Falmouth couple indicted for allegedly hosting underage drinking party

Posted Sept. 12, 2012, at 7:23 p.m.

FALMOUTH, Maine — A Fieldstone Lane couple faces an Oct. 4 arraignment in the Cumberland County Unified Criminal Docket in Portland after they were indicted Monday on charges of allowing teenagers to drink alcohol during a June party at their home.

Barry Spencer, 53, and his wife, Paula Spencer, 52, were each named in nine Class D counts of allowing a minor to possess or consume liquor in indictments handed up by a Cumberland County grand jury.

Class D misdemeanors are punishable by up to a year in jail and a $2,000 fine.

Lawyers Walter McKee and William Childs, who represent Barry Spencer and Paula Spencer, respectively, have indicated in court records they will enter pleas of not guilty for their clients. Both attorneys advised the court and Cumberland County District Attorney Stephanie Anderson of their intentions before arraignments scheduled for last month.

The Spencers and their lawyers this week did not respond to questions about the case, which stems from a June 16 party at the Spencers’ home.

The party was billed as a chem-free celebration of championships won by the Falmouth High School boys lacrosse and baseball teams, but the indictments list nine teens between the ages of 15 and 18 who allegedly consumed or possessed alcohol at the party. Six of the nine teens were under the age of 18.

In June, Falmouth Police Lt. John Kilbride said officers first responded to an anonymous tip about the party around 10:30 p.m. on June 16. Kilbride said Barry Spencer assured Sgt. George Savidge at the time the party was a chem-free celebration.

After Savidge left, Officer Luke Hallett stopped a car nearby and discovered teens who had been drinking. The teens allegedly told Hallett they had been at the Spencer home, so Savidge, Hallett and Officer Dennis Ryder returned to the home to investigate.

At the time, and again this week, Kilbride was graphic in describing a party with as many as 100 teenagers present, in various stages of sobriety.

Some screamed obscenities at police or fled into the woods behind the home.

“Officers had to deal with a pretty difficult scene and they were concerned about the drug use, the alcohol use and the vast amount of vomit they were seeing,” Kilbride said in June.

At least three juveniles were charged at the scene with alcohol-related offenses, and Kilbride said this week that it was challenging to build the case against the Spencers for hosting the party.

“Party scenes are very difficult to manage to extract all the evidence you’d like to get,” Kilbride said. “You make sure the ones who need treatment get treated and the ones that are trying to get behind the wheel don’t, and then you work backward.”

The cases against the Spencers will be heard together, with a dispositional conference scheduled for Nov. 28. Lawyers will present motions Dec. 18, and a trial is expected to begin sometime around Jan. 28, 2013.

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