Authorities reported on Wednesday that a 34-year-old man who had just been released from prison had shot and murdered his parents and two others at their home in Bowdoin, Maine on Tuesday morning before wounding three others while driving on an interstate highway.
Col. William Ross of the Maine State Police stated on Friday that Joseph Eaton was freed from jail after serving two years for aggravated assault. A news statement and Ross state that the defendant admitted to shooting at vehicles he believed had officers who were tailing him on the highway and killed his parents and their friends.
Robert Eger, 72, Patricia Eger, 62, Cynthia Eaton, 62, and David Eaton, 66, were named by Ross as the victims who were found dead. According to Ross, the bodies of David Eaton, the Egers, and Cynthia Eaton were all located within the residence.
At 9:21 a.m., a family member who had been worried about the home’s owners went there and discovered one of the victims, according to officials. About 20 minutes later, when the Sagadahoc County Sheriff’s deputies arrived, they discovered the remaining casualties.
According to Ross, the investigation into the shootings on Tuesday was “probably one of the most dynamic, certainly criminal investigations, crimes in progress that we’ve seen in Maine if not in recent times, ever.”
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Reports of gunfire on southbound Interstate 295 prompted police and state troopers to the area about 10:30 a.m. According to Ross, Joseph Eaton was discovered in some woods close to where he had parked the car he was thought to be driving.
Ross told reporters that 25-year-old Paige Halsey is in serious condition, while 52-year-old Sean Halsey and 29-year-old Justin Halsey both had non-life-threatening injuries. According to the authorities, they have no doubt that Eaton acted alone.
Like people across Maine, I am shocked and deeply saddened — acts of violence like we experienced today shake our state and our communities to the core. https://t.co/YTo0oMsyg1
— Governor Janet Mills (@GovJanetMills) April 18, 2023
State police stated in a statement Tuesday night that Eaton had been arrested and was being held at Two Bridges Regional Jail until his first court appearance later in the week. As of Wednesday, officials have solely accused Eaton of the murders.
CNN has not been able to locate an attorney willing to represent Eaton. In a statement on Twitter, Maine Gov. Janet Mills said, “Like people across Maine, I am shocked and deeply saddened – acts of violence like we experienced today shake our state and our communities to the core.”
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