Maine Shooting Suspect Got Out of Prison Days Earlier

Joseph Eaton accused of killing 4 at rural home before shooting at cars on interstate
By Rob Quinn,  Newser Staff
Posted Apr 18, 2023 6:11 PM CDT
Updated Apr 19, 2023 1:59 PM CDT
4 Dead, 3 Hurt in Maine Shootings
A police officer stands on the corner of Portland Street and Main Street in Yarmouth, Maine, on Tuesday, April 18, 2023. e public.   (Michael Leonard via AP)
UPDATE Apr 19, 2023 1:59 PM CDT

The man accused of killing four people at a home in Maine Tuesday before injuring three people in their vehicles on an interstate highway had only been out of prison for a few days, officials say. The Maine Department of Corrections says Joseph Eaton, 34, was released Friday from the Maine Correctional Center, where he had been serving time for a probation violation, the AP reports. Eaton was taken into custody after the highway shootings, in which victims were apparently shot at random. One victim is still in critical condition. In Facebook posts on Monday, Eaton wrote about his wish to be forgiven and complained about not being given a second chance, the Portland Press Herald reports.

Apr 18, 2023 6:11 PM CDT

Police in Maine say a suspect is in custody after two linked shootings left four people dead and three people injured. Police say four people were found dead in a home in the town of Bowdoin Tuesday morning, the Portland Press Herald reports. Soon after the bodies were found, three people were shot in their vehicles around 25 miles to the south on Interstate 295 in Yarmouth. A portion of the highway was closed and residents and businesses in the area were told to shelter in place for around 90 minutes, reports the AP. Police have not released the names of the victims or the person taken into custody.

Lenora Felker, who works at Rosemont Market and Bakery near the interstate, tells that AP that a stream of people saying the highway was closed was followed by dozens of law enforcement officers. She says officers asked businesses if they had seen "anyone that was wet and muddy fleeing." Maine Gov. Janet Mills said she was praying for the injured. "Like people across Maine, I am shocked and deeply saddened," she tweeted. "Acts of violence like we experienced today shake our state and our communities to the core." (More Maine stories.)

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