May 26, 2019
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Comments for: Ex-Maine police officers claim law enforcement failed in its duty to confiscate Lake’s guns

  • Anonymous

    lake had it in his mind to complete the mission he was on..if they had confiscated all his guns,he would have bought one just for that day

    • Anonymous

      Not sure who this Gagan guy is – never heard of him. He used to work for two departments in Maine? The fact that there’s no info about how long he worked there, what his background is, etc, is concerning. What makes him an expert? Now, he’s not even in Maine? Sorry, but without some information explaining why his opinion should be given ANY weight,  it’s a bit like a guy who worked at a Prompto and a Jiffy Lube for 6 months each, criticizing a 25 year mechanic. Who cares?

      • Anonymous

        Oh, wait. Here’s his bio. –
        “He has held executive and officer positions with The Maine Medical Center, Burger King Corporation, The Pepsi-Cola Company, and Blockbuster Entertainment Corporation.” 

        Of course, having worked on such deep social issues as the size of BK’s onion rings, he’s an expert on law enforcement. What does Ronald McDonald have to say on the matter?

        • Anonymous

          tblmeats–who are you to judge? What are your credentials?
          You state “Who cares”  –Let me go ahead and educate you…….Who Cares— ALL the women and children that live in or have lived in Domestic Violence situations.. For the number of women that are killed or kill due to a domestic violence situation…TO ALL THE FAMILILES…that have to hear about such torment that their children are going through… THAT my friend is who cares!

      • Anonymous

        It is time to stop defending this monster.  He was hell bent on killing his family, and was enabled by his parents.  The Judge, and the Police who didn’t keep him under lock and key in a jail cell.

    • Anonymous

      Doesn’t make it right…or acceptable.

      • Anonymous

         I didnt say it did

  • The entire case of this cowardly, pretending-to-be-a-man Lake, just makes me sick to my stomach.

  • Anonymous

    If people think that law enforcement is at fault here then how about the people that bailed this monster out two times?

  • Xerxies

    Brian Gagan is not a credible source or authority regarding domestic abuse, he never had been! It’s obvious he’s forgotten what he may have once known about law enforcement, and the challenges an average LEO faces in his/her daily duties. I for one intend to ignore anything he has to say after reading the garbage he espouses… He deserves no “credit” or credibility due to his past as a LEO, it’s obvious he didn’t learn anything.

  • It seems to me that Bail Commissioners get it all wrong too many times.
     And we all end up paying the price.
    Im glad change is in the works.

    Are the commissioners elected or appointed??

  • Anonymous

    So where did this gun come from? If he didn’t have it when she turned the rest over to family, he could have gotten it since, no law will stop a motivated person…

  • Anonymous

    The guy was a monster and Amy Lake was a wonderful person. The children were brought into this world and had very little hope or quality of life with him as their father. Typicaly that doesn’t end well.

    I think many of you ladies out there that are dealing with a maniac monster (and only you can really know if they are capable of murdering you and your family) should research taking a course and getting a concealed weapon permit. But as a reminder, you do not need a course, class or license to go to a gun store and buy a handgun anytime. That is your right. Then the day some monster convinces you he is there to kill you and your children by all means put a bullet right between the eyes. Then call the police and tell them why and what you have done. It might be hard to live with but you will be around to “live” with it and so might your kids.

    • Anonymous

      So defend violence with violence…..not a good idea.  Under todays law he would have been held on a minimum of 1 million dollars.  No one would have been able to bail him.

  • Lord Whiteman

     I hope all honest gun owners fully support the no guns for felon’s rule.

    • Anonymous

      What’s this got to do with the article?  If someone is convicted of a “white collar” non-violent  “felony”, they should lose their rights to firearms for life? What is the correlation between the crime with a lifetime prohibition on an unrelated matter??

    • Anonymous

      I got a question for you. What other constitutional right can be denied to someone in America and is not in prison or in the court system?

    • Guest

      What about gardeners?? should they be allowed guns??  Should union members should be allowed guns.
      the laws are messed up as they are. being accused of domestic abuse is grounds to take away someones guns, thats stupid.
      You people want to use the tragic deaths of these people to forward your agendas.

