RANGELEY, Maine — The Office of Adult Community Corrections (ACC) within the Maine Department of Corrections (MDOC) reported Friday morning that probationer Shawn Batchelder has not reported to his probation officer, as required.
Law enforcement authorities throughout Maine have been notified and are actively searching for him, including the Franklin County Sheriff's Department, Oxford County Sheriff's Department, Maine State Police, Maine Game Wardens, the Maine office of the U.S. Customs and Border Patrol, and the Maine office of the U.S. Marshals Service.
As of Wednesday, Sept. 23, they are continuing to search in the remote areas of Rangeley and Byron in Oxford and Franklin County on a rotating basis.
Batchelder was sentenced to the MDOC on May 22, 2012, with a 25-year sentence, all but 10 years suspended and 4 years probation, for class A gross sexual assault.
Batchelder was last seen in Augusta on September 12. Authorities involved in the preliminary investigation believe he is in a heavily wooded area near Rangeley or Byron.
Originally from Portland, Maine, Batchelder is 36 years old, 5’9, 250 lbs., brown hair and brown eyes, according to the MDOC.
They also believe Batchelder is with another man, Steven Petersen. Petersen is currently on bail for a charge of gross sexual assault in York County. Beyond that, the MDOC said it has limited knowledge of Petersen.
Warrants have been issued for the arrest of both men.
It is not typical for the MDOC to notify the public when an individual absconds from probation. However, the MDOC considers Mr. Batchelder a danger to himself and potentially others.
The public should not attempt to speak with these individuals.
MDOC and partners will reexamine the investigation parameters later this week, including consideration of limiting man power used in the physical search, if leads dwindle.
Any information about their whereabouts or sightings should be reported to local law enforcement or emailed to Doc.Wanted@Maine.Gov.