CORNVILLE — The man arrested Monday after allegedly threatening people at the Cornville Regional Charter School has an extensive criminal history and was also on probation, according to police.

James L. Mayo, 42, of Cornville, was arrested on charges of terrorizing, criminal threatening, criminal mischief, refusing to submit to arrest or detention on two counts and violation of probation, said Deputy Chief Dale Lancaster of the Somerset County Sheriff’s Department.  

He pleaded not guilty to the charge of violation of probation and entered no plea on the other charges during an arraignment Tuesday in Somerset County Superior Court. He is being held at the Somerset County Jail without bail.

Lancaster said police responded to a report of someone threatening to kill the people inside the West Ridge Road school and pounding on the windows about 1:30 p.m. Monday. Mayo did not have a weapon, he said.

No students were at the school, but a few teachers and a custodian were preparing for the first day of classes today, school executive director Justin Belanger said.

“He was outside the building, apparently causing a ruckus, screaming and being belligerent,” Belanger said. “Thankfully, no one was hurt.”

The school’s custodian went outside to talk to Mayo and one of the teachers locked the doors of the school and called the police, he said. Mayo also damaged a snowmobile trailer filled with school furniture by tearing off the trailer’s lights and ripping apart its deck, he said.

Mayo acted combatively when told he was under arrest, Lancaster said. He said police tried to subdue Mayo with pepper spray and a stun gun, but he ran into the woods.

After police used a search dog to track him, Mayo threatened to kill an officer before police were able to arrest him, Lancaster said.

Belanger said he was thankful no one was hurt.

“The custodian and teachers did the right thing and locked down the school. The police did a good job of subduing him,” he said.

He said the school was open Tuesday and that he had been assured by the sheriff’s department that the campus is safe.

Lancaster said Mayo has an extensive criminal history. In January, he was convicted of criminal threatening with a dangerous weapon in Cornville and terrorizing in Skowhegan.

In 2011, he was convicted of terrorizing in February and again in September in Skowhegan, two counts of criminal mischief in May in Madison, and harassment by telephone in May in Fairfield.

He also was convicted of assault, disorderly conduct and violating a condition of release in 2006 in Madison.

Lancaster said police also responded to a report of disturbance by Mayo on Sunday at the Athens Corner Store and that they are investigating that incident.

Mayo is scheduled to appear on Oct. 8 in Somerset County Superior Court on the probation violation charge and in Skowhegan District Court on Oct. 30 on the other charges. Terrorizing is a class C felony punishable by up to five years in prison and a $5,000 fine.

Staff writer Doug Harlow contributed to this report.

Rachel Ohm —  612-2368
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