A Wisconsin man wanted in connection with a break-in at an Augusta church was arrested Tuesday afternoon while on a bus going out of town.

James Wilbur, 32, was arrested around 1:15 p.m. after Augusta police stopped a Concord Coach Lines bus on Interstate 95.

“Wilbur was riding on this bus and was taken into custody,” said Augusta Police Sgt. Christian Behr.

Wilbur is charged with being a fugitive from justice, though additional charges are pending in connection with an overnight burglary at the Unitarian Universalist Church on Summer Street. All the items appeared to have been taken from the office, Behr said.

He said police consider Wilbur a suspect in another local burglary, but he declined to say where that break-in occurred.

Rev. Carie Johnsen of the Unitarian Universalist Church declined to comment on the burglary.


The burglary was reported around 9:30 a.m. Tuesday, Behr said. About 45 minutes later, a man was reported at the Kennebec Savings Bank on State Street attempting to cash a check made out to Johnsen, who is a woman.

The report kicked off an “extensive” search that included the use of a Maine State Police trooper with a dog, but Wilbur was able to get away, Behr said.

Police reached out to the public for help, and Behr said information detectives received led to an apartment where Wilbur was staying.

“Upon arrival it was determined Wilbur had already left and was going to take a bus to leave town,” Behr said.

Augusta police stopped the bus in the southbound lane of Interstate 95, just north of the Gardiner line. Wilbur was arrested without incident.

“We appreciate all the assistance from the public on this one as several of their tips led us to make this apprehension,” Behr said.


Behr said other police departments in southern Maine have outstanding cases involving Wilbur.

“We know that he’s involved in other activities in southern Maine,” Behr said. “I don’t think he’s been around Augusta much.”

Police were still rounding up warrants on Wilbur, but Behr said one of the warrants originated in Florida and includes an extraditable charge, which means it’s a felony. Another warrant, charging a probation violation, originated in Wisconsin.

Behr was unsure of the charges in the warrants, but said none appeared to include violence.

Craig Crosby — 621-5642

[email protected]

Twitter: @CraigCrosby4

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