Two juveniles make court appearances in separate Lewiston arson cases

Daryn Slover/Sun Journal

Charles Epps and Jessica Reilly, the mother of 12-year-old Brody Covey of Lewiston, step outside 8th District Court in Lewiston on Monday. Covey is charged with setting a fire outside 105 Blake St. in Lewiston on April 29.

LEWISTON — The aunt of a 12-year-old local boy charged with three counts of arson said Monday she doesn't think her nephew committed the arsons.

Daryn Slover/Sun Journal

Ami Reilly, the aunt of 12-year-old Brody Covey, said that she doesn't think her nephew started the fire at 105 Blake St. in Lewiston on April 29 when three buildings were burned.

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Daryn Slover/Sun Journal

Charles Epps and Jessica Reilly, the mother of 12-year-old Brody Covey of Lewiston, step outside 8th District Court in Lewiston on Monday. Covey is charged with setting a fire outside 105 Blake St. in Lewiston on April 29.

"I don't really think he could have," Ami Reilly said at 8th District Court. "I don't see Brody (Covey) as that type of child."

Covey had lived with Reilly two years ago for several months when she had temporary custody of him, she said. She characterized him as a good student. He never showed an interest in fire or anything having to do with fire, even refusing to get close to the stove, she said.

"Brody was a really good kid," she said. "He was never in trouble. Always went to church."

She said she thinks the multiple arson charges are "really bogus."

She said she brought him food the day of the fire at 105 Blake St. and again the day after, when he was staying with friends. 

She hadn't seen him much lately, she said, since he was living with his mother's boyfriend in the condemned building at Blake Street. She said he didn't want to live there.

Covey is a seventh-grade student at Lewiston Middle School. He was represented in court Monday by local attorney Alan Lobozzo. Covey is facing three counts of felony arson in connection with a fire intentionally set at the back of 105 Blake St. last Monday. Covey lived there on the second floor with his mother, Jessica Reilly,  and her live-in boyfriend, Charles Epps, and three siblings.

Covey is one of two 12-year-old boys, each arrested on multiple counts of arson in connection with two separate fires set in the downtown last week, who made their respective initial appearances on detention hearings in 8th District Court on Monday afternoon.

The hearings were closed to the public by Judge John Beliveau, who said juvenile proceedings are private unless a juvenile petition has been filed against a defendant charged with a felony.

A Monday fire destroyed the Blake Street apartment building, and properties on Pine and Bates streets.

The family, which had been ordered to leave the Blake Street property, had filed a temporary restraining order to be allowed to remain in their apartment until a court hearing that had been scheduled for this Wednesday.

The Red Cross placed the family temporarily at the Ramada Inn.

The second boy, who has not yet been identified, is being represented by Lewiston attorney Jeffrey Dolley, who was meeting in court Monday afternoon with a Somali family and an interpreter. That boy was arrested on four felony counts of arson in connection with a fire that destroyed two buildings on Pierce Street and two buildings on Bartlett Street late Friday night.

Although the court released Covey's name to the Sun Journal on Friday, it declined to release the name of the second defendant on Monday.

"We're working on something right now that's going to be a suitable plan for the community and the child," Dolley said after the hearing.

At Monday's hearing, Assistant District Attorney Melanie Portas said she hadn't received the complete police reports that she must have in order to file juvenile petitions against the boys, formalizing the charges.

The boys, who have each been detained at Long Creek Youth Development Center in South Portland since their arrests, made their separate appearances for detention hearings to determine whether they will be returned to the juvenile facility or released in the custody of a guardian.

Neither child left the courthouse with their relatives on Monday.

They will both be arraigned on the respective charges on Monday, May 13, in 8th District Court, when they are expected to deny the charges. State law requires those appearances to be open to the public.

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Sandy Mabry's picture

special rights and diversity

There is something i don't understand for the past year or so all we have seen on the front page of the newspaper is all the good the somalis have done for the city of lewiston and they want diversity so why is it now that the other 12 yr old i guess because he's white has his name and picture plastered on the front page of the newspaper and the 12 year old from friday's fire is hush hush because he's somali well i have to say if i was brody mom i would be very angry wow now i know why there will never be diversity because of their special rights that is so messed up

Eric  LeBlanc's picture

they shouldn't have released

they shouldn't have released either child's name

 's picture

They have to

By law when someone is charged with a Class A felony, their name is released, even if it is a juvenile. They may not release anything else about the case other than the verdict, but they release that. Eventually the paperwork will catch up and we will see charges and the name of the other boy.

Robert McQueeney's picture

Adult crime, adult time

These boys, angels in their mothers' eyes have done a serious amount of damage, and endangered countless lives. The seriousness of these crimes should not be discounted. They have (allegedly) committed adult crimes, let them face adult time.

Jeff Johnson's picture

Bob: If people were killed

Bob: If people were killed and if it were proven that the kids either did this for profit or gang initiation I'd agree that they should do adult time. But putting a 12-year-old in an adult prison is a fate worse than death.

Robert McQueeney's picture

I'm not saying putting a 12

I'm not saying putting a 12 year in an adult prison. Put them in juvie, then when they are 18, move them to adult.

 's picture

This is the end result of the

This is the end result of the liberal moonbat democrat policies. For years they have said fathers are not important but maybe with a strong male influence we would be reading a different story about this kid. The important and all defing aspect of democrats is that they appear virtuous and compassionate while any attack on their self'-perception causes their world to crumble. No matter how many times they repeat the narrative it will not make it true regardless of what Josef Gobbels said. Who am I to judge you ask? A member of society that has to pay for the mistakes of foolish people and idiot politicians, that's who.If the democrats are allowed to run amok for much longer then in about years Lewiston and much of America will look like a cross between Mad Max and The Hunger Games. good luck everyone.

Kim Waite's picture


....whenever I go to Lewiston I never think of that city as a liberal nirvana. It always screams "toothless uneducated right wing nutjobs" to me. The city government has nothing to do with the crime in Lewiston. It has to do with all those right wing druggies who bring their friends in from out of state to help them with their dealings.

Right wingers and their policies running amok have hurt our nation since the Civil War. They're the 'pull yourself up by the bootstraps' kind of people and they can't understand why so many turn to dealing drugs and violent crime for their bootstraps!

 's picture

I know it's spelled *defining

I know it's spelled *defining and in 10 years or so. Sorry, but sometimes I type in a stream of consciousness crossed with fits of rage style. It beats the hunt and peck method.



white boy gets his name plastered in the paper, while the other protected race in Lewiston is kept secret, and then they wonder why do people get angry with the city for showing race favoritism.

JERRY ARIPEZ's picture

Double Hmmmm

Perception maybe your reality...

Kim Waite's picture

I bet the 12 year old's name has been withdrawn

because the right wing nutjobs in Lewiston may hurt the family members, because we all know how much Lewiston is a "liberal city" where everyone is accepted and gets along! Yesiree, there isn't one angry racist in that city....nope... uh ah....nadda! /s

 's picture

i agree they keep saying that

i agree they keep saying that neither have been formally charged then why are they releasing the first boys name but not the second i dont know if it is due to race but it sounds like it to me.

JERRY ARIPEZ's picture

Maybe not

Ever think that it could possibly be the child is handicapped or mentally disabled?


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