Major Crimes

Washington County Death Ruled a Homicide

Pleasant Point Death

From the desk of Shannon Moss, DPS PIO

UPDATE: Washington County Death Ruled a Homicide

The Office of the Chief Medical Examiner has determined that the death of 43-year-old Kimberly Neptune is a homicide. Perry was found deceased in her home at 27 Thunder Road in Perry on Thursday, April 21, 2022.

Maine State Police Major Crimes Unit North is investigating Neptune’s death with the assistance of the Pleasant Point Police Department.

We are asking for the public’s help in identifying the person in the attached photos so that Detectives can speak to them to determine if they have any relevant information.  If anyone has any information about the person in the photos or about the death of Neptune, please call the Maine State Police at 973-3700 and leave a message for Detective Larry Anderson.
 

Pleasant Point Photo 2

 

Original Release

Maine State Police investigating death of a Washington County woman
 
On Thursday, April 21, 2022, at approximately 8:11 p.m., the Pleasant Point Police Department was requested by a relative to respond to an apartment at 27 Thunder Road in Perry to check on the well-being of 43-year-old Kimberly Neptune. Upon entry, Neptune was discovered deceased and the circumstances of her death are suspicious. Maine State Police Major Crimes Unit North was called and is now investigating the death with the assistance of Pleasant Point PD. An autopsy is being performed today at the Office of the Chief Medical Examiner. 
 
A neighbor of Neptune’s reported having a surveillance camera and located on the video a person walking by the apartment building. Screenshots of the video are attached. We are asking for the public’s help in identifying the person in the photos so that Detectives can speak to them to determine if they have any relevant information.  If you have any information about the person in the photos or about the death of Neptune, please call the Maine State Police at 973-3700 and leave a message for Detective Larry Anderson.
 

Local Podcast, Dark Downeast, Features cold cases in Maine

Are you curious about how cold cases are investigated in Maine?  Do you want to know how you can help? Please, take a listen to these two episodes of Dark Downeast as well as other episodes that highlight our cold cases!  

Recently, members of the Unsolved Homicide Unit, including a Prosecutor, Investigators, Forensic Chemist, and Victim Witness Advocate sat down with Kylie Low from the Dark Downeast Podcast (A Podcast that has highlighted several of our unsolved cases).  They spoke about their approach to Maine’s unsolved murders and missing persons believed to be murdered.  You can listen here.

Investigators also spoke with Kylie about how they were able to solve the 1985 murder of Dorothea Burke in Stockton Springs, highlighting how critical it is for people with information to come forward. You can listen here.
 
•    Recently resolved cases have had a common theme. People provided information  crucial to filing charges
•    We are interested in first-hand information (what you saw, what you heard)
•    Do not assume that investigators know to speak with you
•    Relationships change and now could be the time to reach out to us with what you know

The information you provide could:
•    Lead us in a new direction
•    Corroborate current information in a case file
•    Provide answers for family members and friends who are grieving 

Those who have information on our cold cases, please call (207)624-7143 or visit our website at 
https://www.maine.gov/dps/msp/investigation-traffic/unsolved-homicide-unit 
And leave a tip.  We need your help!
 

Washington County man arrested for murder in stabbing death of his father

From the desk of Shannon Moss, DPS PIO

On Thursday, March 10, 2022 at approximately 10:42 a.m., the Washington County Regional Communications Center (RCC) received a 911 call reporting a stabbing that occurred at 24 Sunshine Lane in Big Lake Township.  Local law enforcement and EMS responded to the residence where 62-year-old Darren Laney Sr. was discovered deceased.  Maine State Police Major Crimes Unit North was called to investigate the circumstances surrounding the death.  The investigation led to the arrest of Laney Sr.’s son 36-year-old Darren Laney Jr. for murder.  Maine State Police Detectives arrested Laney Jr. at Indian Township PD without incident. Laney Jr. was taken to the Washington County Jail. 

The following agencies assisted in the initial response and further investigation:  Washington County Sheriff’s Office, Maine State Police Troop J, Indian Township Police Department, Passamaquoddy Warden Service, US Border Patrol, Maine Warden Service and Passamaquoddy Fire Rescue.

This is an active investigation. Additional information to follow when appropriate.
 

