June 25, 2018
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14 charged after sheriff’s office busts underage drinking party in gravel pit

By Mario Moretto, BDN Staff

GREAT POND, Maine — About 150 people were partying in rural northern Hancock County when their boozy shindig was busted by the Hancock County Sheriff’s Office, according to a report released Monday by the office.

Around 1 a.m. Saturday, Sept. 1, deputies responded to reports of a large party in a gravel pit on Hinckley Brook Road, near Black Cap Mountain.

Partygoers had crafted two bonfires in different areas of the gravel pit, according to Lt. Patrick Kane of the sheriff’s office. A large sound system in a pickup truck provided tunes for the bash.

“It was quite a gathering, they far outnumbered us,” Kane said Monday. He added that the crowd, mostly underage, was respectful and quickly obeyed the order to disperse.

Attendees told deputies they had learned about the party on Facebook, Kane said. A Hermon teen had created an event and invited his friends. Word spread from there.

Kane said the area of Stud Mill Road in northern Hancock and southwestern Penobscot counties is a popular spot for these off-the-grid pit parties. He said it’s always dangerous to hold large gatherings in rural Maine — not only would it take a long time for an ambulance to arrive if someone were hurt, but the intoxicating effects of alcohol and drugs could lead to disorientation and partygoers could get lost.

“This is the wild woods,” he said. “It’s not Ellsworth up there.”

In all, 14 minors were issued summonses for possession of alcohol by consumption.

They were: Lucas Baillargeon, 18, of Old Town; Daniel Clark, 19, of Bangor; Colby Cronin, 19, of Sanford; Matthew Darrah, 19, of Bangor; Mason Gurney, 19, of Bradley; Alex Leithiser, 18, of Old Town; Justin Loring, 19, of Old Town; Zachary Madden, 19, of Old Town; Kristen Morse, 19, of Hermon; Tyler Mullins, 19, of Bangor; Corey Stephens, 19, of Orono; Tyler Valdez, 20, of Old Town; James Verlee, 20, of Bangor; and Justin Whittington, 20, of Bangor.

Kane said the only reason more arrests weren’t made was because many sheriff’s deputies were on duty elsewhere during the busy Labor Day weekend.

Follow Mario Moretto on Twitter at @riocarmine.

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