CARIBOU, Maine — An Orient man who was charged in connection with a triple homicide in Amity in June 2010 and then arrested again last month on a drug offense has been indicted by the Aroostook County grand jury.
Robert Strout, 64, was indicted on charges of aggravated furnishing of scheduled drugs and violation of bail, according to Aroostook County District Attorney Todd Collins. The indictments, which were handed down on Friday, were announced Tuesday.
Strout was one of three people charged by the Maine Drug Enforcement Agency after agents conducted a lengthy surveillance operation in northern Maine. Also charged were Craig Strout-Desmond, 24, who is Strout’s grandson, and Brianna Bonness, 24. Strout-Desmond and Bonness, who are from Ellsworth, both were charged with trafficking in oxycodone and Bonness also was charged with possession of drugs and violation of conditions of release. Bonness had been on bail for a charge of attempted burglary.
MDEA Division Commander Darrell Crandall said that on Aug. 3, a state trooper relayed a tip to MDEA agents that Strout-Desmond and Bonness soon would be leaving the Ellsworth area with the intent to pick up prescription drugs to later sell.
Agents found the pair and followed their vehicle from Ellsworth into Bangor and north on Interstate 95. The couple reportedly left the interstate in Lincoln and traveled back roads through Penobscot and Washington counties before stopping at Robert Strout’s home in Orient.
The vehicle then was followed back to Ellsworth, where it was stopped and searched.
The agents seized 170 tablets of the prescription painkiller oxycodone from a plastic bag in the center console of the vehicle, according to Crandall. The drugs were valued at about $3,400.
Strout-Desmond was arrested and Bonness received a summons.
Since they were charged in Ellsworth, they were not indicted by the Aroostook County grand jury.
Agents then went to Strout’s home on Aug. 4 and he was arrested a short time later. The agents developed evidence that Strout had furnished more than 150 tablets of oxycodone to Strout-Desmond on at least five separate occasions, according to the MDEA.
In an unrelated case, Strout was arrested last September and charged with hindering apprehension and arson for his alleged role in helping conceal evidence in a triple homicide investigation in the Aroostook County town of Amity. Strout reportedly helped the accused killer in the case, Thayne Ormsby, 21, of Ellsworth, conceal evidence and burn the vehicle of one of the victims.
Police say that Strout admitted helping to conceal evidence in the killings. He has pleaded not guilty to those charges.
Strout’s bail on the recent drug charge was set at $50,000 surety or $10,000 cash. He had not made bail a week after his arrest in August, but information on his current status could not be obtained Tuesday evening.
If convicted, Strout faces up to 10 years in prison.