WATERVILLE — One man is in the hospital with serious stab wounds and another man is injured and in jail following what police described as a drug deal gone bad Tuesday on Silver Street.

Police Chief Joseph Massey said Kevin Coutu, 25, of 8 Gold St., Apartment 1, was arrested Wednesday night and charged with class A elevated aggravated assault, class B robbery and class E violation of conditional release and taken to the Kennebec County jail in Augusta, where he was being held without bail. Ashlyn Laliberte, 20, of 5 Silver Place, Apartment 3, was arrested after the incident on a warrant for a liquor violation and was issued a citation for possession and consumption of alcohol by a minor, and she also was taken to the jail.

Massey said Coutu was purporting to buy marijuana from a man driving an older sport utility vehicle Tuesday night on Silver Street, but he actually planned to steal the marijuana.

Coutu allegedly used a knife to stab the SUV driver in the upper torso, causing serious wounds; and while the driver was trying to leave, the SUV either dragged or ran over Coutu, or both, causing severe bruises on Coutu’s arms, legs and hands, Massey said.

The SUV driver drove to MaineGeneral Medical Center’s Thayer Center for Health and later was transferred to MaineGeneral’s Alfond Center for Health in Augusta. As of Thursday afternoon, police had been unable to talk with him because of his condition, Massey said.

Police started working on the case around 10:25 p.m. Tuesday when they got a call from someone on Silver Street who said she was looking out her window and could see someone being dragged near 53 Silver St., Massey said. Another person called about the same time and said she could hear a group of people talking outside and someone had been hit by a car, he said.

Police Officer Ryan Dinsmore went to the scene and saw nothing unusual, but then a woman from Silver Place hollered out to him, Massey said. Dinsmore asked her if she had seen anything unusual such as a person being struck by a car, and she responded that she thought she had heard a noise in back of the apartment building.

Dinsmore, who was skeptical about her response, asked her name and she gave the name Emily Laliberte, which he suspected was not her real name, according to Massey. Officer Scott Dumas arrived and confirmed she was Ashlyn Laliberte and said he knew her and had dealt with her before. They checked to see if there were any active warrants for her arrest and found one, so they arrested her and placed her in a police cruiser, Massey said.

Dinsmore continued to check the area and heard voices and noises coming from the second floor at 5 Silver Place, off Silver Street, so he knocked on the door. A young woman answered and he asked if she had seen anything unusual out on the street earlier, Massey said.

“She immediately starts to tell him, yes, her and other people tried to buy weed from a person and the person ran over another person who was with her and that person who was run over was currently in the shower of the house. Within a few minutes the individual came out, Kevin Coutu, and he had severe abrasions on his legs, arms and hands,” Massey said.

Massey said Coutu was uncooperative with police officers but admitted he tried to buy marijuana and someone took off in a vehicle and the vehicle hit him. Coutu did not want medical help and would not give police any information about the person who hit him, Massey said.

Meanwhile, police Sgt. Jason Longley got a call from police Detective Duane Cloutier, who told him he had just received a call from someone who reported a “drug ripoff” had occurred and the a driver had been stabbed and was heading to the hospital, Massey said. Police immediately recognized the report as being linked to the one they were investigating.

An officer went to the hospital and the driver was there being treated. Police re-interviewed Laliberte, and once she realized police had more information about the case, she started to talk, according to Massey.

“She said, in fact, that her and a couple of other females and Kevin Coutu made arrangements to buy weed on Silver Place from the driver and Coutu stabbed him in the upper torso,” he said.

Cloutier and Detective Dave Caron took the case, interviewed all the people involved, including Laliberte, and worked on the case around the clock, Massey said. They got a warrant late Wednesday afternoon and arrested Coutu around 9:45 p.m. They also secured the SUV at the hospital, got a search warrant for it and found a knife inside that is being analyzed, as well as a small amount of crack cocaine, Massey said.

Coutu is scheduled to appear March 13 in Kennebec County Superior Court in Augusta, and Laliberte is scheduled to appear Feb. 22 in Waterville District Court, Massey said. She was unable to post $300 cash bail, he said.

Amy Calder — 861-9247

[email protected]

Twitter: @AmyCalder17

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