      • Lord Whiteman

         No I think all honest people should be allowed to own weapons.  Felons give up that right when they decided to commit a serious crime.

        • Anonymous

          If a felon wants a gun it can be obtained from another criminal.

        • Anonymous

           So, lets say that a person has three convictions for O U I in less than a ten year period…..that is a class c felony……so that means that “Fred” looses his right to own guns for life ?  YES HE DOES ! And that is BULL !

        • Anonymous

          Someone that lies under oath does not lose their freedom of speech. A drug dealer doesn’t lose the right against unreasonable search and seizures. I can go on.

          Also different states have different laws and different penalties. In one state an usable amount of marijuana is a civil ticket and in another state its a felony. In some states a 19 year old sleeping with a 17 year old is perfectly legal and in another state its a felony.

        • Guest

          define serious.
          if someone did something stupid at the age of 18 got 10 days and probation, should he/she be allowed to own a gun at lets say at the age of 30-40-50-60 or never.

      • Guns dont kill people do isnt that the slogan? 

    • Anonymous

      That’s already a law , I believe.  Lets support law enforcement to enforce the law !

  • Anonymous

    Mr. Gagan is full of theoretical ideas.    The reality is if anyone desires to kill, they will do so.  They can use a gun, a knife, a car, a baseball bat, a tire iron,  a punch…  even if one forfeits all their guns.  They can steal one, borrow one, acquire one.  You can not stop a sick individual focused on murder.
    Sounds like Mr. Gagan has an agenda.  For the record, I am a former state LEO.   Officers are not blessed with a crystal ball.  If these officers thought for a second they could intervene, or if this tragedy would occur, I’m sure they would have worked every free hour they had.  What is Mr. Gagon’s history anyway?

  • Anonymous

    You all make very good points, so i will try my best to make mine as well.  When he brandished a gun and threatened his wife and the man he assumed she was having an affair with, all guns in his name should have been removed and put in possession of the police..IMMEDIATELY.  If the courts did not issue the proper search and siezure warrants, than shame on them for not providing them and shame on any form of justice that did not follow through.  This is not the first nor likely the last that we hear that the Lake killings were unnecessary and a huge tragedy if all of the pieces had been put in place to keep this maniac off the streets and away from them.  Once threatening was done with a weapon, attempted murder could have been charged to keep him locked up and police protection should have been provided for the family.  This tragedy has taught Maine a lot, too bad it was at the expense of a wonderful woman and her two innocent children.

  • Guest

    The Police did nothing wrong here. Period.  Everybody always wants someone to blame for anything that goes wrong in their lives. It make them feel good..
    This was a bad thing that happened by some insane person, thats all story over..

    • Doesnt really sound that way to me I dont think that the police are to completely blame but I do think that they could of done more. Maybe paying a little more attention to this case and evaluated it just a bit more. I dont think that really there was much that ANYONE could do unless they locked him up and never let him out. Some are not threatened by a protection order, if they want to do it they will find a way. I feel bad for the rest of her family members who now have to live with this and may they all RIP.

      • Anonymous

        If the police are to blame for not doing enough then the victims are also to blame for not doing enough to protect themselves.

        • Anonymous

          What more could they have done……moved out of Maine?   It still would not stop him.  The only thing that would have stopped him was JAIL with no bail.

          • Anonymous

            If they feared for their lives they could have taken it upon themselves to use deadly force to protect themselves.

          • Anonymous

            Violence begets violence, but they should not have been put in that posistion by a bunch of gun nuts who are commenting on this story.  He should have been put away for a long time before he resorted to this.

          • Anonymous

            Fortunately people cannot be locked away without due process.

          • Anonymous

            Disqus generic email templateHe had been charged with domestic violence twice. The first time they should have thrown the key away.

          • Anonymous

            You need to be educated! Use deadly force to protect themselves—then where does that leave the victim and their children…well, lets see…sometimes…the victim is put behind bars unless they have an exceptional attorney to defend them. Then where does that leave the children….state custody or with family…now having to deal with a homicide…wow…
            Two Wrongs Don’t Make a Right! ~Never has…

          • Guest

            Two wrongs don’t make a Right,..In this case it would of, so thats a false statement.

