Saturday, March 8, 2014
A convicted rapist who confessed last week to killing his former roommate, another sex offender, and then killed himself was under investigation because of an allegation that he sexually assaulted a young girl late last year.
Bruce King, 59, also known as Bruce Neal, was scheduled to meet with a detective on March 11 to discuss the allegation. That day, he killed himself in a U-Haul truck that police pulled over on Interstate 95 near Lincoln.
Maine State Police spokesman Stephen McCausland said Thursday that King was first interviewed by police in January about the sexual assault allegation. He told investigators that it was his former roommate, Lawrence Lewis, 68, who assaulted the girl. The allegation was never substantiated.
Lewis's body was found in his run-down home on Route 2 in Molunkus Township around the time King killed himself on the interstate after a four-hour standoff with police.
Before he took his own life, King told Penobscot County Sheriff's Deputy Patty McLaughlin that he had killed Lewis by forcing him to overdose on prescription medication, according to a police affidavit.
Medical examiners did an autopsy on Lewis last week but did not release the cause of his death because tests are still being done.
McCausland said last week, when the investigation into the men's deaths began, that the case would be drawn-out and complicated. Affidavits filed this week in Lincoln and Houlton district courts, coupled with new information from police, explain more about the bizarre series of events.
McCausland said police have been looking into other claims about King and Lewis. If any of those claims are substantiated, he said, the case could be further complicated. He would not elaborate on what those claims are.
The incident on March 11 started when police stopped a southbound U-Haul truck driven by a woman on I-95. Lynda Fogg, 43, of Mattawakeag – also known as Lynda Dube and Lynda Gordon – got out of the truck and told police that King, who was in the passenger seat, had been holding a gun on her.
An affidavit says Deputy McLaughlin talked to King by cellphone. During that conversation, King said he had killed Lewis, his former roommate, because Lewis was molesting children and nobody was doing anything about it.
The affidavit says a man identified as Mark Vieria told police that King told him he had found pictures and videos of Lewis engaged in sex acts with children. The affidavit does not say how Vieria knew King. McCausland said he doesn't know what their relationship was.
Lewis was convicted in 1992 of raping a 9-year-old boy. He served several years in prison but had not been suspected in any sex crimes since then, McCausland said. He said police have not found evidence supporting Vieira's account.
Among the items that police found in searches of Lewis's home and the U-Haul truck was a laptop computer, in the truck. The affidavit does not indicate whose computer it was, but McCausland said investigators will search it to determine whether it contains any evidence of sexual abuse.
King was convicted of rape and is listed as a registered sex offender in Massachusetts. Maine State Police did not have information about King's crime, but the Massachusetts Sex Offender Registry Board's website lists a Bruce King who was convicted of rape in Salem, Mass., in 1985.
He was registered as a Level 3 sex offender, someone who poses "a high risk to reoffend and ... the degree of dangerousness posed to the public is such that a substantial public safety interest is served by active community notification."
The Essex County District Attorney's Office in Massachusetts could not immediately provide details about King's conviction.
Police are still trying to figure out how long King was in Maine. "We think it's been a few years, and one assumption is that he came here to hide," McCausland said.
King was not on Maine's sex offender registry, even though he was required to notify Maine authorities within 24 hours when he moved here. He also was in violation of Massachusetts law, which requires sex offenders to verify their residency in person at least once a year.
Police say King had been living with Lewis since last year. Fogg moved into the house recently. King and Fogg got married on March 1.
A police affidavit indicates that Lewis asked the couple to leave at some point. They stayed at two motels in the area in the days before the men died.
Police got a missing-person complaint from Lewis's son, David Lewis, on the day Lewis's body was found. The younger Lewis had last spoken to his father on March 7, and during that conversation, the father said he was worried that "a hit" had been placed on him because he was a sex offender.
David Lewis tried calling his father for several days, without success, then went to the house to look for him. The son didn't find his father inside but did find two dogs. When he came back two days later, the dogs were gone, the affidavit says.
During that time, King and Fogg were staying at the River's Edge Motel in Medway. Employees there have said the couple acted strangely during their stay and insisted on absolute privacy.
The couple also spent one night at the Gateway Inn in Medway. Employees there said King and Fogg had two dogs.
King and Fogg left the Gateway Inn on that Monday, March 11, as police were starting to investigate Lewis's disappearance.
An affidavit indicates that police showed up at the motel around the time the couple were leaving. Fogg told police that when King saw a police car he "started to freak out." She said he held a gun to her head and told her to drive or he would kill her.
Fogg also told police that King had said in the past that he planned to kill Lewis. She said she knew King was a sex offender but had not registered in Maine.
King and Lewis had criminal histories dating back decades. It does not appear that they ever were incarcerated in Maine at the same time, and it's not known how they met.
According to available records, Lewis served time from July 1997 to October 2002, and King was in prison from April 2003 to September 2006, said Scott Fish, spokesman for the Department of Corrections.
Eric Russell can be contacted at 791-6344 or at: