Joseph Eaton Maine man shares Facebook video day before Bowdwoin and I-295 shootings discussing previous trauma and asking for forgiveness. Had extensive criminal history and was forbidden from owning weapons.
A lone gunman has been arrested after allegedly killing four people in a home in Maine before shooting three others on a nearby interstate shortly afterward at a second crime scene. The shootings come a day after the suspect going on Facebook and sharing a video discussing previous traumas (see video below).
Joseph Eaton, 34, of Bowdoin, was taken into custody hours after he opened gunfire in Bowdoin, Maine, and 25 miles south on Interstate 295 in nearby Yarmouth on Tuesday morning.
Responding law enforcement arrived at the scene at 10:30am where they found four victims, before hearing reports of multiple people being shot in cars travelling along the highway around 25 miles from the first shootings.
State police have said that the three motorists who were shot have been hospitalized with gunshot wounds, and one remains in critical condition.
‘A person of interest has been detained, and the incidents are connected,’ Maine State Police Lt. Randall Keaten told reporters prior to the arrest.
It has not been revealed how Eaton was taken into custody. However, with officials saying they ‘quickly connected the shootings’, with Eaton now facing a series of murder charges and expected in court later this week. The man currently remains held at Two Bridges Regional Jail in Wiscasset, Maine, MassLive reported.
Authorities did not immediately identify the victims nor a motive for the shootings. Nevertheless online records indicated the address where the Bowdoin shootings taking place, 1459 Augusta Road being registered to a homeowner couple by the name of Robert Eger and his wife Patti DeRaps Eger.
A Wednesday night press conference confirmed Robert and Patricia Eger as the victims along with Eatons’s own parents as the other two fatalities, Cynthia Eaton, 62, and David Eaton, 66. The suspect’s parents were at the time staying with the Egers at their home.
The three people who were shot on I-295 in Yarmouth were identified as 51-year-old Sean Halsey and his children, 29-year-old Justin Halsey and 25-year-old Paige Halsey of Bowdoinham, police said. Paige remained hospitalized in critical condition, while Sean and Justin were expected to survive. Bowdoin said he believed the four vehicles he shot on the highway were police vehicles that were following him.
‘What good does it do to hate somebody?’
The connected shootings came a day after Joseph Eaton posting a video on Facebook in which he said he wished people would forgive him & indicated he was dealing with ‘Trauma’ (see immediately above).
In the Facebook video, Joey Eaton mentioned a woman’s name, with Eaton becoming emotional and revealing he had been molested according to heavy.com.
‘I’m probably going to get emotional just talking about it,’ an emotional Eaton begins. ‘But, my people, a lot of people looking at you and think, on well, it’s just another, you know, f*** up. Just another guy who, you know, can’t get his stuff right and treat people like sh**. You know, and then they turn around and claim to be Christian, and you can’t forgive somebody or understand what they go through, and you can’t give someone a second chance.’
‘Life as a whole is suffering!’ Bowdoin shooter long criminal rap sheet: released from jail 4 days prior https://t.co/6l4GwIMCr3 #Joseph Eaton #Joseph Eaton maine #Bowdoin shooting
— Scallywagandvagabond (@ScallywagNYC) April 19, 2023
Long criminal rap sheet: was released from jail 4 days prior to shootings
Continuing: ‘But you say you’re Christian; how does that make sense? Why can’t you just try to, try to take it slow, try to get to know the person again? What good does it do to hate somebody? You know, it destroys you. It’s not the way things were supposed to be done. It’s not the way we were made.’
‘Just need to try to forgive me for the things I did. I have been dealing with trauma for a long time on things I don’t talk to people about. Being molested and stuff. It destroys somebody. I know I’m good for my kids. I just wish people would forgive me, you know, some people. I don’t get it,’ he said.
Eaton did not make it clear what he had done that needed forgiveness, but in the caption, he wrote, ‘I’m scared to death about what people will say about this. It’s opened my story. Thanks for never giving up on me I love u.’
He wrote one day before the shootings, ‘Life as a whole is suffering. You work for the duration, you get sick, people you love die, and your guaranteed to have ‘bad days.’ You die and lose everything you spent your life obtaining. There is more to it than meets the eye. Life is a trial for what is to come.’
Four days before, he wrote, ‘It’s finally over. There are so many people I can’t wait to see. I’ll be back in Wichita soon.’
Of note Eaton had an extensive criminal background and was forbidden of owning weapons. Of disconcert, the gunman had been released from jail just four days before from Maine Correctional Center last Friday.
Suspect mother picked him up from jail on Friday before shooting her dead four days later
Reports Bangor Daily News: Eaton’s criminal record dates back to 2013. He has been charged with 15 different crimes before Tuesday’s shootings, according to a state police background check document. Those crimes include felonies that bar people from possessing guns under state and federal law.
He was just coming off an eight-month sentence in March 2022 after a felony assault conviction in Knox County. He has also been convicted of aggravated assault, simple assault and several probation violations.
The suspect left the Maine Correctional Center in Windham on Friday where he had served time for aggravated assault, where he was picked up by his mother, according to the state authorities. Four days later, Eaton would shoot dead his mother along with his father.
Interstate 295 was shut down for hours in the aftermath of the shootings before authorities opened it late on Tuesday afternoon. Investigators are expected to work through the night processing multiple scenes and interviewing witnesses.
The town of Yarmouth has a population of around 9,000 and is around 12 miles north of Maine’s largest city, Portland. Bowdoin is a small farming community with a population of around 3,000.