            Killing someone to protect your on life would be OK…

          • Guest

            for what precrime??

          • Anonymous

            He had assaulted her and the kids twice before.

        • I have much more I could say but it appears that others have said enough thnx!

          • Anonymous

            If by enough do you mean the one person that falsely said that using deadly force to protect yourself from deadly force will get you in trouble?

            Law enforcement has no duty, as affirmed by the US Supreme Court, to protect individuals. Law enforcement exists to protect society as a whole. It is the individual’s responsibility to provide their own security for their own safety. If you have a lunatic bent on murdering you, you should probably learn how to utilize deadly force to protect yourself and/or your family. Anything less is irresponsible and will only cause you to be defenseless and at the mercy of a murderer, which this situation demonstrates all too well.

            Don’t expect others to keep you and your family safe. The only person who can do that is you.

  • Anonymous

    This story is woefully incomplete.

    The headline refers to “ex-Maine police officers,” yet the story relies on only one, Brian Gagan. A LinkedIn profile appearing to belong to Gagan (http://www.linkedin.com/in/brianfgagan) doesn’t even brush upon any law enforcement experience.

    When was he a police officer?

    We don’t know, because the story doesn’t say. Saying that he once worked for the Westbrook and Scarborough police departments isn’t good enough.

    Who are the other police officers who supposedly wrote this report?

    We don’t know, because the story doesn’t say.

  • Anonymous

    Even if they took his guns, all he had to do was pick up an Uncle Henry’s and he could have had his hands on another one in the blink of an eye. No back ground check,  no three day waiting period, and no questions asked. Just bring cash. Besides, there are hundreds of ways to kill people once a lunatic has lost their sense of reason. Shooting is just one option. They should have hauled him off to the loony bin after he held his family at gun point the first time. One strike and you are out.

  • Anonymous

    Why is so much emphasis being put on the weapon? Here is an idea. The next time someone drinks and drives and kills someone, let’s talk about the type of vehicle they were driving.  

  • Anonymous

    I give credit to Brian Gagan and the others for bringing this issue to light – and that it’s fact sometimes law enforcement fails to follow the letter of the law; and in this case need to step up to the plate because the result ended up in the murder of 3 people who deserved every/any opportunity available for protection under the law.

    If Gagan and the others are, indeed, former law enforcement employees then I am heartened by the fact that they’re speaking up. Being an LEO is, without doubt, one of the most difficult jobs, and we are thankful for those who endeavor to do their best with integrity to serve and protect us.

    However, contrary to Prosecutor Bill Stokes there are instances when law enforcement doesn’t do it’s job; and the results can be tragic. It seems an excuse for Stokes to make the comment that Lake was ultimately responsible, and at the same time not admit that Maine law required law enforcement to have taken possession of the Lake’s firearms (or another to have possession) with submittal of a list — within 24 hours.

    It is fact that Stokes and the Attorney General’s Office are aware of several incidents involving Brunswick Police officers (including Chief Richard Rizzo and Cumnerland County prosecutors not following the letter of the law). As a matter of fact many of the incidents were willful – some Brunswick Police officers (including Chief Richard Rizzo) filed falsified reports; did not enforce a Maine Superior Court Order and even disregarded the same Order when Officer Mark Waltz and Kevin Skofield (currently police chief in Bridgton) removed legally-placed no-trespassing signs then entered a residence without want, warrant — nothing– they entered the house beyond doors containing locks and deadbolts – to threaten the property owner to “come to an agreement” with the town at a mediation scheduled for 5 days later with the Town of Brunswick (evidence included another adult witness and videotape). Officers also disregarded bias/hate crimes; multiple criminal trespasses occurred even with the perpetrator yelling, “Go back to your own f….. country!” The culminating event was a perpetrator writing to town councilors to “ban” the property owner from their residence followed up about a week later by an attempt to run over the resident and a friend by motor vehicle. It is fact there was a grand jury indictment (the ADA’s assistant’s disdain for the grand jury seemed evident when she said, “They’d indict a ham sandwich.”) and a bench trial – ADA Michael Madigan did not inform the judge of the falsified police reports – nor did he tell the judge he participated in one of those falsified police reports with Officer Michael Moody.

