Maine father who had used shock collar on kids pleads to explosives charge

Posted March 17, 2017, at 5:12 p.m.

BELFAST, Maine — A Waldo County father previously jailed for using a dog’s shock collar to punish two of his children was sentenced to three days in jail earlier this month after he was accused of setting off explosives near a third child.

James Kuhn, 31, of Troy pleaded guilty on March 10 to Class E disorderly conduct for “making loud and unreasonable noises” and spent 72 hours in jail, according to court documents.

In exchange for pleading guilty to that charge, earlier charges of criminal use of explosives, reckless conduct and endangering the welfare of a child were dismissed.

In late November, Kuhn was arrested following an investigation by the State Fire Marshal’s Office that was launched after a Department of Health and Human Services employee reported receiving a tip that Kuhn built improvised explosive devices and blew them up near his 7-year old son over the summer.

In March 2014, another one of Kuhn’s sons, who is now 10 years old, came to Morse Elementary School in tears one morning, triggering his teachers to ask questions that ultimately led to police intervention and caused the school to be placed temporarily on lockdown so that the father could not take the boy home.

The boy told officers that his father had kicked him and punished him by whipping him with towels, dragging him by the hair and by using a dog’s shock collar. Kuhn also was accused of shocking his daughter with the collar.

Two years ago, Kuhn was sentenced to 364 days in jail, with all but 10 days suspended, after he pleaded guilty to two counts of aggravated domestic violence assault. In addition, he faced probation after his release.

Kuhn also was convicted of domestic violence in 2009, according to previous reports.

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.

Follow Nick McCrea on Twitter at @nmccrea213.

 

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