AUGUSTA — A spotlight to mark the reopening of a Western Avenue restaurant on Wednesday was briefly mistaken for a visitor from outer space.

Augusta and state police responded to a report of a UFO hovering over Augusta around 8:30 p.m., said Deputy Chief Jared Mills of the Augusta police.

Augusta police received two complaints. Two people also reported the sighting to the Kennebec Journal. One of the callers was near the Kennebec River and another was near Shaw’s Plaza on Western Avenue.

Mills said the source of the UFO rumor turned out to be a spotlight being used by Margaritas Mexican Restaurant to celebrate its reopening.

“I was at Margaritas eating dinner with my family and can verify it was a light and not a UFO,” said Augusta police dispatcher Aaron Farrell.

The restaurant, located near the intersection of Western Avenue and Edison Drive, recently completed renovations and was shut down for about two weeks, said Rob Michaud, the kitchen manager.

Police asked the restaurant to shut off the light because of the complaints, Mills said, but Michaud said the restaurant may use the light again.

“The police officer just told us we had a complaint,” he said. “He didn’t say we had to shut it off.”

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