Washington County Homicide

From the desk of Shannon Moss, DPS PIO

On Wednesday, February 9, 2022 at approximately 5:33 p.m., the Washington County Sheriff’s Office responded to 515 Leighton Point Road in Pembroke to a report of an unresponsive female.  When deputies arrived, the female was discovered deceased and the circumstances were suspicious.  Maine State Police Major Crimes Unit North and the Maine State Police Evidence Response Team responded to the residence to continue to investigate the circumstances surrounding her death.  The victim was later transported to the Office of the Chief Medical Examiner in Augusta where an autopsy was performed on Thursday, February 10, 2022.  The victim has been identified as 53-year-old Paula Johnson of Pembroke.  The results of the autopsy has ruled the death to be a homicide.  Maine State Police continue to investigate and are asking for the public’s help.  If anyone has information about the death or saw anything on the Leighton Point Road in the last few days that seems suspicious, please call the Maine State Police dispatch in Bangor at 973-3700 and leave a message for Detective Adam Bell.

That is all of the information we will be releasing at this time.
 

An Aroostook County woman is in critical condition after being shot inside her home

From the desk of Shannon Moss, DPS PIO.

On Wednesday, January 26, 2022, at 10:17 p.m., the Houlton Regional Communication Center received a 911 call from a male, later identified as 24-year-old Joshua Prestwood of Easton, as he drove his girlfriend to the Northern Light AR Gould Hospital in Presque Isle. Prestwood alleged that his girlfriend was shot during a home invasion, and the unknown suspect fled the scene. The female victim was flown by Life Flight to Northern Light Eastern Maine Medical Center in Bangor with a gunshot wound.

Detectives from the Maine State Police Major Crimes Unit-North investigated the incident with assistance from MSP Troop F, MSP Evidence Response Team, and the Presque Isle Police Department. After several days of investigation, on Tuesday, February 1, 2022, Prestwood was arrested by detectives in Presque Isle. Prestwood was charged with Domestic Violence Aggravated Assault, Theft by Unauthorized Taking or Transfer, and Domestic Violence Reckless Conduct.

The victim’s name is not being released. Her status is critical but stable. 

The case remains under investigation.

Seacoast Crime Stoppers to offer reward in Maxine Bitomski cold case

Maxine BitomskiFrom the desk of Shannon Moss DPS PIO.


 On January 16, 1993, Maxine Bitomski was murdered inside her Kittery home. Despite extensive investigative efforts, no one has been arrested for Maxine’s murder, yet. The Maine State Police has made recent progress in the case and is looking for people to come forward with information that will lead to the arrest of Maxine’s killer. On Thursday, January 20, 2021, detectives from the Kittery Police Department and the Maine State Police’s Major Crimes Unit held a news conference in Kittery along with Maxine’s grandchildren to talk about the developments and ask the community can help.  
  
Recently Seacoast Crime Stoppers announced a $10,000 reward for anyone who provides information that leads to an indictment and/or arrest of a suspect in the Maxine Bitomski unsolved homicide.

Since 1983 Seacoast Crime Stoppers has been funded solely by the generosity of the Seacoast community. Because of that support they have received thousands of tips that have helped law enforcement agencies solve hundreds of crimes.

“Seacoast Crime Stoppers is committed to making our community a better and safer place,” said President Scott Forte. “We offer our sincere condolences to the family and friends of Maxine Bitomski and are hoping that the $10,000 reward we are offering can help bring a resolution to the unsolved homicide investigation.
 If you have any information about the Maxine Bitomski case please visit https://www.seacoastcrimestoppers.com/submit-a-tip/ or call 207.439.1199. The reward is eligible for anyone who provides a tip that leads to an indictment or an arrest. Seacoast Crime Stoppers can only make rewards and efforts like this possible with the generosity of our community. Please consider making a tax-deductible donation to Seacoast Crime Stoppers today at https://www.seacoastcrimestoppers.com/donation”
 

Lubec man accused of killing his girlfriend is arrested in Virginia

  From the desk of Shannon Moss, DPS PIO

On Monday, January 10, 2022, Washington County Sherriff’s Deputies received information about an altercation that happened at a home at 69 Jim’s Head Road in Lubec. When Deputies arrived at the residence they discovered evidence outside the home that led investigators to believe something suspicious happened at the residence. The Maine State Police Major Crimes Unit was called in to investigate. Officers began looking for the homeowner 58-year-old Eva Cox and her boyfriend, 65-year-old Paul DeForest who lived at the home with Cox.  A search warrant was prepared and members of the Maine State Police Major Crimes Unit and Evidence Response Team began processing the scene to look for information that would help them locate the occupants and determine what happened at the residence.

