October 2, 2012

Pittston man facing gun charges for firing rifle during eviction of woman

22-year-old woman, who was evicted, summoned for possession of marijuana

By Craig Crosby ccrosby@centralmaine.com
Staff Writer

PITTSTON -- A local man is facing a host of charges after he reportedly fired a rifle during an attempt to get a woman to leave his Kelley Road home.

Donald Stuart, 54, of Pittston, was arrested early Sunday morning and charged with criminal threatening with a dangerous weapon, reckless conduct and assault. Stuart also was charged with possession of a firearm by a prohibited person, though he claimed at the time of his arrest that he had no previous felony convictions, police said.

Stuart was being held Monday at the Kennebec County jail in lieu of $1,000 cash bail or $20,000 property.

The woman Stuart evicted from his house, Kristen Marie Stewart, 22, of Waterville, was issued a summons charging her with possession of marijuana.

Stewart called police around 12:13 a.m. Friday, and said Stuart had pointed a gun at her and told her to leave, according to an affidavit filed by Kennebec County Sheriff Deputy Michel Dutil. Stewart said Stuart fired one round into the ground as he chased her out of the house.

Stewart ran to the home of a male neighbor, who let her in and shut the door. Stuart knocked on the door and then returned to his own home, Dutil said. The neighbor told responding deputies that he had a concealed weapons permit and was armed.

"He advised me to announce myself when I arrived," Dutil said.

Stuart, contacted by telephone, agreed to meet with Dutil. The deputy interviewed Stuart inside his home at 193 Kelley Road.

"He said he wanted Kristen out of the house," Dutil said. "He said Kristen had a friend over tonight for a while and he was sick of the fact she was not paying him rent."

Both individuals told Dutil that they were friends only and not a couple.

Stewart later told Dutil that she and Stuart had been getting along well until that night. She said Stuart had been drinking prior to the incident.

"She said Donald went and grabbed a rifle out of his gun case and she asked if he was shooting tonight," Dutil said. "She said he loaded it and held it out and told her to go, pointing to the back door."

Stuart repeated the command and began following her out the back door, pushing her as she went, Dutil said. Once outside Stewart began to run.

"She said Donald shot a round from the gun," Dutil said. "She said she was turning around and saw him pointing the rifle at the ground when he shot."

Stewart said Stuart continued to point the gun at her as she ran down the driveway toward the neighbor's house. She said Stuart knocked on the door as she called for help.

Stuart subsequently acknowledged firing a .22-caliber round as a warning shot. Deputies found a .22-caliber shell in the backyard, Dutil said.

Craig Crosby -- 621-5642


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