SKOWHEGAN — A body found Sunday night in Skowhegan was that of a man in his 40s who had called 911 earlier to report he was an organ donor before killing himself, police said Monday.

The incident does not appear to be suspicious and is believed to be a suicide, Police Chief David Bucknam said.

The man’s body was found near the corner of Back Road and Glenview Road, south of the downtown area, at about 6:51 p.m.

Bucknam said it appeared that the man, who police did not identify, had planned to commit suicide.

“He did call 911 and stated that there was going to be a body at the intersection of Back Road and Glenview,” Bucknam said by phone Monday.

“When the 911 operator tried to get more information, he said, ‘Just tell them that they need to hurry up because I’m an organ donor,'” Bucknam said. “At that point the phone got shut off.”

Bucknam said the lead officer on the case, Jacob Boudreau, found in his investigation that the suicide appeared to have been planned.

“The individual was building himself up to the suicide itself,” the chief said. “As the investigation continued, it would appear the male subject had been building to this moment from text messages, emails and downloads found on his cellular device.”

Boudreau arrived and found the man still breathing, but suffering from a gunshot wound. The man was found on the ground next to a speed limit sign on Glenview Road.

Boudreau attempted to perform first aid on the man, “but he succumbed to his wound and passed away a few minutes later,” Bucknam said.

A 9 mm handgun was found next to the man. A cell phone was recovered and a check with Somerset County Communications Center verified the earlier 911 call had come from that phone.

The man’s body was sent to the Office of Chief Medical Examiner in Augusta for an autopsy, where authorities will be checking for any previous medical issues, Bucknam said.

There were 689 deaths by suicide in Maine between 2011 and 2013, according to the Maine Suicide Prevention Program web site, an average of 229 suicides a year. Between 2011 and 2013, suicide was the first leading cause of death for Maine adolescents between the ages of 10 and 14, second among Maine residents between 15 and 34 years of age, and fourth among Maine residents between the ages of 35 and 54, according to the web site.

The Maine Suicide Prevention Program provides educational resources and training so that Maine residents can identify and address suicidal behavior when it occurs. Their training partner is NAMI Maine — the National Alliance on Mental Illness. Training programs are offered such as suicide awareness, suicide prevention gatekeeper training, protocol development training for schools, lifelines lessons, teacher training, support for families and support for lesbian, gay and bisexual youth.

A representative at NAMI Maine said by phone Monday that the agency could not comment on the case under its best practices protocol.

Doug Harlow — 612-2367

[email protected]


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