HOULTON, Maine — Adults and a number of minors are accused of alcohol offenses after a party busted by the Houlton Police Department on Sunday morning.
Police Chief Butch Asselin released the information Tuesday evening after charges had been lodged against the individuals.
Asselin said Tuesday that the incident began just after 5:30 a.m. Sunday when Officers Stephen Nason and Ezekiel Collins investigated a call from the area of Green and South streets.
Asselin said that a 20-year-old Washburn resident was found on South Street carrying a case of beer. The man said that he had been to a party the previous evening and had been consuming alcohol. He agreed to come to the police station with the officers where he was administered a preliminary test for alcohol consumption. Asselin said the man’s blood alcohol content was 0.219 percent.
He told the officers that he had left his cellphone at the residence where he had been partying, which he identified as 55 Columbia St.
As officers investigated and approached the Columbia Street residence, Nason reportedly saw several underage people go into a garage and close the door behind them. From outside, the officers also saw empty alcohol containers in front of the residence, on the kitchen table and on a table in the garage.
Officers were greeted by Craig Goodall, 18, who lives at 55 Columbia St. Goodall informed the officers that he had not been consuming alcohol, he wasn’t having a party and that there wasn’t anyone else inside the residence, according to police.
Goodall’s parents were out of town for the weekend. Nason contacted Goodall’s mother, who police said indicated that there wasn’t supposed to be anyone at the residence other than her son.
Once inside, the chief said, officers found 10 underage males whose ages ranged from 17 to 20. Nine of the minors admitted to consuming alcohol. The 10th individual didn’t admit to consuming alcohol but submitted to a preliminary breath test. His blood alcohol content was 0.083 percent, according to Asselin.
Summoned for illegal possession of alcohol by a minor were: Tyler Swimm, 19, of Montville; Cody Little, 20, of Houlton; Christopher Anderson, 19, of Monticello; Jordan Brown, 18, of Houlton; Nicholas McIntosh, 20, of Washburn; and Jared Tapley, 20, of Hodgdon.
All have a court date of July 3 at Houlton District Court.
Three 17-year-olds were brought to the Houlton Police Department. They each were summoned for illegal possession of liquor by a minor and released to their parents. Their case will be forwarded to juvenile authorities for disposition.
Goodall was charged with providing a place for minors to possess or consume liquor, a misdemeanor. He also will appear in court on July 3. He told police that he had 40 or 50 people at his party that weekend. The alcohol allegedly was purchased by a truck driver at a local convenience store.
Another individual, 23-year-old Joseph McBride of Montville, was charged with trafficking in dangerous knives. He allegedly was in possession of a spring-loaded knife.
Asselin said that he was proud of police and community response.
“I credit the individual who reported it and my officers for their work, because I know it is going on,” he said.
And while he stressed that Goodall’s parents did not give permission for a party to take place at their home and did not know that a party was happening, he said that some parents believe it is OK to host graduation parties as long as the car keys of those attending are seized.
“I hope this sends a clear message that we will not tolerate it and there will be consequences,” he said.
The Police Department provides a free service called Police and Community Together to homeowners to check a property in the event they are gone overnight, a weekend or longer and leaving an unsupervised teenager home alone. For information, log on to the department’s website at http://www.houltonpolice.com/.
This story was updated to allow Police Chief Butch Asselin to clarify that Goodall’s parents did not give permission for a party to take place at their home and did not know that a party was happening.