BANGOR, Maine — There are 27 people charged with murder or manslaughter waiting for their trials in Maine — an above average number for the state — and only seven are currently scheduled for adjudication in 2013, according to the most recent homicide case list.
“We average at any one time 20 to 24 people” in the judicial system for homicide, Assistant Attorney General William Stokes, head of the criminal division in the Maine attorney general’s office, said Friday. “We resolved 20 in 2012 as of today.”
A Lewiston man also is sitting in jail waiting to be sentenced for killing a woman who went missing on July 1, 2011, and whose body was found earlier this month, and an Auburn man is awaiting a verdict for his murder trial that took place earlier this month.
Of those accused of taking another’s life in Maine, two are out on bail, one is being evaluated at a mental health facility, one is in the care of the Department of Health and Human Services, and the other 24 people are behind bars at county jails.
The crimes have grabbed headlines — some that date back 36 years — and four killings over the last two years in Maine remain unsolved.
A total of 20 homicides have occurred so far this year, including a drug-related shooting and arson in Bangor that left three people dead and burned inside a rental car. The state also is prosecuting an 11-year-old girl — the youngest manslaughter suspect on record — for her role in the death of an infant.
Vacationland saw 28 homicides in 2011. There were 24 homicides in 2010, which is the average annual number for the state, according to Maine Department of Public Safety spokesman Stephen McCausland.
Five people charged in 2011 and one charged in 2012 have court dates for 2013.
A high number of prisoners awaiting trial has put a strain on at least two county jails in Maine, Penobscot County Sheriff Glenn Ross said Friday.
“Aroostook and Penobscot are both over capacity,” he said. “Over 70 percent of our population is pre-trial inmates. That’s up from about 50 percent.”
The county jail in Bangor has a capacity of 143 and on Friday had 176 people in custody “ with 20 boarded out,” Ross said. “We have boarders out all over the state.”
When the state switched from having daily initial court appearances to only having them three times a week, it really changed his jail’s population, the sheriff said.
“The county jail has been flat funded for a couple of years but we can’t put out a ‘No Vacancy’ sign on the door,” Ross said.
Penobscot County Jail is holding six charged with murder or manslaughter. Androscoggin County Jail, Aroostook County Jail, Hancock County Jail, Knox County Jail, Somerset County Jail and Waldo County Jail each have one prisoner charged with murder or manslaughter.
Cumberland County Jail has three, Kennebec County Jail has three, York County Jail has four and Two Bridges Regional Jail also has one murder suspect who is currently being evaluated at a mental health facility. The other person charged with murder is serving a sentence in Maine State Prison and will face the new charges against him in May.
The following is a list of those charged, organized chronologically by the date of the crime:
• Gary Sanford Raub, 63, who was going by the name Gary Robert Wilson in 1976, was arrested in October in Seattle and charged with murdering Blanche M. Kimball, whose body was found stabbed repeatedly in her Augusta home on or around June 12, 1976. Police matched his DNA to the homicide scene because he took part in an undercover “chewing gum survey” that police staged in July. He is being held at Kennebec County Jail.
• George Jaime, 75, of Presque Isle, was arrested for murder on July 13, 2012 for the 1998 death of his former girlfriend, Starlett Vining, 38, who has been missing for 13 years. Her body has not been found.
• John Thibeault, 32, of Orono, was a Maine State Prison inmate when he was indicted in July 2011 for manslaughter for the death of fellow prisoner Sheldon Weinstein on April 20, 2009. Thibeault, who has pleaded not guilty, was released from the prison in September 2011 after serving a sentence for robbery and is free on $100,000 surety bail. He has a March court date in Knox County Superior Court.
• Robert Lee Nelson, 41, is accused of shooting to death Everett L. Cameron, 60, as he sat in his pickup truck in North Anson on Oct. 31, 2009. Nelson waived his right to a jury trial and pleaded his case in front of Justice John Nivison, who heard closing arguments on Dec. 4. Nivison could render his verdict at any time.
• David Silva, 33, of Massachusetts, allegedly shot Readfield resident Robert Orr, 53, on Feb. 9 2011, and then set Orr’s house on fire to cover up the shooting. Silva, who was charged with murder, robbery and arson, also was charged in July 2012 with assaulting a corrections officer, aggravated criminal mischief and terrorizing. He is at Kennebec County Jail and has a court appearance scheduled for Feb. 5.
• Tareek Hendricks, 31, formerly of Worcester, Mass., reportedly stabbed Robert Stubbs, 40, at Stubbs’ Westbrook apartment on April 21, 2011. He was on the lam for more than a year but was picked up in Syracuse in July. He is being held at Cumberland County Jail.
• Franklin Higgins, 49, a convicted murderer behind bars at the Maine State Prison is accused of fatally beating another convicted killer, Lloyd Millett, in May 2011. He is scheduled to be in Knox County Superior Court in May.
• William Hall, 30, of Bangor told police that he strangled Melvin Abreu, 28, on June 9, 2011 and then threw him out of his second-story window. Hall entered a not guilty plea in November 2011 and is being held at Penobscot County Jail.
• Roxanne M. Jeskey, 48, of Bangor is accused of beating and strangling her husband, Richard Jeskey, 53, in their Ohio Street apartment, police say, during a fit of jealousy. His body was found naked and bloody on June 13, 2011, in the bathroom. She is scheduled to be in Penobscot County Superior Court on June 13.
