LEWISTON — An Auburn man denied a manslaughter charge Wednesday in connection to a car crash last year that killed a Turner teenager.

Spencer Dowd Androscoggin County Jail photo

Spencer W. Dowd, 20, of 396 Turner St., Auburn, appeared in 8th District Court with his defense attorney, Scott Lynch, where he also pleaded not guilty to the felony manslaughter charge that carries a maximum penalty of 30 years in prison.

He also denied a charge of eluding an officer, a felony punishable by up to 10 years in prison.

Dowd faces up to five years in prison on a felony charge to driving to endanger.

He also denied a misdemeanor charge of operating beyond license condition or restriction.

Dowd is free on personal recognizance, but must abide by conditions of his release, including no use or possession of alcohol and illegal drugs for which he can be searched and tested at random.

He is barred from having contact with more than a dozen people associated with the crash, including family members of the deceased teenager.

A grand jury indicted Dowd last month on the charges, a necessary step for the judge to accept his pleas on Wednesday.

Authorities said Dowd was driving a 2006 Honda Accord sedan on Route 4 on May 29, 2020, when it struck a utility pole and rolled over.

A passenger in the car, Julie Beaucage, 18, was killed in the crash; she was pronounced dead at the scene.

Dowd was critically injured, but eventually recovered from his injuries.

Another passenger, Keegan Pelletier, 19, of Auburn also was taken to the Lewiston hospital from which he was later released.

Investigators said an Androscoggin County deputy was parked on Route 4 at about 2:50 a.m. when the car went past at a high speed, passing other vehicles.

The deputy pursued the Honda, which continued southbound and nearly struck a Maine State Police cruiser, which was traveling north.

Dowd reportedly lost control of the car near Lake Shore Drive and his vehicle went off the east side of the road, striking and breaking a utility pole, then rolling over.

Dowd and Pelletier had to be extricated from the car by the Turner Fire Department.

The teens had been drinking and partying in Hartford earlier that night authorities said.

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