Sangerville teen admits to robbery, burglaries

Posted Nov. 06, 2012, at 5:01 p.m.

DOVER-FOXCROFT, Maine — A Sangerville teenager admitted to robbing another juvenile at gunpoint and seven other charges against him in Dover-Foxcroft District Court on Monday.

Joshua M. Hanson, 15, was charged with Class A robbery, Class B burglary, Class B theft by unauthorized taking, Class C criminal threatening, Class C theft by unauthorized taking, Class D burglary of a motor vehicle, Class E theft by unauthorized taking and Class E unlawful possession of a schedule Z drug.

He is scheduled to be sentenced on Nov. 19.

Piscataquis County District Attorney R. Christopher Almy said Hanson will be sentenced to the Mountain View Juvenile Development Center in Charleston until he’s 18, depending on behavior.

“It’s an indeterminate sentence,” said Almy in a telephone interview on Tuesday afternoon. “If he does well in the program, the Department of Corrections has the discretion to let him out when they feel it’s appropriate. If juveniles do well in their programs, they get out sooner, if not, they get out later.”

In juvenile cases, admission of the charges is equivalent to pleading guilty in an adult case.

The charges stem from a string of burglaries in Sangerville on Sept. 9 and 10, when a dozen vehicles and two homes were burglarized.

Thousands of dollars worth of property was stolen including cash, a video camera, video game consoles, a guitar, a knife, a computer and a .22-caliber semiautomatic handgun.

In a juvenile petition filed with the Piscataquis County district attorney’s office, Piscataquis County Sheriff’s Department Investigator Guy Dow said his investigation was focused on Hanson immediately as witnesses saw him with a guitar, backpack and bags, but it would be nearly a month before charges were filed.

On Oct. 6, a deputy from Penobscot County Sheriff’s Department contacted Dow to find out if items recovered from a Carmel residence were stolen in any burglaries in his area. As it turned out, they were. A compound bow, a video camera, Sony PlayStation 3 game console, HP computer and several other items were recovered and returned to victims of the Sangerville burglaries.

The person who was in possession of the stolen items said he had gotten them from Hanson.

On Oct. 9 at about 2 p.m., a boy was walking along a trail behind the Hardwood Products building in Guilford when Hanson allegedly came up behind him and held the stolen handgun to the back of the boy’s head, according to court documents. Hanson ordered him to empty his backpack and not move until he was out of sight. The boy complied.

A concerned parent notified Dow of the incident.

Dow went to the defendant’s home, but no one answered his knock at the door, even though he could hear someone inside.

Dow soon caught up with Hanson in Guilford near Clark’s Restaurant. The 15-year-old ran into the woods when Dow yelled for him to stop.

Hanson eventually stopped and Dow handcuffed him.

Hanson was in the possession of marijuana, a knife stolen from a vehicle and a .22-caliber handgun that had been stolen from a residence a month ago. The gun, which was believed to be the same one used to rob the boy earlier in the day, was loaded, but there was no round in the chamber, police reported.

“The [expletive] thing doesn’t work anyway,” Hanson said to Dow, according to court documents.

Hanson was transported to Mountain View Juvenile Development Center in Charleston, where he has remained since being arrested.

District Attorney Almy praised Dow and the Piscataquis County Sheriff’s Department for the investigation.

“I’m glad that the sheriff’s department, particularly Guy Dow, put the time that he did into the case,” said Almy. “He was able to solve several serious crimes, and hopefully the incarceration of this juvenile will make this community a little safer.”

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