Police continue to search for a 7-month-old Labrador retriever puppy believed to have been thrown from its owner’s car during a crash Tuesday morning in Madison.

The crash, which happened about a mile north of the Lakewood Golf Course on U.S. Route 201, may have been caused by distracted driving and severely injured the driver, Shanya Pottle, 20, of South China, according to Chief Deputy James Ross, of the Somerset County Sheriff’s Office.

The driver’s family and police are still looking for the dog, which has been missing since the 11 a.m. Tuesday accident. Ross said the dog was thrown from the car and that police have “no reason to believe it isn’t alive.”

The name of the dog, a “very white” yellow Labrador retriever, according to Ross, was not immediately available Wednesday.

“I am sure it’s scared to death after a ride like that,” Ross said.

Pottle, the dog’s owner, was taken to Maine Medical Center in Portland for treatment of serious head injuries and possible broken bones. A spokeswoman said Wednesday that the hospital had no information on her condition.


Pottle was driving north around 11 a.m. Tuesday on U.S. Route 201 when her car veered off the right side of the road, struck a driveway and became airborne before it rolled over several times, according to a news release Ross sent Tuesday.

A truck driver who saw the crash said Pottle had passed him moments earlier and told police that she appeared to have been using a cellphone when she passed him, according to Ross.

Pottle was unconscious when police and rescue personnel arrived on scene and had to be extricated from the vehicle.

Ross said Wednesday that no further information was available on whether distracted driving was to blame for the crash and whether there would be charges.

The Somerset County Sheriff’s Office has asked that anyone who sees the dog call the Somerset County Communications Center at 474-6386.

Rachel Ohm — 612-2368

[email protected]

Twitter: @rachel_ohm

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