GARDINER — A man driving a car shot and killed himself shortly after being pulled over during a traffic stop Thursday evening, leading to the discovery of another person’s body in the trunk of the car, police said.
Maine Public Safety spokesman Steve McCausland said in a news release Thursday night that the car was pulled over after Maine State Police received a report of erratic driving on Interstate 295.
State police were investigating the incident on Timberwood Drive, releasing few details except to say the man driving the car died of suicide. Police did not release the identity of the man who shot himself.
In a short statement, Maj. Brian Scott said state police stopped a vehicle in the residential development around 4:45 p.m. Thursday off U.S. Route 201.
“The operator immediately got out of the vehicle and shot himself, resulting in his death,” Scott said. “While conducting the investigation, a body was located in the trunk.”
McCausland confirmed that information.
Scott and McCausland said there was no threat to public following the deaths.
“The investigation is ongoing and no more information at this time,” Scott said.
Starting at 28 Timberwood Drive, state and Gardiner Police had blocked off the road Thursday.
An evidence response team arrived about 6:30 p.m., and state police homicide detectives were also on the scene.
McCausland said in the release that “the bodies will be transported to the State Medical Examiner’s Office in Augusta for autopsies and examination.”
A state police wrecker arrived shortly before 8 p.m. to remove the vehicle in which the body had been found. The car pulled out by the state police wrecker was a blue Subaru with Massachusetts license plates.
A Gardiner Fire Department engine arrived at around 9 p.m. to clean up the scene.
Brandon Brown, 25, who lives nearby, said Thursday evening, “I was asleep and I woke up when the cops drove by. I didn’t hear or see nothing.”
Sam Shepherd — 621-5666