    So, case in point, the aforementioned is an example of law enforcement and prosecutorial misconduct – and corruption.

    If the lead prosecutor for this State could at least admit that sometimes law enforcement fails to follow the letter of the law – then that gives room for change to fix the system.

    • Anonymous

       “Gagan argued that police failed to follow through on the protection from abuse order.
      “There was no best effort, there was no attempt to collect these firearms,” he said in a telephone interview Thursday.”

      Yeah like the Brunswick Police Department, the good ole boy network and shiftless, lackadaisical and negligent reasoning covered-up via the blue code of silence.

  • Anonymous

    Lake  should not have been allowed bail, period. The weapon thing, even if all his guns had been accounted for he still had two they coundn’t take and they were holding  up a sign in his mug shot.

    • Anonymous

      Sorry, one is presumed innocent until proven guilty in this country and entitled to bail — bail that is not unreasonable.   So your opinion that bail should have been denied is without merit and unlawful.

      • Anonymous

        He pulled a gun on his wife and threatened to kill her, look at his picture, that picture was taken when he got arrested for it. He told his son he could get a 29 cent divorce, he stalked and continued to threaten his family, his wife removed the guns, he lied to the cops about the guns and you think it’s unlawful to suggest no bail and my statement has no merit?
        I guess I’d be a jerk to say they could have had bail high enough so he couldn’t pay it.
         Hope you enjoy being right because they are all dead.

  • Conley Raye

    Police Chief in Milo ,now says he mis-spoke when he said no money was missing. Police Chiefs, do not speak until they know the facts. If they do, they need to change careers.  Time for a major change in small town law enforcement. 

  • Guest

    So, darn it…..most crime can be stopped by taking away any and all tools that can be used in committing the crime.  Simple, easy solution to bring peace to the world.  I can see the campaign signs now “Gagan brings world peace”.   Lake was an evil monster, and it sounds like his close knit family stood beside him (someone bailed him out).  Evil doesn’t follow rules, I doubt that a law allowing removal of all of his guns would have made him human.  I am all for removing his guns and any measure to protect the family from him, but I am not naive enough to think he would then be a good dad and husband.  Everything about this article and this know-it-all is ridiculous and offers nothing to the family or community as we approach the one year anniversary for the family.   

  • Stephanie Stock

    Mr lake was going to do what he did no matter what and getting your hands on a gun is the easy part.  You can’t live on should of could of and would of. The one to blame is dead let this family rest in peace. May god have Amy and those two little ones with him now.

  • Anonymous

    There are valid and passionate viewpoints from all sides of this tragedy, but one thing that kind of jumped out at me in today’s article was the paragraph where Sheriff’s Lt. Robert Young said that when he talked to Steven Lake in jail, he asked Lake if he had anymore guns, and Lake said that Amy had turned ALL his guns over to family.  The article goes on to say that the Sheriff’s Office believed that was true. Seriously?  Like the guy would have admitted to still having a couple of guns in his possession?  Who did he think he was interviewing?  Mother Theresa?

    • Anonymous

      Lt. Young also said that belief that someone is lying is not sufficient evidence to obtain a search warrant. Things like  the constitution prevent wanton abuse of rights at the expense of “public safety” make safety a personal responsibility. 

  • Anonymous

    Why is this man dragging this out now? These people are all deceased and no matter of speculation will change that. Let them rest in peace. What the police did or did not do is irrellivent now.

    • Anonymous

       Justice has no time limit.
      We are all called to account for our actions, either in this life or the next.

  • Anonymous

    Please think about the issue Brian Gagan and others bring to light with the following comment quoted from Kenneth Capron:

    “We live in a culture which punishes ‘squealing’ with excommunication and abandonment. Somehow we have twisted the truthfully expression of concern about something that seems bad or wrong into something terrible – the wrong thing to do.

