LEWISTON — A shot was fired on Granite Street Wednesday afternoon, and when rescue crews arrived they found a 63-year-old man bleeding badly from a gunshot wound.
Police swarmed on the dead-end section of Bates Street as the bleeding man collapsed next to a tenement building and a search got under way for the shooter.
Later Wednesday night, police arrested Steve Anctil, a 24-year-old local man with a criminal history of robberies and other crimes. Anctil was charged with elevated aggravated assault and robbery and taken to the Androscoggin County Jail in Auburn.
A woman who lives in the area said she heard a single shot at about 4 p.m. When she looked out on the street, she saw an older man bleeding heavily.
"He didn't look like he was going to make it," the woman said. "He was bleeding a lot. He somehow managed to make it to the steps, but that was it."
It looked like he had been shot in the abdomen, she said.
The victim, who witnesses said might be a meat salesman, was at Central Maine Medical Center later Wednesday night where he was recovering from surgery.
Police did not identify the man other than to say he was from the Casco area. His injury was described as serious but he was expected to survive, according to Lewiston police Chief Michael Bussiere.
Police questioned other tenants, as well as employees at nearby businesses. By nightfall, the investigation had broadened and more potential suspects were being questioned by detectives.
Another man who lives in the area said the neighborhood at the end of Bates Street is typically quiet. At the same time, he said, a lot of people wander to and from the apartment house on the corner. A lot of strangers come and go at weird hours, he said.
He did not know the man who was injured.
The woman who heard the gunshot said she had never seen the victim before she spotted him stumbling and bleeding in the street.
"I don't think he's been here before," the woman said. "Something ain't right about this."