Police on lookout for Oxford Hills burglary suspects

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PARIS — Police are still seeking two suspects in connection with an Oxford burglary Tuesday in which a 9 mm handgun was taken.

Oxford police Chief Jonathan Tibbetts said Oxford Hills residents should consider Scott P. Bowie, 35, and an unknown companion dangerous and not approach them.

“They shouldn’t try to intervene. They should just call the local police department,” he said Wednesday.

According to Sgt. Rickie Jack, Oxford police are pursuing an arrest warrant for Bowie, who he said is out on bail. Bowie is described as 5 feet, 8 inches tall with brown hair, hazel eyes and a scar over his left eye. His last known address, according to Oxford police, is 18 Thurlow Ave. in Paris, although Paris police Chief David Verrier said Tuesday that Bowie lives in Oxford.

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Tibbetts said Bowie’s companion is heavy-set and probably female.

A neighbor called police Tuesday afternoon when he saw two people loading items from a house on Robinson Hill Road into a van. The two suspects fled in the van.

Police in Paris spotted it in that town and gave chase, and the vehicle eventually crashed into a tree at the corner of Paris Hill Road and Hooper Ledge Road. The two occupants fled into the woods near the Cornwall Nature Preserve, police said.

Oxford police Lt. Mike Ward said he identified items in the van as belonging to the homeowner, based on the owner’s description. Police believe Bowie and the companion took a 9 mm handgun and ammunition, which is missing from the burglarized house.

Tracking dogs from the Maine Warden Service and the Androscoggin County Sheriff’s Office sought the pair Tuesday.

Scott Parker, director of the Oxford County Emergency Management Agency, said residents with land-line telephones living within 1.5 miles of the site where the suspects crashed the van were notified by phone to stay inside because a fugitive was in the area. It was the first time the county had used its new CityWatch mass notification system.

“I put that into our system and sent it out. It took me about 10 minutes to do it,” Parker said. He was on the road when the alert went out, but was able to send an automated call through the CityWatch system from his laptop computer.

Parker said the message went out at about 4 p.m. to about 75 homes. At about 6 p.m. when tracking dogs failed to locate the fugitives, the county sent out another round of automated messages calling off the alert.

He said residents who don’t have home telephone lines and aren’t in the Emergency 911 database won’t receive such warning calls unless they enter their cellphone numbers at the Oxford County Emergency Management Agency website.

The Paris, Oxford and Norway police departments, the Oxford County Sheriff’s Office, the Maine State Police, the Warden Service and the Androscoggin County Sheriff’s Office have been working in the search.

Tibbetts and Jack said the suspects are probably still in the area.

treaves@sunjournal.com

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