LEE, Maine (AP) — A former convict beat a man and stole guns and a pickup truck before shooting five people, two of them fatally, during a rampage across several northern Maine towns, state police said Friday.
Anthony Lord was arrested at his uncle's home in Houlton and faces murder and kidnapping charges, and a woman who was being held with him was safe, state police Lt. Sean Hashey said.
Investigators were searching for a motive for the shootings, which left 58-year-old Kevin Tozier and 22-year-old Kyle Hewitt dead. Two other men and one woman were being treated for gunshot wounds and were expected to survive, police said.
Officers, detectives and evidence technicians will work through the weekend to piece the case together, Hashey said.
Dozens of law enforcement officers had been searching for Lord after an outburst of violence that started Thursday night with a fire at a barn in Benedicta and then escalated early Friday when a man was robbed of his guns and pickup truck in Silver Ridge.
Before his arrest, Lord shot people in Benedicta and Lee, police said.
Lord faces two counts of murder and one count of kidnapping, police said. Additional charges will likely be added, they said.
Lord was being questioned late Friday and was expected to spend the weekend in the Aroostook County Jail before his initial court appearance, anticipated early next week.
Lord, 35, has a criminal record that includes convictions for domestic assault, criminal threatening and assault, police said. He was placed on the state's sex-offender registry after being convicted of unlawful sexual contact with someone under the age of 14.
State police also are investigating the death of his 6-month-old son, who was discovered unresponsive by his mother in Millinocket in May.
Police said the first shootings happened at the home of Lord's brother, where windows and the doors were shot out but no one was injured.
From there, Lord returned to the site of the barn fire and the home where 22-year-old Brittany Irish lived to get her, Hashey said. There, he shot Hewitt, who was Irish's boyfriend, and her 55-year-old mother, Kim Irish, police said.
A state police major crimes unit truck and several officers sat outside the Irishes' home in rural Benedicta on Friday evening. Dogs barked in the backyard, and smoke rose from the charred remains of the barn.
Carlton Eddy was shot through the window of his truck in the home's driveway, police said. Tozier and 54-year-old Clayton McCarthy were shot at a woodlot in Lee where a logging truck was stolen after Lord ditched the pickup, they said.
Police said Lord and Irish knew each other but would not say how.
Residents said the region is normally quiet and peaceful.
"It's mind-blowing. To see a SWAT team in Lee or Lincoln is ridiculous," said Rick Jipson, a mechanic who lives nearby in Lowell.
But they didn't appear to be panicked by the police presence.
"We're pretty well armed around here," said James Knealand, who works at Lincoln Pulp & Paper and lives near a police checkpoint in Lee.
Associated Press writer David Sharp contributed to this report.