May 24, 2018
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Affidavit: Dog dispute leads to crime spree in Knox County

By Stephen Betts, BDN Staff

ROCKLAND, Maine — A dispute that began about dogs culminated in police tracking down and using a Taser on a 29-year-old Waldoboro man early Wednesday morning after officers said he went on a vandalism spree and threatened to burn down a house.

Jamie P. Luce was arrested and charged with aggravated criminal mischief, criminal mischief, criminal threatening, terrorizing, refusing to submit to arrest and violating conditions of release.

Judge Patricia Worth agreed to the prosecution’s request to hold Luce without bail, citing a concern for public safety.

According to an affidavit filed by the Knox County Sheriff’s Office, the confrontation started Tuesday evening in Washington when a Crystal Lake Road resident reported that Luce had thrown a rock through his window as a retaliation for the resident throwing a piece of wood at Luce’s pitbull after the canine attacked the resident’s dogs in his driveway.

When officers went to the scene, Luce and a female companion had already left the area, according to the affidavit.

At 9 p.m., officers received another call from the resident, saying that Luce had telephoned and threatened to burn down their house.

Later in the evening, the resident said Luce and the woman had returned and again threatened to burn down the house, according to the affidavit. The resident told police that Luce was carrying what looked like a gasoline container, according to the affidavit. She also said they were carrying sticks and tried to break her car windows.

By the time officers went to the home, Luce and his companion could not be found.

Shortly before 2 a.m., the Crystal Lake Road resident called again to say Luce and the woman returned and were smashing her car windows before running into the woods. Damage to the vehicle was estimated at more than $2,000.

Knox County officers, backed by the Waldoboro Police Department and a Lincoln County deputy with a tracking canine, arrived to search for the pair.

Luce was found at a home in Waldoboro where his female friend lives. He was on the floor of a bedroom but refused to comply with officers’ orders to stand up and be handcuffed. Officers shocked him with a Taser gun, according to the affidavit. Outside the home, they had to pepper spray him because he resisted arrest. Luce also reportedly threatened to kick out the windows of the police cruiser, so his legs were shackled.

The woman was not arrested, according to Sheriff Donna Dennison, because it appeared Luce was the main aggressor in the case.

At Wednesday’s hearing in Rockland District Court, Assistant District Attorney Christopher Fernald asked for Luce to be kept in jail since he was already free on bail after being arrested in April on two counts of disorderly conduct and one count of criminal mischief. The prosecutor cited Luce’s extensive criminal record, which Fernald said was almost too long to read. The convictions, dating to 2002, include aggravated assault, multiple assaults, criminal mischief, terrorizing and failures to appear in court.

Defense attorney William Pagnano argued for Luce to be released on $1,000 cash bail.

“These new allegations are just that, allegations,” Pagnano said.

Luce is a lifelong resident of the area, a fisherman and the father of a 3-year-old child. The defense attorney said Luce was not a flight risk.

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