BY MATT HONGOLTZ-HETLING

Staff Writer

Attorney Ron Hoffman, accused of phoning in bomb threats to Wilton schools, submitted a not-guilty plea to two misdemeanor charges of terrorizing on Thursday, his lawyer said.

Portland-based attorney James Martemucci said that he also submitted a request to have the case tried by a jury in Franklin County Superior Court, rather than the district court.

Martemucci said that the plea could change based on the case’s progress.

Hoffman, 52, lives in Sumner and owns a law practice in Rumford.

On March 29, a man with slurred speech called in bomb threats to Wilton’s Academy Hill and Cushing schools, leading to the evacuation of about 360 children from the two buildings.

During a search, Maine State Police found no suspicious devices.

In late June, Wilton police Chief Heidi Wilcox announced that Hoffman had been charged with two counts of terrorizing after an investigation that included the use of phone records to trace the origin of the calls.

The two misdemeanor charges each carry a maximum penalty of 364 days in jail. Defendants may request a jury any time charges carry the threat of jail time, Martemucci said.

Hoffman, who graduated from the Massachusetts School of Law in 1996, has acted as the defense attorney in several high-profile cases in Maine, including that of murderer Christian Nielsen, who is serving a life sentence.

Matt Hongoltz-Hetling — 861-9287

[email protected]

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