    But when analyzed up close, ‘squealing’ would address a lot of the problems that actually do undermine society. Squealing, if adopted as a valid social tool, could significantly reduce abuse, theft, lying, cheating, fraud, scams, rape, bankruptcy, welfare fraud, white-collar crime, shoplifting … the list is endless.

    So whose idea was it to penalize squealing rather than accepting it as a social tool to prevent the sins of many?

    Only someone who doesn’t want to get caught would promote secrecy over squealing. So, it must have been a politician who thought squealing was a social evil.”

  • Anonymous

    Unfortunately, what happened last year can’t be reversed. Let’s hope future situations will be avoided by careful monitoring of weapons available to abusers. Perhaps without his usual stash of guns, a hot headed abuser will cool off long enough not to bother seeking another source of deadly weapons.

  • Has anything been written on where he obtained the gun he used to kill his family?   Did he own it prior to his PFA orders?   Did he obtain just to commit the murders?   Did the Sheriff’s office fail to completely fulfill the law’s mandates?

  • Anonymous

    All Police Offiecers in that area are responsible for this tradgedy.  Along with the judge, bail commissioner, and those who enabled him.  His Parents should be charged also.

  • Anonymous

    This was a tragic ending to a horrific story. Brian Gagan, is doing what MORE people should do…Domestic Violence in the State of Maine is becoming an epidemic, more of a norm, if you will, and becuase of this local law enforcement have a tough job. Period. Do I believe they could improve -Yes- however, that ALL comes with education and experience. The more we can do to assist rather then blame would benefit all.. Gagan, is pulling a part a situation and looking to improve…which is NECESSARY…
    Change is needed…we can make up all the excuses in the world however, that will not take away this major issue.
    We can get on the defensive but is that helping our situation? Is that making the change that needs to be made?
    Recongize it, those of you in a position to make a difference, make the change!

  • Anonymous

    Soooooooooooo…….you can put restrictions on someone to insure they do not drink or use drugs (bail conditions anyone?) and can test them for such substances to insure compliance…..but the police cannot search a person’s home, vehicle, etc….to insure they are in compliance with the court ordered Protection From Abuse order for no weapons – because we all know people NEVER lie about still having weapons- just ask Steven Lake……makes perfect sense -just ask Amy, Monica and Coty Lake.

  • Anonymous

    I have known Gagan, Allanach and Loughlin for over 20 years each and would trust my life and the lives of my two children to them at any time.  All of you who do not think we have a big problem with that Sherriff’s department and I guess now the governor and attorney general as well, need to read the report beginning on page 29:
    http://pinetreewatchdog.org/files/2011/12/Dexter-DVH-Psychological-Autopsy-Final-Report-112811-111.pdf

    There is nobody better than these 3 people to get at facts and to tell the truth.  If they say there is a problem, there is one.

    Pine Tree Watch Dog highlighted the very issue that this Bangor article mentions, way back in January.

    The fact that the attorney general, governor and assistant attorney general have chosen not to make necessary corrections to this incapable and nincompetent sherriff’s department should scare everyone in that county.

    Let’s remember that Schneider is going to run for senate, and Stokes will run for Schneider’s job.  That explains why neither has the willingness to take on this issue.  They are ducking for cover at the expense of domestic violence victims throughout this state

    My vote is for the 4 guys who did this autopsy and I know 3 of them well enough to know that they will succeed against the incompetent’s who made this gun collection mistake and all those who are now defending them by doing nothing to make sure the same mistake does not keep happening.

  • Anonymous

    This is Brian Gagan, one of the people mentioned in yesterday’s BDN article.  Although all four of us who did the four months of research and reporting on this psychological autopsy were or are police officers up to as high as Deputy Chief and Chief in Portland and Westbrook, our case research has never been focused upon law enforcement but instead has been focused solely upon the behaviors of all involved parties up to the morning of June 13, 2011.  We did behavioral research as opposed to criminal research so that what are referred to as antecedents to the criminal outcome may be known and prevented from the date of our report (November 28, 2011) forward. 

