Falmouth, Windham, Chebeague Island and Phoenix, Ariz. — were released to parents at the scene.NYA statementReached Tuesday morning for comment, NYA Headmaster Peter Mertz said, “Prom night is the longest night of any principal’s or headmaster’s year, and usually it works out fine.”Mertz released the following statement: “North Yarmouth Academy regrets that a number of our current students evidently made poor choices that involved the use of alcohol at a non-school sponsored after-prom party last Saturday night. Their actions reflect negatively on our much larger student body and the school as a whole. The students involved have been forthcoming about the incident and appropriate disciplinary steps are being taken, including suspension from athletic activities. This will have an impact on several teams as we end our seasons, regrettably affecting students who held themselves to the higher standards that are expected of all NYA students.”Mertz said the academic status, and graduation, of seniors involved in the incident “will be discussed and weighed.”Rousseau and the teens are scheduled to appear in West Bath District Court on July 13.

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