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Man accused of killing Christmas tree farm owner in Scarborough, Maine, appears in court after attacking officer

Quinton Hanna of Freeport, Maine, arrived for his arraignment in Cumberland County Superior Court on Thursday in Portland, Maine. Hanna has been accused in the fatal stabbing of James Pearson, an 82-year-old Christmas tree farm owner in Scarborough, Maine.
Quinton Hanna of Freeport, Maine, arrived for his arraignment in Cumberland County Superior Court on Thursday in Portland, Maine. Hanna has been accused in the fatal stabbing of James Pearson, an 82-year-old Christmas tree farm owner in Scarborough, Maine.Robert F. Bukaty/Associated Press

PORTLAND — The man accused of fatally stabbing an 82-year-old Christmas tree farm owner in Scarborough, Maine, appeared in court Thursday morning wearing a disheveled yellow jail uniform and handcuffs.

Quinton Hanna, 22, of Freeport, Maine, made his initial appearance at Cumberland County Superior Court shortly before 10:30 a.m. Thursday morning.

Hanna has not yet been indicted on the murder charge, so no plea was entered. He’s being held without bail at Cumberland County Jail. The state has requested a forensic evaluation to determine Hanna’s mental condition.

Cumberland County Sheriff Kevin Joyce said the hearing was delayed because Hanna assaulted a transport officer Thursday morning.

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Hanna is accused of attacking James Pearson in his front yard on Beech Ridge Road in Scarborough around 8:15 a.m. Sunday, according to Maine State Police.

The police report filed in court stated that Pearson’s daughter arrived at the house and found “blood all over the floor” and her father’s shirt saturated with blood. Pearson said someone had punched him, and “when she asked who, he indicated he didn’t know," the police report stated.

The police report also said Pearson “was clutching his chest and saying that he couldn’t breathe and that he wasn’t going to make it.“

Pearson was pronounced dead at Maine Medical Center in Portland, State Police said.

In addition, Hanna was charged with sexually assaulting a woman in West Bath on Sunday morning. The 42-year-old victim told police that she was jogging near her parents’ home when a silver Subaru pulled over in front of her, according to the police report.

The driver asked her whether she “could look under his car as he believed his bumper was dragging,” the police report stated, and the victim “found his request odd and walked away.” As she walked away, Hanna allegedly grabbed her by the arm and dragged her into the woods where he held a knife to her throat and sexually assaulted her. The victim told police she kicked Hanna and managed to run away.

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As she ran up the road toward her parents’ house, she said, she could hear the sound of an engine revving up as Hanna drove after her. Once the car was directly behind her, she ran into the woods and he drove into the woods after her, hitting her legs and knocking her to the ground. She tried to run but couldn’t stand up, so she screamed for help and a neighbor came to assist her, according to the police report.

The woman’s left tibia and fibula were shattered, the police report said.

Hanna was initially trapped inside his vehicle but was able to get out, and he fled into the woods when police arrived.

Soon after that incident, a 72-year-old woman on West Side Drive in West Bath reported that Hanna knocked on her door and said he needed help. Hanna reportedly entered the foyer of her home and pulled out a “boxcutter” and demanded that she get her car keys. When she froze, Hanna said, “Do you want to die?” and threatened to stab her if she didn’t get her car keys, according to the police report.

The woman’s husband then entered the foyer and pointed a loaded gun at Hanna, who promptly fled.

After that, police received a report that a black Ford Explorer had been stolen from Houghton Pond Road, which is within walking distance of West Side Drive. Police later stopped Hanna in the stolen vehicle in the town of Brunswick, according to the police report.

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Hanna is also being investigated in the stabbing of a man in Freeport the previous night, police said. The 69-year-old victim told police that a man showed up on his front porch and asked him whether someone in particular lived there, and when he replied no, the suspect stepped forward and stabbed him twice in the chest, according to the police report.

As of Thursday, no charges had been filed related to the Freeport attack and that incident remains under investigation, said Stephen McCausland, a spokesman for the Maine State Police.


Emily Sweeney can be reached at emily.sweeney@globe.com. Follow her on Twitter @emilysweeney. Deanna Pan can be reached at deanna.pan@globe.com. Follow her on Twitter @DDpan.