AUGUSTA — A man who fled into the woods in China late Saturday night after allegedly threatening to kill family members with a screwdriver went before a judge on Monday via video from the Kennebec County jail.

Dwayne A. Kuse, 46, was arrested in the woods near the Mann Road home, the site of the alleged threats, after a police dog tracked him and bit him.

Kuse was treated at the Augusta hospital for bite wounds before being brought to Kennebec County jail early Sunday.

According to an affidavit by Sgt. Jacob Pierce of the Kennebec Sheriff’s office, police responded to a Mann Road address after a woman reported that her ex-boyfriend was intoxicated, pushed her and “threatened to stab everyone at the residence with the screwdriver and that he was holding it in a threatening manner.” There were seven people at the home, including Kuse.

Then the woman called again to indicate Kuse was hollering in the driveway “that he was going to kill everyone and to ‘come find me.'” Later, she called again to say he was yelling, “I’m going to slice your throats tonight.” She also said there was a loaded handgun in the home.

Kuse then fled into the garage and finally into the woods.


He was located about 80 meters inside the woods, according to the report, and was bitten by Maine State Trooper G. J. Neagle’s dog, Draco.

Kuse was treated on site for the bite wounds and then taken to MaineGeneral Medical Center.

Kuse, who was wearing a short-sleeved green jail uniform, had no visible wounds on Monday.

Maine State Police Sgt. Scott Dalton, who runs the K-9 Training Center at the Maine Criminal Justice Academy, said Monday, “Apprehension canines are trained to bite and hold suspects.”

Pierce wrote that Kuse hollered at him during the ride to the jail and again threatened to kill people, including Pierce, after he was released from jail.

“He threatened to kill the officer by putting a bullet between his eyes,” Assistant District Attorney Alisa Ross told Judge Evert Fowle at Monday’s hearing in the Capital Judicial Center, adding, “Alcohol was certainly a factor.”


Attorney Dennis Jones, serving as lawyer of the day, represented Kuse at the hearing and said, “There’s no question alcohol was involved. I believe there was serious intoxication.”

However, Jones sought a lower bail amount of $1,000 cash with a Maine Pretrial Services contract, saying Kuse hopes to get admitted to a detoxification unit at the VA Maine Healthcare System at Togus. Jones said Kuse is a longtime employee of Togus, a homeowner and had previously completed a probationary period successfully.

Kuse was held without bail over the weekend. On Monday, Fowle set bail at $5,000 cash or alternatively at $1,500 cash with a Maine Pretrial Services contract. Bail conditions prohibit Kuse from contact with his ex-girlfriend, from being anywhere in the Town of China, and from using alcohol and illegal drugs.

“These allegations are quite serious, and a significant bail is mandated,” Fowle said.

Kuse did not answer to the charge of domestic violence criminal threatening with a dangerous weapon, a felony level charge which would have to be presented to a grand jury. However, Kuse pleaded not guilty to two related misdemeanor charges, domestic violence assault and domestic violence terrorizing. All the offenses allegedly occurred on Saturday in China.

Newspaper records indicate Kuse graduated from the Co-Occurring Disorders and Veterans Court, a specialty court aimed at helping defendants with mental health and substance abuse problems, in late December 2014. He was admitted to the veterans court program, which operated out of Kennebec Superior Court, on Oct. 18, 2013, about eight months after he was charged with assault in South China.


After successfully completing that program, he was sentenced in January 2015 to 364 days in jail with all but 10 days suspended, those to be served in the alternative sentencing program, and one year probation.

He completed that probation several months ago, Ross told the judge. Ross also said the victim in that assault was not the same victim in the new charges.

Kuse’s next court hearing is set for 2 p.m. Dec. 6 at the Capital Judicial Center.

Betty Adams — 621-5631

Twitter: @betadams

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