LEWISTON — A Livermore woman charged with stealing a stranger’s Jeep with his three young children inside and crashing it into a house and a garage in Jay remained in Androscoggin County Jail on Wednesday.

Shannon Dupree Androscoggin County Jail photo

Shannon Lee Dupree, 42, of Butter Hill Road appeared Tuesday in Lewiston District Court on three counts of criminal restraint of a child under the age of 8, and one count each of unauthorized use of property and failure to stop for an officer. Her bail was set at $2,000.

According to a police affidavit, she “denied any recollection of taking the Jeep and the children” Saturday when it was parked outside Brettun’s Variety store and gas station on Route 4 in Livermore and driven about 15 miles before plowing into a house and a garage on a dead-end road.

According to an affidavit by Androscoggin County Deputy Michael Meija, Sgt. Tim Kachnovich responded to a report of a domestic disturbance Saturday morning at 96 Butter Hill Road in Livermore. One witness reported a man and a woman, identified later as Dupree, were fighting in the driveway.

Meija wrote that while he was responding to assist Kachnovich, he was flagged down by a panicked Thomas Burgess standing at the gas pumps at Brettun’s Variety. Burgess said he parked his 2010 Wrangler at the pumps while he went into the store, but when he returned, the Jeep and his children, ages 2, 4 and 6, were gone. He said a customer told him a woman got in it and drove away. Burgess also said there was a pistol in the vehicle.

Soon after alerting other law enforcement agencies, Meija wrote, Livermore Falls Police Department officer Walter Bachelder saw the Jeep entering that town on Route 4 and attempted to stop it but the driver kept going. He pursued it into Jay, where the driver stopped at the C.N. Brown gas station, got out, refused to obey Bachelder’s commands, got back in and continued driving north on Route 4.

Maine State Police put down spike mats on Route 4, puncturing the Jeep’s tires, but it continued to Greenridge Way and stopped at the last residence on the dead-end road. As officers approached, the driver accelerated the Jeep to maneuver between a house and a garage but hit both buildings, ending the pursuit. Dupree was pulled from the vehicle and resisted arrest as she was being put into a cruiser, according to the affidavit.

Burgess was brought to the scene and reunited with his children. There were no reported injuries, but there was substantial property damage, Meija said.

Meija said when he went to the jail to talk with Dupree she “did not offer any logical explanation about why she took the vehicle and the children, or why she failed to stop for law enforcement.” She acknowledged having a verbal dispute with her boyfriend that morning at Butter Hill Road in Livermore.

“She was able to recall the three children when I questioned her specifically about them, but she denied any recollection of taking the Jeep and the children inside it,” Meija wrote. “Based on my observations and interview, I felt Shannon was under the influence of a mind-altering substance.”

According to the affidavit, the Livermore Falls Police Department charged Dupree with eluding police, driving to endanger, three counts of endangering the welfare of a child, operating after license suspension and operating under the influence of drugs.

According to the complaint filed with the court, Dupree was convicted of burglary in December 2015 in Androscoggin County Superior Court and convicted of theft by unauthorized taking or transfer in December 2010 in Wiscasset District Court.

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