ANSON — A man was detained by authorities Monday afternoon after repeatedly discharging a firearm inside an Anson home, police said.

Deputy Mike Mitchell of the Somerset County Sheriff’s Office said that Paul Caplin, 44, of Anson, was arrested at 3 p.m. after a standoff with police that lasted about two hours. He will be charged with reckless conduct with a dangerous weapon and creating a police standoff, Mitchell said.

According to the Somerset County’s sheriff’s log, authorities first received a complaint shortly after 1 p.m. of a man who discharged a firearm and then jumped out of the second-floor window of his residence at 6 Union St. in his underwear.

Deputies were called to check on the man’s well being, Mitchell said, but the situation escalated once they arrived and Caplin discharged the weapon again.

Mitchell said Caplin was firing the weapon “indiscriminately” and at deputies, so they took cover and called for backup. Maine State Police, Skowhegan Police, Fairfield Police and Game Wardens were among the many agencies drawn to the scene, Mitchell said.

Several roads in the area were closed during the standoff, but they were reopened by 3:30 p.m. Mitchell said some nearby residents in the village of North Anson were asked to shelter in place.


“At the time (the suspect) was saying there was a lot of people in the house,” Mitchell said. “We were cautious about creating a situation where somebody might get hurt.”

Mitchell said the police, treating the incident as potentially involving hostages, kept talking with the suspect in an effort to get him to voluntarily give up himself and his weapon. Caplin fired at least 10 rounds during that time from inside the house, he said.

After a nearly two hours, authorities were able to talk the suspect into surrendering, Mitchell said.

Police saw that Caplin had an ankle injury sustained when he jumped from the window and decided to first send him to Redington-Fairview General Hospital in Skowhegan to get checked out before going to the county jail. Mitchell confirmed he broke his ankle.

After speaking with some of the suspect’s family and friends, Mitchell said he suspects the incident to be mental health related. Though the suspect was “coherent” when speaking to police and understood instructions, Mitchell said a family member told him the suspect may have been taking medications he was not prescribed.

Police took possession of several rifles, shotguns, handguns and crossbows they found inside Caplin’s Union Street residence, Mitchell said.

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