August 18, 2019
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‘No one else could have her’: Court documents reveal grisly details of South Paris murder

Mark Penley, right, of Peru is accused of killing two people on New Year's Day.

SOUTH PARIS, Maine — Held without bond, accused of killing his ex-girlfriend and her boyfriend, a Peru man, charged in a double murder, made his first court appearance Friday.

The 49-year-old suspect is ordered to have no contact with the victim’s family.

Mark Penley is named in an affidavit as the alleged killer of Heather Bickford and Dana Hill. The affidavit also documents how Bickford was in fear for her life up to the very day she was killed.

Penley showed no sign of emotion in court Friday, but police say on Jan. 1 he entered Heather Bickford’s apartment and shot her and Dana Hill multiple times.

[Peru man arrested in connection with New Year’s Day murders]

Police say after the shooting, Penley called 911.

Bickford’s childhood friend, who is holding a vigil Saturday, is still reeling from the news.

“Heather, I can say, who is just what you would call a happy-go-lucky person,” friend Coleen Elias said. “Had this laugh that I wish I had on the recording because I believe everyone should hear it. She could make anyone laugh.”

According to court paperwork released Friday, police arrived to find Penley holding Bickford’s infant child and her 8-year-old on the couch after he called 911.

[Two people found dead in South Paris apartment]

Police say they found a baseball bat covered in blood at scene, but the autopsy confirms the fatal wounds were gunshots.

Also in the documents, Bickford’s landlord told investigators she was trying to get before a judge on New Year’s Eve because she claimed Penley was following her.

The rest of this affidavit and other court documents detail witness accounts of Penley’s pent up jealousy, and his preparations to kill Bickford so that, “no one else could have her.”

A vigil will be held at 6 p.m. Saturday in Moore Park in South Paris.

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