December 25, 2012

Alleged cop impersonator pleads not guilty to car theft

Steven F. Shaw Jr., 26, of Waterville, is also accused of forcing an Oakland man to withdraw money from an ATM

By Betty Adams badams@centralmaine.com
Staff Writer

AUGUSTA -- A Waterville man accused of pretending to be a police officer and forcing another man to withdraw money from an ATM made a court appearance Monday on a separate charge.

Steven F. Shaw Jr., 26, of Waterville, pleaded not guilty to a charge of unlawful use of property in which he allegedly used a vehicle without authorization.

Shaw is being held at the Kennebec County jail and entered his plea in Augusta District Court via video link Monday morning. He also faces charges in Cumberland and Somerset counties.

A vehicle belonging to an Oakland man was found by Maine State Police in Palmyra about 1 a.m. Nov. 13, according to a court affidavit by Oakland Police Officer Bryant LaVerdiere.

LaVerdiere contacted the vehicle owner who said he had lent his vehicle to Shaw at 10:30 p.m. Nov. 12 to go to the store, and had texted Shaw unsuccessfully telling him he wanted to get the car back.

The affidavit sought an arrest warrant for Shaw saying he was "on the run due to being a suspect in several burglaries in St. Albans and Palmyra" on the night the vehicle was stolen.

Separate published reports said Shaw is a suspect in several Somerset County burglaries that occurred shortly after 11 p.m. Nov. 12, including one of Kippy's Korner Store in Hartland where some $1,600 worth of items were stolen, including cigarettes, beer and candy. Break-ins also were reported at the St. Albans Town Office, an attempted break-in at Palmyra Variety Store. A car was found abandoned in a ditch on U.S. Route 2 near that store.

In Cumberland County, Shaw is accused of theft by extortion and impersonating a public servant for allegedly going to a Windham residence on Nov. 21, claiming to be a Cumberland County Sheriff's deputy, and threatening to arrest the occupant if he didn't give Shaw money.

The victim reportedly drove Shaw to an ATM in North Windham and withdrew money before dropping him off in Windham. Shaw was identified as a suspect with aid of security cameras and tips from the public, police said.

District Court Judge Robert E. Mullen set bail on the unauthorized use of property charge -- a misdemeanor charge -- at $2,000 cash with the condition that Shaw have no contact with the vehicle owner. Mullen also agreed to attorney Lisa Whittier's request to reserve a bail argument until Shaw gets an attorney. Shaw told the judge he intended to retain an attorney.

Shaw was arrested 3 a.m. Saturday at an apartment on Sarah Street, off Leighton Road in Augusta. Augusta Police indicated he had been hiding in an attic and officers had to talk him down.

Mullen also told Shaw that there were warrants charging him with $30 in unpaid fines from 2007 Waterville cases.

Published reports indicate Shaw was arrested in Waterville on Nov. 1 on charges of possession of a firearm by a felon and domestic violence terrorizing as well as on an unspecified warrant.

Betty Adams -- 621-5631
badams@centralmaine.com

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