AUBURN — A Lewiston man was indicted this week on multiple felonies, including forcing his way into an apartment and using a loaded handgun to threaten the tenant, who defended himself with a machete-type knife.

Stephen Gurney Photo submitted by Lewiston Police Department

An Androscoggin County grand jury handed up an indictment Tuesday charging Stephen Gurney, 34, of 54 Blake St. with burglary with a firearm, a Class A felony, punishable by up to 30 years in prison.

He also faces Class C felony charges of criminal threatening with a dangerous weapon, possession of a firearm by a prohibited person and violation of condition of release, each punishable by up to five years in prison.

Gurney was charged by complaint in May, but felony charges must be brought by a grand jury after finding probable cause in order for the case to proceed to trial.

According to a police affidavit, Gurney’s girlfriend had stayed at the Lewiston apartment of Michael Lagasse, a longtime friend of Gurney, on the night of May 16 because she had been afraid of him.

The next day, she returned to Lagasse’s apartment to collect some of her clothes, Lagasse told police. But he refused to let her in because he believed she had stolen some of his belongings and said he would get her things for her.

Gurney arrived a short time later and the couple forced their way into Lagasse’s apartment, he told police.

He said Gurney brandished a small silver and white handgun, waved it around and racked the slide to load it. Lagasse said Gurney demanded his girlfriend’s belongings and pointed the gun at him.

When Gurney wasn’t looking, Lagasse produced a 2-foot long “machete-type knife” and struck Gurney’s arm twice with it, police wrote in the affidavit

Gurney and his girlfriend left the apartment.

Lagasse told police he picked up the gun and tossed it into a nearby backpack.

Police said several witnesses corroborated Lagasse’s story.

Gurney told police Lagasse had injured him with the machete in an unprovoked attack. He said any witnesses who said they saw him with a gun or threatening Lagasse were lying

Gurney remains at Androscoggin County Jail.


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