DOVER-FOXCROFT, Maine — A Dover-Foxcroft person accused of assaulting a area working day care’s owner and an worker and fleeing with his two little ones was convicted of assault for the duration of a demo this 7 days, according to the Piscataquis County District Attorney’s Office environment.
The jury convicted Scott Harmon, 50, of two counts of assault, a Class D crime, just after deliberating a small much more than an hour, Assistant District Attorney R. Christopher Almy mentioned.
The jury trial, which was held just before Top-quality Court docket Justice William Anderson on Wednesday and Thursday, stemmed from the incident at Very little Organics Early Understanding Middle, a working day care in Dover-Foxcroft, far more than a 12 months back.
“I’m delighted with the result,” mentioned Ashley Cookson, who co-owns the working day treatment with her husband, Benjamin Cookson. “I’m discouraged that it is not a felony to drive your way into a working day care or a faculty.”
Cookson, who testified during the demo, called 911 from the day treatment at 7:50 a.m. on May well 25, 2021, to report that Harmon and two many others had barged inside and assaulted her and yet another personnel, according to details provided by the district attorney’s business office.
At the time, it was common for people today to knock on the day care’s door mainly because it shares a making with the Bureau of Motor Cars, Cookson claimed Friday.
Within the day care, Harmon reportedly pushed by way of Cookson, who fell backward into her youngest scholar who was ingesting breakfast, she mentioned. Cookson fought again and tried using to push him out of the setting up, according to the district attorney’s place of work. Harmon wrestled the other staff — who no longer functions at the working day care — due to the fact she was holding 1 of his sons, the workplace mentioned.
Harmon took his twin sons and, alongside with his two companions, drove away in a black GMC Acadia. Cookson did not know at the time that Harmon was the father of two of the day care’s learners, according to the place of work.
The incident still left Cookson with bruises on her neck and arm, and the staff experienced bruises on her neck and shoulders, she mentioned. Twelve learners witnessed the incident, and 1 was still left with a black eye, she reported.
A Dover-Foxcroft police officer afterwards located Harmon at his home and spoke to him with a law firm present. Harmon explained he went to the day care to see his sons simply because the boys’ mother experienced not permitted him to go to for some time, according to the district attorney’s place of work.
The incident lasted only quite a few minutes, but children at the day treatment ended up concerned and remaining traumatized, Cookson stated.
Her 5-12 months-outdated son asks at least once a 7 days when Harmon will return, she said. Cookson had to toilet-coach three of the kids once more — including just one of her very own — mainly because they regressed right after the incident. Another child nonetheless has nightmares, she stated.
“I have an audio recording, and it seems like an attack,” she claimed. “They [children] ended up all screaming at the top rated of their lungs. A pair of mom and dad were being in courtroom yesterday and heard it for the to start with time and had to stroll out.”
Soon right after the incident, Cookson had a baby psychologist appear in to assist learners cope with any trauma they may well have expert, she reported.
Cookson now has a sign on the day care’s door that tells folks not to knock. Rather, they really should use the doorbell, call the facility or talk by the window in close proximity to the door, she mentioned. The day treatment also has online video surveillance in the front and back again of the creating.
Erik T. Crocker, Harmon’s lawyer, declined to remark Friday. Harmon’s sentencing is scheduled for 1 p.m. Sept. 26.