ALFRED — Bruce Akers pleaded not guilty Tuesday to a charge that he brutally murdered his neighbor with a machete and then covered the man’s body with deer carcasses on Akers’ property in rural Limington.

Akers was arraigned in the killing of Douglas Flint, 55, at a two-minute hearing in York County Superior Court. Akers’ attorney, Paul Aranson, said he would not seek bail immediately, but reserved the right to request a bail hearing in the future.

Akers is next due in court Nov. 18 for a status conference. Aranson said he hasn’t received all of the evidence against Akers from prosecutors and he doesn’t expect the murder case will go to trial until later next year.

Akers was arrested in June after police searched for Flint and then found his body on Akers’ land.

Police allege that Flint was killed by Akers after several run-ins between the two over three years.

Flint had been reported missing June 10 by his daughter and a brother, who were worried that he might be despondent over the 2014 death of his wife. But the two also told police that there was a history of disagreements between Akers and Flint, who bought a 4-acre tract next to Akers in 2013 and built a house on the lot the next year.


Police said they searched for Flint around his house and then went to the adjacent property, where they found Akers, now 58, in a camper. Akers had called the York County Sheriff’s Office the day before and told them that Flint had stolen a six-pack of beer and other items from him.

Sheriff’s deputies asked Akers if Flint was alive, and Akers told them he wasn’t. Then, when asked if he could take them to Flint, Akers said he could. Detectives obtained a search warrant for Akers’ property, where a search dog found Flint’s body, covered with rotting deer carcasses.

An autopsy revealed that Flint had been nearly decapitated and had extensive injuries to his head and neck from an attack with a machete.

Flint’s daughter, Amanda Flint, said the two neighbors had disagreements over Akers’ allegedly trespassing on Flint’s property, leaving pieces of scrap metal on Flint’s land and swimming in Flint’s pool, although Aranson said Tuesday that he hasn’t seen evidence that the two men didn’t get along.

During a brief news conference outside the Alfred courthouse Tuesday, Aranson several times referred to the case as “unusual” or “highly unusual.” Aranson said he and his co-counsel, Robert LaBrasseur, haven’t made any decisions on whether to seek a mental evaluation for Akers.

Akers has a criminal record dating back to 1980, with convictions for theft, disorderly conduct, assault and unlawful possession of fireworks, all misdemeanors.

Akers had owned 7 acres in Limington, including the lot that Flint bought in April 2013 after a foreclosure by a subsequent owner. Akers had split the land up after a divorce, keeping 3 acres for himself and selling the other 4 acres.


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