December 7, 2013

Biddeford armed robbery spree ends in suicide

Tyler Trottier, 27, shoots himself in the chest inside his downtown King Street apartment as police try to negotiate his surrender.

By David Hench
Staff Writer

(Continued from page 2)

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Police tried to negotiate with Tyler Trottier, 27, the suspect in a string of robberies, at 12 King St. in Biddeford.

Shawn Patrick Ouellette / Staff Photographer

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Biddeford Police Chief Roger Beaupre speaks with the media at the Biddeford Police Department on Friday.

Shawn Patrick Ouellette/Staff Photographer

Additional Photos Below

A negotiator told him to come down with his hands above his head, without his cellphone, which could be mistaken for a gun, Beaupre said. Trottier agreed, but then officers heard what sounded like a gunshot.

That was between 11 and 11:30 p.m. Trottier’s phone went unanswered after that. Police obtained a search warrant and entered the apartment about 1 a.m., finding Trottier dead of a bullet wound to the chest with a .40 caliber handgun beside him.


Beaupre said police do not know why Trottier robbed the businesses. He has no criminal record with the city and only a few driving citations, Beaupre said. There was no evidence of drug use in the apartment, he said.

He said that based on discussions with Trottier’s family, the young man may have been having some emotional difficulties, but he did not elaborate.

Trottier’s immediate family declined to comment.

Ann Harris, the family friend, said they are in shock like everyone else who knew Trottier as a typical Maine kid who liked snowmobiles and was well known through his paving and landscaping business.

“He was such a good kid,” she said outside Trottier’s apartment on Friday. “A good-natured kid, very well-mannered.” Harris was there to help Trottier’s family deal with issues associated with the building. His father owns the 21/2-story building and Trottier paid rent.

“I’ve known the family a long time. They’re just a good family, helpful, involved in the community.”

Harris said she did not recognize Trottier from the surveillance image or description distributed by police.

Harris never knew Trottier to have any substance abuse issues and said he stayed on top of finances, running his business very professionally. Harris is an insurance agent and handled Trottier’s policies. When she last saw him a month ago, he came to her office and he was cheerful and seemed well, she said.

“I honestly don’t think it was drug related,” she said. “He had a nice truck. He had nice things. He could have pawned things to get money.”

If he owed people money, “All he would have to do is call the family. They would have helped him. They’re that type of supportive family. Nobody would have left him hanging.”


According to records at Biddeford District Court, Trottier was charged with criminal speeding for going 70 in a 35 mph on a motorcycle in 2007, though he ended up paying a speeding ticket. Several years ago he was charged with possession of a small amount of marijuana and, in a separate case, failure to stop for an officer. But he has no criminal convictions on his record according to the State Bureau of Identification.

A dispute over a rental security deposit in March led a Saco woman to seek a protection from harassment order against Trottier.

In her request for the order, Susan Riley said Trottier had given her a $600 deposit to hold a cottage, but then postponed moving in for several months until she finally rented it to someone else. She said she offered to refund $300 but had lost rental income while she held it.

She said Trottier demanded the full deposit, became furious and “in a fit of rage began making threats to me that I would be sorry and called me every name in the book.” A judge rejected the woman’s request for a restraining order saying the behavior did not meet the definition of abuse.

While some shopkeepers and residents greeted the end of the robbery spree with relief, it has left a mark.

“Who knows what’s going to happen next,” said Emmanuel Ashon, worried that the next outbreak of violence might strike a public gathering or occur in a busy restaurant. He said he remains anxious and worries about his children going to school.

“Every mother or parent is scared. It is a relief, but what’s next?”

Beaupre said one of the robberies, at Family Dollar, does not appear to be connected to Trottier. Police are still investigating that one.

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Additional Photos

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Biddeford Police Chief Roger Beaupre speaks with the media at the Biddeford Police Department on Friday.

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Police located Tyler Trottier’s pickup after it was caught on surveillance video leaving the scene of a robbery Thursday.


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