Four Saco trekkers facing charges

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FRYEBURG – A leisurely trip down the Saco River was cut short for four New Hampshire people last weekend after they were arrested and charged with trespassing on a summer camp’s property.

Arthur Robert Belanger, 28, of Exeter; Kelli E. Grant, 26, of Raymond; Steven Anthony Grant, 24, of Newbury; and Jason Paul Harrison, 24, of Manchester were each charged with criminal trespassing. All had made bail by Monday.

Police Chief Wayne Brooking said the group started their expedition early Saturday morning, letting the current carry them downstream.

“They had a few floats and a couple of backpacks,” Brooking said. “They didn’t even have a canoe.”

Brooking said they didn’t have any camping gear either, but made a stop on a beach opposite the Indian Acres Camp for Boys. Around 8 a.m., representatives from the camp found two of the group playing basketball on one of the camp’s courts.

Brooking said that the camp calls frequently to report people camping on its land.

“This is the first time they’ve actually come up into the camp,” he said.

The two were escorted from the camp and told that the sandbar they’d landed on was also camp property. Instead of floating on, they were still present around noon. That’s when the four were arrested by Cpl. Richard Murray and taken to the Oxford County Jail.

Brooking said the group had beer with them and had been drinking, but that no sobriety tests were administered. Kelli Grant was allegedly found to be in possession of a pipe and a small, usable amount of marijuana. Her bail was set at $500, while the other three had bail set at $200 each.

The four were forbidden from returning to Indian Acres. They are scheduled to appear in Bridgton District Court on Oct. 9.

According to the camp’s Web site, Indian Acres is running a summer session that began on June 22 and lasts until Aug. 10. Forest Acres Camp for Girls, which is under the same directorship as Indian Acres, operates two miles away.

Attempts to reach camp officials were unsuccessful Monday.

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