A still image from a street surveillance video on Oct. 24, 2019, shows a minivan in the middle of the intersection at Pine and Bartlett streets and a woman lying on her side in the street. Julianne Dawson, formerly of Lewiston, submitted the image as part of her civil complaint against then-Lewiston mayoral candidate Mark Cayer, who acknowledged hitting her in the crosswalk on Pine Street, according to the complaint. Sun Journal photo from court file

AUBURN —  A pedestrian struck in a crosswalk on Pine Street in Lewiston in 2019 by then-Lewiston mayoral candidate Mark Cayer is suing him for damages.

Julianne Dawson, who lived in Lewiston at the time, but since moved to Massachusetts, filed a civil complaint in Androscoggin County Superior Court in Auburn the end of May.

Dawson said in her complaint that she had been in a marked crosswalk at the intersection of Pine and Bartlett streets Oct. 24, 2019, when she was struck by a minivan driven by Cayer, who was driving on Pine Street.

She wrote that Cayer “was distracted and diverted his attention away from the road in front of him.”

At the time of the collision, Dawson was about halfway across the crosswalk, she said.

Cayer was driving fast enough that the impact “threw the plaintiff up onto the hood of his car, into the air, and she landed hard on the pavement on her side and arm.”


A police report said Cayer was not speeding.

The complaint includes a still image captured from street surveillance video showing the minivan in the middle of the intersection and a woman lying in the roadway on her side.

“Mark Cayer was careless and negligent in failing to yield the right of way to the plaintiff as she crossed Pine Street in a marked crosswalk and as a result, struck her with his vehicle,” the complaint said.

Police issued a citation for failure to yield to a pedestrian in a crosswalk to which Cayer admitted and paid a $180 fine, according to the complaint.

In Cayer’s response to the complaint, he said he was driving on Pine Street and had been looking at a bicyclist and scooter to his right at the time of the collision.

Cayer “admits that he struck the plaintiff with his van as she was in the crosswalk crossing Pine Street,” but he denied other assertions about his actions alleged in her complaint.


In her complaint, Dawson said she suffered “severe, disabling and permanent injuries (and) has incurred and will in the future incur expenses for medical treatment (and) has lost wages.”

Dawson is seeking damages for alleged negligence.

Cayer was elected mayor of Lewiston in November 2019 and served a two-year term.

In a Sun Journal story published in 2019, Cayer said he met with Dawson to apologize.

“I just feel terrible for her,” Cayer said, “but it was an accident.”

Dawson said she accepted his apology and called it an accident.

On his campaign’s Facebook page in October 2019, Cayer said it was “important for me to share this with the community.”

That disclosure was the first news of the accident.

Cayer faced Tim Lajoie and Charles Soule in that mayoral race. Cayer had said he didn’t believe the accident just weeks before Election Day would affect the outcome of that race.

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