The 20-year-old Casco man who was driving his mother’s car when it crashed and two of his friends died had been hosting a party to celebrate his move to a new home.

Investigators with the Cumberland County Sheriff’s Office say alcohol and speed contributed to the crash just after 1 a.m. Sunday on a short stretch of Route 11 where nine people have died in the past decade.

The driver, Nicholas Sparrow, was partially ejected from the car but survived. He was in fair condition Monday at Central Maine Medical Center in Lewiston.

Thomas St. Saviour, 29, of Hiram was wearing a seat belt and stayed in the 1993 Infiniti. Michael Daye, 14, of Baldwin was thrown from the car. Both were pronounced dead at the scene.

Despite the age difference, Daye and his 17-year-old brother were longtime friends of Sparrow’s, authorities said.

Sparrow had just moved into a mobile home on Rosewood Road and had seven friends visit, several of whom were younger than 21, said Chief Deputy Kevin Joyce at a news conference Monday.

Sparrow, St. Saviour and Daye decided to drive to the Big Apple in Naples to buy more alcohol, but St. Saviour was turned down because it was after 1 a.m., Joyce said.

The three were going back up Route 11 when they passed a sheriff’s deputy at the American Legion Post parking lot in Naples. Deputy Andrew Feeney heard the Infiniti before he saw it, he said, because the car’s headlights were off.

The car sped past, and Feeney turned on his cruiser’s emergency lights. The Infiniti’s headlights came on and it started to pull over, then sped away, said Joyce.

Feeney saw the taillights for a time, but the car pulled away from him even though he was going 80 mph in a 50-mph zone, Joyce said.

When Feeney reached Quaker Ridge Road in Casco, he reversed direction to see if the car had pulled into a driveway or tote road. He saw the car on its roof, crashed into a large pine tree. There were multiple skid marks and debris – including diapers and women’s clothing – scattered around the area.

The department’s policy allows deputies to chase suspects if they believe a felony has been committed or suspect drunken driving or driving to endanger, Joyce said.

The section of Route 11 where the crash occurred has been the scene of fatal crashes in the past.

The worst crash occurred just before 1 a.m. on Nov. 10, 2001. Five people in their 20s were killed when a car that was going 90 mph slammed into trees directly across the road from where Sunday night’s crash took place. The five had been drinking at two parties just before the crash.

“It’s not necessarily a dangerous road per se,” Joyce said. “Unfortunately, the danger is people traveling at a high rate of speed.”

Deputies are working with the Cumberland County District Attorney’s Office to determine what charges Sparrow should face. They have done a blood test, as required after all serious crashes, but the results won’t be known for weeks.

Sparrow’s license was suspended for a drunken-driving conviction, for which he served 48 hours in jail. Also, he was free on bail on a burglary charge, Joyce said.

In that case, deputies followed footprints from camp burglaries to where Sparrow was hiding in the woods.

 

Staff Writer David Hench can be contacted at 791-6327 or at: [email protected]