New details have been released about a police-involved shooting in Oxford County that was witnessed by a resident who shot video of the encounter.

Police Have Identified the Suspect Who Stole 2 Cruisers Before Being Shot At By Police

Gary Porter, 37, who is unhoused, is charged with two counts of theft, assault on a police officer, escape, eluding, and violation of bail.

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Maine Department of Public Safety Spokesperson Shannon Moss says the incident began just after 7:15 Monday morning, when the Paris Police Department responded to a report of a suspicious male. The suspect was identified as Porter, who was wanted on an outstanding warrant for felony theft. He was arrested and taken to Stephen's Memorial Hospital where he was treated and released for conditions unrelated to the arrest.

Paris Police Chief Mike Dailey transported Porter to the Oxford County Jail. But when he tried to remove Porter from the vehicle a the jail, the suspect slipped his cuffs from the back to the front, moved into the driver's seat, and stole the Paris Police cruiser. Chief Dailey was thrown from the moving vehicle while attempting to stop Porter.

Multiple departments responded to the scene and began pursuing Porter, who crashed in Route 117 in Paris. Officers confronted Porter and gunfire was exchanged, during which time Porter was struck by bullets. Still, he was able to flee from officers and stole an Oxford County Sheriff's Police vehicle, which he then crashed a short distance up the road. Porter was taken into custody and treated at a local hospital. Once he was released, he was transported to the Oxford County Jail.

A Witness Caught the Second Cruiser Theft and Shootout on Video

I think I speak for most people when I say we hope to never be in the same shoes as Linda Marie Mercer, who turned onto Streaking Mountain Road and was stopped by a large number of police vehicles surrounding another police cruiser that was in the ditch. In the video she took, officers can be heard yelling to the suspect, encouraging him to give himself up. Despite a volley of gunfire, the stolen cruiser can be seen driving away from the scene.

Warning: The video contains strong language. Images may be disturbing to some. The suspect can be seen exiting the cruiser at approximately 1:35 into the video.

The Incident is Under Investigation By the Maine Attorney General's Office

All the officers involved have been placed on administrative leave pending the outcome of an investigation by the State Attorney General's Office, which is standard procedure in all police-involved shootings.

They are:

  • Sergeant Dan Hanson of the Maine State Police
  • Trooper Tyler Nadeau of the Maine State Police
  • Lieutenant Justin Brown of the Oxford County Sheriff's Office
  • Deputy Jeffrey Howe of the Oxford County Sheriff's Office
  • Deputy Danielle Vienneau of the Oxford County Sheriff's Office
  • Deputy William Nelson of the Oxford County Sheriff's Office
  • Detective Gary Hill of the Norway Police Department
  • Corporal Robert Ferdico of the Norway Police Department
  • Sergeant Allen Coffin of the Paris Police Department
  • Chief Rickie Jack of the Oxford Police Department
  • Officer Michael Rioux of the Oxford Police Department

We'll update this story as more details become available. 

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