State and local police are investigating a cluster of vandalism and camp burglaries from this winter at Lake George in Skowhegan and Canaan, including buildings at Lake George Regional Park.

Interim Skowhegan police Chief Joel Cummings said that because the crimes happened in both towns, the state police were called in to assist.

“There were several burglaries this winter and some crossed over into Canaan, so that’s joint jurisdiction,” Cummings said Thursday.

Suspects have been identified and charges are pending, Trooper Reid Bond, of state police Troop C, said Thursday in an emailed response to an inquiry about the investigation. The camp break-ins occurred at several locations on Westshore and Whitmore Hill roads in Skowhegan, he wrote.

Derek Ellis, the regional park’s director, said one of the camps is owned by a state police investigator. He said buildings in the park were vandalized, leaving broken windows and other damage. He said the cost of repairing the damage could exceed $1,000.

“I’ve heard from camp owners around. There’s been a lot of it,” Ellis said by phone Thursday. “There are windows being broken, and I’ve had a fair amount of vandalism at the park, too. It seems like it happened toward the tail end of the winter, at least on my end.”

He said he received the first call about burglaries at the end of February and another as recently as last week. Ellis said burglars got into a building that houses the park staff during the summer. He said there was little in the park buildings to steal and that the damage was his primary concern.

“They’ve done all sorts of stuff — broken signs, a great big giant window; that’s $400 or $500 right there, plus the rest of the vandalism. I’m sure I haven’t seen everything yet, but it’s probably a thousand bucks worth of mess to pick up, at least,” Ellis said.

Cummings said the lead investigator in the burglaries is Trooper Blake Conrad from the Maine State Police. Conrad could not be reached Thursday for details of the investigation.

“We covered one break that was reported on Feb. 10,” Cummings said. “They received calls of other breaks in the following months. I’m told that only alcohol was taken from our break.”

Cummings said the Police Department posted an alert on “posts” on its Facebook page to draw the attention of camp owners who might have been affected by the vandalism and burglaries.

Reid said anyone who discovers unreported damage at a seasonal residence in the area is asked to call Detective Sgt. Don Avery, of the Skowhegan police, at 474-6908.

Doug Harlow — 612-2367

[email protected]


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