February 26, 2018
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‘I’m taking your family heads or tails’: Police release details in multi-state domestic violence case

Knox County Sheriff's Office | BDN
Knox County Sheriff's Office | BDN
William McBroom-Stees
By Stephen Betts, BDN Staff

A mother fled Tampico, Ill., with her 2-year-old daughter to escape an abusive relationship with an Iraq War veteran who reportedly had a serious addiction to methamphetamines.

The woman came to the Knox County area to stay with a relative but, according to police, William McBroom-Stees was able to track them down and threatened to kill her family.

McBroom-Stees, 42, was arrested Nov. 22 in Missouri and charged with felony domestic violence terrorizing and domestic violence stalking, based on the efforts of the Knox County Sheriff’s Office and the Rockland Police Department.

An affidavit filed by police in Rockland District Court details the alleged multiple and violent threats against the woman.

The woman, fearful for her safety and that of her family, went to New Hope for Women, which offers services to victims of domestic violence who live in midcoast Maine. New Hope contacted Detective Dwight Burtis, who oversees domestic violence investigations for the Knox County Sheriff’s Office, on Nov. 12. The victim told the Knox County detective that she fled because of the man’s abuse and said he was out of control on the drugs.

Burtis contacted the sheriff’s office that serves Tampico and was informed that there was a record of multiple calls to the woman’s residence for domestic violence-related incidents. However, there were no pending charges or investigations against McBroom-Stees out of Tampico, according to an affidavit filed in Rockland District Court.

On Nov. 13, the woman reported to the Knox County Sheriff’s Office that McBroom-Stees had telephoned her and said he knew where the woman’s mother and sister lived and threatened to come to Maine to kill them.

Later in the day, the woman returned to the sheriff’s office to report that McBroom-Stees had telephoned her again and threatened to kill her father in California.

McBroom-Stees called seven times while the victim was being interviewed at the sheriff’s office. The phone calls were recorded. According to the affidavit, McBroom-Stees would hang up unexpectedly during each of the calls, saying he knew that she was “with the cops” and that he suspected police were trying to track his calls.

The affidavit included statements made by McBroom-Stees during those phone calls. At one point, he told the victim to choose which of her family members he would kill.

“I’m taking your family heads or tails,” McBroom-Stees said, according to the affidavit.

He also said he did not care if he was killed but said he would not be going to prison but instead would end up in a “nut house.”

“If you are not here on the 23rd, I feel sorry for your family. I am going to start the worst bloodbath in America. Anybody with the [victim’s last name] is mine,” he stated, according to the affidavit.

McBroom-Stees also told the victim that he knew how to do this because he fought for his country in Iraq. The woman told police that he suffers from post-traumatic stress disorder.

McBroom-Stees said during one of the calls that he spotted a police cruiser behind him and made multiple threats to harm that officer while continuing his tirade against the victim, according to the affidavit.

The Knox County Sheriff’s Office contacted the Missouri State Police after the threats were made against the officer.

The victim’s mother, sister and father alos were alerted to the potential threats.

McBroom-Stees was found on Nov. 22 and arrested by police in Missouri.

Knox County Sheriff’s Office Chief Deputy Tim Carroll said that he is unsure when McBroom-Stees will be brought to Rockland for his initial court appearance on the charges. The U.S. Marshals Service will transport the suspect, as is standard procedure for most state-to-state relocation of detainees, he said. The district attorney’s office will handle those arrangements.

“The investigation concerned us mostly because we were unsure of the whereabouts of Mr. McBroom-Stees or when he was going to arrive,” Carroll said. “With the threats that were being made, we felt it necessary to pursue him across state lines and make the warrant for his arrest extraditable.”

He praised Burtis and Rockland Police Detective Sgt. Chris Young for their work on the case.

The chief deputy said the department takes all domestic related incidents, where there is always a potential for violence, very seriously.

If you or someone you know is experiencing domestic violence and would like to talk with an advocate, call 866-834-4357, TRS 800-787-3224. This free, confidential service is available 24/7 and is accessible from anywhere in Maine.

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