• Buddy Robinson, 31, of Lewiston was convicted in November of killing Lewiston resident Christiana Fesmire, 22, who disappeared on July 1, 2011. Her body was recovered earlier this month in the woods in Lisbon and the medical examiner said she died of “homicidal violence with facial fractures.” Robinson, who is at the Cumberland County Jail, is waiting to be sentenced.
• Bob Ryder, 21, of Auburn told police he paid Danita Brown, 38, of New Gloucester, twice for sex and twice she had vanished with the money. The third time, on June 16, 2011, they had sex, and afterward he fractured her skull with a clock. He entered a guilty plea in Androscoggin County Superior Court in June and is in the county jail awaiting sentencing. He faces up to 30 years in prison.
• Joel Hayden, 30, of Massachusetts, is accused of shooting his ex-girlfriend and the mother of his four children, Renee Sandora, 27 of New Gloucester, and his longtime friend, Trevor Mills, 28, of New Bedford on July 25, 2011. He is scheduled to be in Cumberland County Superior Court in Portland on Jan. 7.
• Peter Robinson, 49, of Bradford, who police say had a history of disputes with Hudson contractor David P. Trask, 71, is accused of striking Trask on the head and fracturing his skull on Nov. 12, 2011. He pleaded not guilty to murder in December 2011 and was released on $30,000 bail.
• Lisa Anne McDonald, 48, is charged with stabbing her boyfriend once in the chest, causing his death in November 2011 at his Portland apartment. Portland police charged her with manslaughter in February. She is scheduled to be in Cumberland County Superior Court on Feb. 22.
• Daniel Porter, 24, of Jackson is accused of killing Florida firefighter, Jerry Perdomo, 31, on Feb. 16, 2012, in a drug-related shooting. His lawyer filed a motion earlier this month seeking to suppress evidence obtained during questioning. Porter is schedule to be in Waldo County Superior Court in April to face the charges against him.
• Gail Judd, 53, of Bangor has been charged with stabbing her boyfriend, Michael Drouin, 47, in the chest on Feb. 22, 2012 in her Court Street apartment. She told neighbors she stabbed Drouin in self-defense after he raped her, according to the affidavit filed after her arrest. She is being held at Penobscot County Jail.
• Michael Carter, 30, of Lamoine is charged with fatally shooting Lawrence “Randy” Sinclair Jr., 32, and wounding two others on March 11, 2012 outside his home on Route 184. He entered not-guilty pleas to charges of murder, elevated aggravated assault, aggravated assault and possession of a firearm by a prohibited person in June in Hancock County Superior Court. He is in Penobscot County Jail.
• Michael Swenson, 44, of Scarborough is accused of fatally stabbing longtime friend Roger White, 49, on April 27, 2012 outside the Whaler bar in Old Orchard Beach and hiding his body under some mattresses outside a nearby apartment house. He is being held in York County Jail.
• Gordon Collins-Faunce, age unknown, of Arundel, told police that on May 5, 2012 he hurt his 10-month old son, Ethan Henderson, because the baby was crying and he was frustrated, according to a Portland Press story. Collins-Faunce was arrested on May 6 while the child was in the hospital. The baby died May 8 after being taken off life support.
• Jason Alan Trickett, 41, a Bangor area transient, is accused of mortally stabbing Andy D. Smith, 38, near 69 First St. on May 22 during a group fight. He entered a not guilty plea in August and is being held at Penobscot County Jail.
• An 11-year-old girl from Fairfield, who the Bangor Daily News is not naming because she’s a juvenile, is charged with reckless or criminally negligent manslaughter in the death of 3-month-old Brooklyn Foss-Greenaway, who died on July 8, 2012. The death was ruled a homicide in August and the girl was charged shortly afterward. An evaluation for competency was ordered in October and the girl has been in the custody of DHHS since she was charged with manslaughter. The baby’s mother said her child was bruised and had medicine for attention deficit disorder in her system, the same medicine prescribed to the girl.
• Arline Seavey, 25, who is also known as Arline Lawless, 25, is accused of shooting her former boyfriend, Norman Benner, 32, to death in Waldoboro on July 23. She is assigned to Two Bridges, but is undergoing a mental evaluation at another facility, a jail official said.
• Nicholas J. Sexton, 31, of Warwick, R.I., and Randall “Ricky” Daluz, 34, of Brockton, Mass., both face murder and arson charges in connection with the Aug. 13, 2012 deaths of Daniel T. Borders, 26, of Hermon; Nicolle A. Lugdon, 24, of Eddington; and Lucas A. Tuscano, 28, of Bradford. The bodies of the three victims were found in a burned out rental car, rented by Sexton. Sexton is at Penobscot County Jail and Daluz is at Hancock County Jail.
• Andrew Kierstead, 40, of Tenants Harbor allegedly used a shotgun on Sept. 27, 2012 to slay Richard L. Mills, 48, a friend who he claimed had supplied him with drugs for years.
• Derek Poulin, 23, of Old Orchard Beach, was arrested in Oct. 23, after police say he fatally stabbed and beat his grandmother, Patricia Noel, 62, and then set her home on fire to cover up the crime. Poulin, who is charged with murder and arson, is being held at the York County Jail.
• Lebon Bruno, 39, a Saco area transient, was arrested in connection with the death of an ex-girlfriend, Elizabeth Williams, 55, who was found severely injured inside the motel room that Bruno had rented on Nov. 6. She died the next day at the hospital. He is being held at York County Jail.
• Matthew Partridge, 30, of Winslow is accused of shooting Justin V. Smith, 26, of China outside the You Know Who’s Pub in Waterville on Dec. 4. He is being held at Kennebec County Jail.