A Richmond man has been charged with manslaughter in the beating death of his father, a retired teacher from Gardiner Community Middle School.

Kurt M. Linton, 54, of 29 Sharmac Lane, originally was arrested by Richmond police and charged with aggravated assault. His father, Malcolm Linton, 76, was assaulted Feb. 9 in his home and died Feb. 22 at MaineGeneral Medical Center in Augusta, where he was being treated for his injuries, according to Maine State Police.

Maine’s chief medical examiner, Dr. Mark Flomenbaum, who did an autopsy of Malcolm Linton’s body, ruled the cause of death “multiple complications following blunt impact of head,” according to an affidavit by Maine State Police Detective Joshua Birmingham.

The affidavit is filed in Sagadahoc County Superior Court, as is the complaint charging that the younger Linton “did recklessly or with criminal negligence” cause Malcolm Linton’s death.

The affidavit indicates that Richmond police went to Malcolm Linton’s home at 4:30 p.m. Feb. 9 after Sharon Linton — the victim’s wife — called to report that her son had been fighting with his father and that the son had left in her vehicle.

Police found Malcolm Linton suffering from trauma to the left side of his face.

“Malcolm Linton had blood on his forehead, blood in his left eye, severe bruising on forehead and down his left side. Malcolm Linton’s left eye was almost swollen shut,” Birmingham’s report says, adding that Malcolm Linton was unable to stand.

After Malcolm Linton was taken to the hospital, police found Kurt Linton. He told them he and his father had begun to argue, but he gave no reason.

“Kurt Linton talked to Sgt. (James) Donnell about abuse in the past by Malcolm Linton but said nothing happened that day,” the report said.

Police also took note that one of Kurt Linton’s eyes was red and appeared injured.

The son told police he had punched his father, and another officer indicated Linton said he pushed his father.

Linton was arrested that day on charges of aggravated assault and leaving the scene of an accident. Bail on those charges was set at $1,000 cash with a Maine Pretrial Services contract.

A separate affidavit by Donnell that had been filed in support of those charges said that while Kurt Linton was driving his mother’s vehicle, he “rear-ended a pickup truck, causing the airbags to go off in the vehicle, but Kurt continued to his residence.” At that point, Linton told police “he punched Malcolm defending himself.” Other information indicated Linton most recently had been drinking four 24-ounce beers.

Donnell wrote that Kurt Linton had been staying with his parents for most of the winter.

Linton generally stayed in a mobile home on their property, according to other documents, which indicated he had been disabled since 2012 and that he was divorced. Kurt Linton had remained at Two Bridges Regional Jail in Wiscasset, and state police upgraded his charges to include manslaughter Friday. When he made his first court appearance on the manslaughter charge Monday, a judge set bail at $50,000 cash with conditions prohibiting him from contact with his mother and his sister and her family.

Attorney David Paris was appointed to represent Linton. Linton’s next court hearings are set for early April.

Kurt Linton previously was convicted in Sagadahoc County on charges of criminal mischief and refusing to submit to arrest, as well as operating under the influence.

Malcolm Linton’s daughter, and Kurt’s sister, Kari Barrett, 55, answered the door Tuesday morning at her home next to her parents’ house on a quiet road off U.S. Route 201. She said she was advised by a victim’s advocate from the Maine Office of the Attorney General not to comment, but she did say her father was a talented and skilled craftsman who built and designed his own house almost 40 years ago and also her home eight years later.

She said her father was an industrial arts teacher at Gardiner Community Middle School. School Administrative District 11 Superintendent Patricia Hopkins said his job application from 1966 said he graduated with a degree in industrial arts from Gorham State College. He retired from the district in 1991 after a 25-year career.

Barrett said her mother has been having a hard time and wasn’t feeling well enough to talk to a reporter. A neighbor, Faith Schillinger, who was walking her two dogs Tuesday morning, said she’s been a neighbor of the Lintons for more than three decades and that Malcolm Linton “was a good neighbor” who was very well liked. She said she heard sirens Feb. 9 but declined to go into further details.

Malcolm Linton, also known as “Mac,” was born Sept. 6, 1940, and is survived by his wife of 58 years, Sharon Linton, according to his obituary posted Tuesday on the Plummer Funeral Home website.

“Mac was also a man of many talents,” the obituary reads. “He was also a very skilled musician. He played both piano and guitar by ear.”

He also loved sports and was a devoted Yankees fan, according to the obituary.

A service of remembrance will be held March 10 at Kennebec Community Church.

 

Jason Pafundi — 621-5663

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Twitter: @jasonpafundiKJ