BANGOR, Maine — A Dover-Foxcroft man who shot his brother to death last year pleaded guilty to manslaughter Thursday morning in Penobscot County Superior Court.
Steven Mayo, 23, was sentenced to 18 years in prison with all but nine years suspended, according to Assistant Attorney General Andrew Benson. Mayo will also have four years of probation.
Mayo was indicted in May 2011 for murder and depraved indifference murder, both Class A crimes, in the death of his brother, Ryan Mayo, 20. Steven Mayo pleaded not guilty to the charges last July.
“This is a tragic situation for everyone involved,” said Benson. “We appreciate Mr. Mayo standing up and taking responsibility for causing his brother’s death and not putting his family through a trial.”
According to a state police affidavit, on May 1, 2011, Steven Mayo told investigators that he returned to his French Road home from grocery shopping and found his driveway torn up from an all-terrain vehicle.
He said he walked to his brother’s home next door and began removing fuses from the vehicle, which was parked on the lawn. He told police that his brother had damaged his property before despite being told not to do so.
In addition, Mayo told police that Ryan Mayo came out of his house and began chasing him, at one point using a white metal pole to hit Steven Mayo’s truck. Ryan also allegedly hit his brother in the mouth before yelling that he was going to get a gun and “blow Steven’s brains out,” according to the affidavit.
Steven Mayo told police that he went and got his 70-year-old Russian rifle from his house and shot out the tires to his brother’s ATV. Steven Mayo told police he was carrying the rifle on one shoulder and a bag of dog food on the other when Ryan came out of his residence with a shotgun and fired it.
Steven dropped the bag of dog food and shot at his brother as Ryan was re-entering his residence. According to evidence collected later at the scene, the bullet penetrated Ryan’s front door before hitting him behind the right ear. Ryan Mayo’s body was found at the base of his front steps with his left foot on the bottom step and right foot touching the lower base of the steps.
Former BDN writer Diana Bowley and BDN writer Christopher Cousins contributed to this report.