    There is something very unjust, and indicative of a seismic error that must never be repeated when four people die at the end of a weapon that was mandated to be inventoried and/or collected and secured under Court order by Judge Stipham…who has been one of our 84 information sources during our continuing research and corrective actions resulting from this horrible outcome.

    Every person here can know these things which will be proven and will end up corrected and prevented from ever occurring again whether the Governor and Attorney General want that to occur or not:

    1.)  Judge Stipham’s order was valid and was required under the Court and state statute to be executed and enforced.  NOT executing a Court order or refusing to comply with such and order IS Contempt of Court.
    2.)  That execution and enforcement did not occur according to the Maine State Police report (page 55) on this crime, and according to Judge Stipham directly to us on the afternoon of February 16, 2012.
    3.)  Contrary to what Mr. Stokes has erroneously stated to us, it is NOT the responsibility of the defendant to self-enforce the Court order against himself.  It is the responsibility, solely, of law enforcement.  It is not expected, for example that drunk drivers need to stop at the nearest police station to turn themselves in while police officers play poker at that same station.
    4.)  The ONLY responsible law enforcement agency responsible for executing and enforcing the firearms relinquishment order in this case was the Piscataquis County Sherriff’s office.  That agency did not do one thing…not one…to enforce Judge Stpham’s order.
    5.)  The order itself stipulated (also per MRSA 19-A-101-4006) that law enforcement must either receive the written inventory of all weapons owned, possessed and accessible, or receive the weapons themselves.  No weapons were ever sought or received in this case…not even one on or after the July 21, 2010 Court order.  And, no inventory was ever collected by the Sherriff’s office, per information provided directly to us by the Court on September 26, 2011 which was then affirmed by the Maine State Police within their case continuation report on page 55.  September 29, 2011 at 8:48 AM was when Lt. Young told us he was “uncomfortable with what we were doing” and refused to meet with as at our 9 AM scheduled appointment that day…the second time we were going to meet with him.  That was three days after we discovered the firearms relinquishment order error by the Sherriff’s Department.  The Court, coincidentally, is next door to the jail and Sheriff’s Department.
    6.)  During our first meeting with Lt. Young on September 12, 2011 he told us, “there was nothing we could do to stop this” and we believed him.  Most of the reason for that was that he was a law enforcement officer and even more important…I went to high school with him.  Then we learned factually that the firearms relinquishment was never executed but was instead just handed to Steven Lake on a logging road (in his Jeep) in Mayfield Township (also mentioned in the State Police continuation report on page 181) on July 21, 2010.
    7.)  In December, 2011 we were asked directly by an Assistant Attorney General, “where did Lake get those guns?”, and we told that person.
    8.)  The inarguable proof (through four deceased people) that a massive error was made is that NONE of Steven Lake’s over 20 firearms, including the two that he possessed during his murders and suicide, were ever sought, inventoried, collected or secured.

    And so that everyone may know, each and every one of the four of us owns and uses firearms.  In fact, two of us teach people how to shoot.

    This is not a political, NRA, gun rights, or Constitutional law issue.  Instead, it is a procedural and malfeasance issue that must now be corrected very pointedly by the Governor and Attorney General without regard to whatever their political aspirations are. 

    We are shocked that these very fine people have decided to do nothing to correct the error that led directly, based upon specific State Police evidence and investigation, to the deaths of these four people.  We will be both doing that and accomplishing that, we may assure everyone.

    To not do so would be an act of inhumanity toward Amy, Coty, Monica and yes, Steven Lake.

    There is a 100% chance that all of these four people would have a much larger likelihood of being alive now if the Piscataquis County Sherriff’s crew had done some or all of their job per state statute and Court order.

    And there is also a 100% chance that these four humans are now dead as the direct result (affirmed by the Maine State Police) of Steven Lake’s actions while possessing and using weapons included within the “all firearms” language in Judge Stipham’s July 21, 2010 firearms relinquishment order.

    So the question for all of us and for the Governor and Attorney General is this:  What part of those two facts do you not, or perhaps refuse to, understand?

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