Hancock County Sheriff’s Log: Deer Isle couple out $12,000 in vacation scam

ELLSWORTH — A Deer Isle couple have lost $12,000, which they were scammed out of over the past two years by con artists perpetrating a vacation scam, according to Hancock County Sheriff’s Deputy Dana Austin.

“Basically they would tell the couple they had won an all-inclusive trip to wherever they wanted to go,” Austin said. But, in order to take the trip, there was a “paper fee” that the couple needed to pay.

The callers had Jamaican accents. The couple sent all the money via wire transfers — from credit unions and banks.

“There’s not a lot we can do,” Austin said. The couple gave the deputy a list of about 50 different phone numbers the calls came from. A lot of the numbers aren’t in service anymore and many were prepaid cell phone numbers, Austin said.

Austin advised the couple to contact the Maine attorney general’s scam hotline.

“Obviously, they’re no longer going to be answering the phone,” Austin said, when those numbers come up on the caller identification.


Deputies are investigating a burglary at a seasonal Hancock residence that was reported Monday.

Also in Hancock, a door at a vacant residence had been forced open and the door damaged, Deputy Jeff McFarland reported. The damage was discovered Sunday.

Missing hives

McFarland is investigating a report of three missing bee hives from a property in Deer Isle.


A report of a motor vehicle crash on Airport Road in Stonington Friday led to arrest for the motorist. The caller who reported the crash advised the motorist was leaving the scene.

Deputy Eric McLaughlin said Alan Durkin, 30, of Stonington was arrested on charges of leaving the scene of a property damage accident and operating a motor vehicle while under the influence of an intoxicant.

Citizen assists

Austin was sent to Castine Friday to investigate an alleged fight involving two men. The deputy found a man with a head wound. However, the man did not want to cooperate with an investigation and declined an ambulance as well.

A Blue Hill woman called police Friday to report a man had been camping on her property and she wanted police to move him along.

McFarland found the man’s campsite, which was vacant, so he left a business card and a note to pack up his things and leave.

McLaughlin spoke with an Orland resident about a fake ad that someone has posted on Craigslist, an Internet swap and sale site.

Mental health issues

Austin was sent Friday to check on a woman threatening to jump off the Penobscot Narrows Bridge.

“The female was leaning over the guardrail when some good Samaritans wrestled her off the guardrail,” Austin said.

The deputy arrived shortly after and took the woman into custody. The woman was taken to Eastern Maine Medical Center for an evaluation.

Also on Friday, Austin spoke to a Deer Isle man who was having suicidal thoughts. The man agreed to go to a hospital with a family member.

McFarland and Deputy Rob Morang went to a Lamoine residence Sunday to check on a man threatening to harm himself. Deputies took the man into custody and to a hospital for an evaluation.

Agency assist

Austin assisted the Maine State Police with a domestic situation in Surry Sunday, which led to an arrest.


A pickup truck was damaged after it spun 180 degrees and went off the road before coming to rest in a group of trees on Route 1 in Hancock Monday.

John Guyton, 59, of Sullivan was driving a 2011 Dodge truck, Lt. Chris Thornton reported. There was no word on a damage estimate.


Two people were charged Monday after Deputy Travis Frost stopped to help a motorist.

Frost summoned Jeff Marks, 34, of New York on a charge of possession of a usable amount of marijuana. Frost arrested Beckton Brownlow, 20, of Blue Hill on a charge of violating conditions of his release.


Jennifer Osborn

Jennifer Osborn

Reporter and columnist at The Ellsworth American
News Reporter Jennifer Osborn covers news and features on the Blue Hill Peninsula and Deer Isle-Stonington. She welcomes tips and story ideas. She also writes the Gone Shopping column. Email Jennifer with your suggestions at [email protected] or call 667-2576.
Jennifer Osborn

Latest posts by Jennifer Osborn (see all)

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.