AUGUSTA — A Wayne man pleaded not guilty Monday to charges of manslaughter and aggravated drunken driving in a crash in which one man was killed and a second seriously injured.

Tyler J. Goucher, 22, was arraigned during a hearing at the Capital Judicial Center. Goucher was accompanied by his attorney, Darrick Banda, and about two dozen family members and friends sat with Goucher in court.

About a dozen other people — family and friends of the victims — sat on the opposite side of the courtroom, and both groups remained sitting while attorneys talked in chambers with the judge to set a schedule for the case.

Goucher was indicted on Sept. 22, 2017, on charges of manslaughter, aggravated assault and two counts of aggravated criminal operating under the influence, each citing the injuries to the two passengers. The manslaughter charge is a Class A offense carrying a maximum penalty of 30 years in prison.

The May 12, 2017, crash on North Road in Mount Vernon killed 19-year-old Ethan J. Russell of Wayne and injured 21-year-old Richard J. Hall Jr. of Mount Vernon.

Goucher remains free on bail with conditions that prohibit him from contact with Russell’s family and with Hall and his family, and from driving a motor vehicle.


When investigators reached the late night pickup truck crash on North Road, they found that all three occupants had been ejected. Police also reported finding an 18-pack of beer under the truck.

At the time, Goucher told police the three men had been drinking at a local restaurant and he “was the most sober” so he was the driver that night, according to an arrest warrant affidavit for Goucher, filed by Kennebec County Sheriff’s Office Deputy K. Scott Mills.

Mills described the crash scene, saying he saw “approximately 300 feet of skid marks on the North Road. The truck then went off the road on the opposite travel lane, rolled over, struck a tree and came to rest against a telephone pole.”

A dispositional court hearing for the case is set for Jan. 11, 2018.

Betty Adams — 621-5631

[email protected]

Twitter: @betadams

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