On Tuesday, January 11, 2022, a larger search was organized that included Maine State Police, Washington County Sheriff’s Office, Maine Marine Patrol, and Maine Warden Service. A Warden’s plane and a State Police K-9 were also utilized in the search around Cox’s home. That investigation led to the discovery of a female victim found deceased locked in the trunk of a car that was located nearby the residence. The victim has not been officially identified but it is believed to be Eva Cox. The official identity will be determined by the Office of the Chief Medical Examiner when an autopsy is performed in the coming days.

During the investigation, additional information was obtained that led investigators to seek an arrest warrant for murder for Paul DeForest.  DeForest was found to be at a residence in Warrenton, VA. Members of the Fauquier County Sheriff’s Department responded to that residence and negotiated with DeForest over the phone to come out of the residence and after a short time, he did.  DeForest was arrested without further incident. DeForest will be held on a fugitive from a justice warrant.

That is the only information we will be releasing at this time. For a booking photo please contact the Fauquier County Sheriff’s Department.

Washington County woman arrested for murder in the shooting death of ex-boyfriend

On Sunday, December 26, 2021, at approximately 8:52 pm, a 911 call was received from 47 Tranquility Lane in Perry reporting a male subject had been shot. Police officers from Pleasant Point PD and the Washington County Sheriff’s Office as well as EMTs arrived at the residence to find the victim, 50-year-old Jason “Cowboy” Aubuchon of Eastport, had been shot. Aubuchon was transported to Calais hospital where he was pronounced dead. The Maine State Police Major Crimes Unit was called to investigate the death. Aubuchon was transported to the Office of the Chief Medical Examiner in Augusta where an autopsy was performed on Monday, December 27, 2021. The death was ruled a homicide. Members of the Maine State Police Evidence Response Team processed the residence while detectives continued to investigate the circumstances of the death. On Thursday, December 30, 2021, an arrest warrant for the charge of murder was obtained for 40-year-old Danielle Wheeler of Perry. Wheeler who was Aubuchon’s ex-girlfriend was located in Perry and was arrested without incident. Wheeler was transported to the Washington County Jail. Her initial appearance has not been determined. 
 

Death of 17 year old in Machias ruled a homicide

From the desk of Shannon Moss, DPS PIO

Maine State Police continue to investigate a death that occurred in Machias on Thursday, November 4, 2021. 
The Washington County Sheriff’s Office received a complaint of what sounded like gunshots near High street at approximately 12:24 a.m. on November 4, 2021.  The sheriff’s department responded to the area but did not locate any people or vehicles that seemed suspicious.  At approximately 7:52 a.m., a resident of High Street was leaving her home when she saw a deceased male on the lawn.  The police were called and responded.  The Maine State Police Major Crimes Unit was called and continues to investigate the circumstances of the death.  The victim is a 17 year old male from New York.  The victim was transported to the Office of the Chief Medical Examiner where an autopsy was performed Friday, November 5, 2021. The death is being ruled as a homicide.  The police are seeking the public’s help.  If anyone has information pertaining to this situation or saw something in the vicinity of High street between midnight and 8 a.m. on November 4th, please contact the Maine State Police at 973-3700 and leave a message for lead detective, Det. Chad Lindsey.  The State Police are being assisted by Machias Police Department, Washington County Sheriff’s Department, Maine Warden Service, MDEA and USBP.  The Police do not believe there is an ongoing public safety concern.
 

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Investigation of baby death in Oakland leads to major drug seizure 

Oakland Drug SeizureFrom the desk of Shannon Moss, DPS PIO

On Tuesday, November 2, 2021 at approximately 12:07 p.m. Maine State Police Major Crimes Unit Detectives responded to 26 Oak Street Apt. 2 in Oakland at the request of the Oakland Police Department. 21-year-old Ashley Malloy called 911 to report her 14-month-old child, Karson Malloy was having a medical emergency. The child was transported to Inland hospital in Waterville where he was pronounced dead. After a preliminary investigation, State Police Detectives applied for and were granted a search warrant for the apartment the child and mother lived in. Inside the apartment, Detectives located  5.85 lbs. of fentanyl, 3.4 lbs. of methamphetamine, 1.35 pounds of crack cocaine, and $2,262 in cash and other items indicative of drug trafficking.

Malloy was charged Thursday, November 4, 2021, by MDEA with Class “A” Aggravated Trafficking in Schedule W drugs as a result of what was seized at the house. Malloy was arrested Thursday evening and released on unsecured bond.
The street value of the drugs seized was in the neighborhood of $700,000.

The drugs were turned over to the Maine Drug Enforcement agency while State Police Detectives continue to work with the Office of the Chief Medical Examiner to determine the cause of the child’s death. 
 

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