Three teenagers are free on bail this week after being arrested and charged with manslaughter last week in connection with the death of a Glenwood Avenue man on July 7.

Maine State Police Sgt. Walter Grzyb said Wade DePalma, 19, of Bridge Street; Nicholas Lavigne, 19, of Pierce Street and Alexander Layug, 18, of Massachusetts Avenue, Portland, were arrested on Friday.

The three men were charged after a state police investigation concluded that Douglas Wilcox, 34, died as the result of injuries received in a fight on July 3. Police have been investigating the case since Wilcox’s death on July 7.

Grzyb said Wilcox had a verbal altercation with DePalma, Lavigne and Layug at Brown and North streets on July 3. He said he was not sure of the relationship between the four men, but said he believed they might have been previously acquainted in some way. He declined to comment on the nature of the argument.

Later that day, Wilcox confronted the three men in front of a River Street residence. The fight moved down to Brown Street, in front of the Skybox tavern, where the assault took place. Grzyb said there was no connection between the tavern and the altercation.

The Westbrook Police handled the initial investigation of the fight. Capt. Tom Roth said there were witnesses present at the beginning of the second altercation between Wilcox and the three men charged in his assault. The witnesses were not in the area of Brown Street where the actual assault took place, Roth said.

Grzyb said the only people involved in the fight were Wilcox and the three men. Grzyb said Wilcox suffered severe head injuries as the result of blunt trauma during the fight.

Last month, Wilcox’s brother William Wilcox Jr., whom police have said was not at the scene of the incident, told the American Journal he believed his brother was struck and injured with objects used as weapons during the fight.

On Friday, Grzyb said that was not the case. “We don’t believe weapons were involved,” said Grzyb. “It would have been just hands and feet.”

Wilcox was initially taken to Maine Medical Center on July 3 to be treated for his injuries. At that time, the Westbrook police were investigating the case. Roth said Wilcox refused to make a statement to police regarding the fight.

“He refused to cooperate with the officers,” Roth said. “So there wasn’t much of an investigation done on the fight.”

Wilcox stayed in Maine Medical Center for only a short time before signing himself out of the hospital against his doctor’s wishes.

On July 6, Wilcox was discovered unconscious in the shower by family members. He was taken back to Maine Medical Center where he died early the next morning.

Because Wilcox’s death was ruled suspicious, the Maine State Police, which has jurisdiction over suspicious deaths, took over the investigation.

After police received the results of an autopsy that showed Wilcox died as the result of his injuries, the state police met with the Attorney General’s Office, and the case was brought before a Cumberland County grand jury on Aug. 2. Grzyb said the grand jury indicted DePalma, Lavigne and Layug on Aug. 3, and the arrest warrants for the three men were issued on Aug. 4.

All three men were in custody by early last Friday afternoon, said Grzyb. He declined to say exactly where all three were arrested, except to say all three cooperated with officers and were arrested without incident.

DePalma, Lavigne and Layug were taken to the Cumberland County Jail in Portland. All three men were released on $100,000 property or $10,000 cash bail on Aug. 5. Grzyb said police do not expect to make any other arrests in connection with this case.

Westbrook teens charged in beating deathWestbrook teens charged in beating deathWestbrook teens charged in beating deathMaine State Police Sgt. Walter Grzyb (left) and Westbrook Police Capt. Tom Roth (right) discuss the arrests of three teenagers in connection with the July 7 death of a Glenwood Avenue man at the State Police barracks in Gray on Friday.


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