NEWPORT — A man who was fatally shot Friday afternoon by a deputy from the Penobscot County Sheriff’s Office had been staying with his family at the campground where he was killed, according to the campground’s owner.

Stephen Bossom, 35, had been working part time this summer at Sebasticook Lake Campground in Newport, along with his wife, Abbie.

Sharon Sheehan, who owns the campground with Dan Wilbur, said Sunday she and Wilbur were still trying to understand the events that transpired Friday and culminated in Bossom’s death.

“I’m just trying to get through this. It’s been busy here,” Sheehan said. “(The family) will be picking up stuff to take out, but there are memories here. His wife was working here (in the office), and now it’s just me.”

Sheehan spent Sunday keeping up with the demands of running a campground and declined to discuss the specifics of the shooting or say much about Bossom’s work there.

A joint statement released late Friday by the Newport Police Department and Penobscot County Sheriff’s Office said Deputy Kenneth York was the first to arrive at the scene following an emergency call about a social media post saying a person armed with a weapon was seen at the campground.


York was confronted by Bossom, who was armed, and York shot him, according to the statement.

The statement did not explain what Bossom had done that prompted York to use deadly force.

There was no police presence or any indication of the incident at the campground Sunday. All 68 sites at the campground were booked, Sheehan said.

Sheehan had told the Bangor Daily News that Stephen and Abbie Bossom began working at the campground in May in exchange for a free campsite. The couple have a young child.

Bossom reportedly notified Sheehan of the social media post and told her to call the police, Sheehan said, adding she initially thought it might have been posted by a disgruntled former employee. She told the newspaper she never saw the post.

Sheehan said Bossom “truly believed he was protecting everybody in the campground” because “he believed we were all in danger.”


Sheehan said she heard Bossom ask responding officers for their identification and also heard officers repeatedly order Bossom to drop his weapon. She then heard four shots, the newspaper reported. It appeared Bossom did not believe the police and sheriff’s deputies who had responded were law enforcement officers, she said.

Bossom’s wife and child reportedly left the campground over the weekend, and Sheehan said Sunday someone was expected to arrive in the coming days to retrieve their belongings.

Friday’s incident drew a heavy police response to the campground, with roads to the property closed during the investigation. Dexter police and the Maine State Police also responded to the campground.

York has been placed on administrative leave as the investigation continues, according to officials. The Office of the Maine Attorney General is investigating the incident, which is customary in cases where police have used deadly force.

York has been employed by the Penobscot County Sheriff’s Office since 2017 after graduating from the Maine Criminal Justice Academy in Vassaboro, according to the Sun Journal in Lewiston.

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