Target-shooting video, threats lead to Belfast woman's arrest

By Stephanie Grinnell | Feb 26, 2018
Source: YouTube A screengrab from a YouTube video posted by Laurie Allen shows her holding a rifle with a scope during target practice.

Belfast — Editor's Note: Story and video contain language that some readers might find offensive.

A woman well-known to police and city officials was arrested Feb. 23 and charged with terrorizing with a dangerous weapon, class C, after a city councilor discovered a YouTube video in which he was named.

Laurie Allen, 56, of Seaview Terrace has been vocally critical of city and county officials as well local police for several years. She maintains at least one blog outlining her issues with the city and law enforcement.

Her arrest came after she posted a series of videos to YouTube, in which she can be seen, along with a male companion she calls John, shooting at targets in a wooded area. At the end of one of the profanity-laced videos, as she picks up the camera, she ticks off each city councilor, the city manager and the city planner by name, adding "Thanks for being my targets, you a*******."

Police Chief Michael McFadden said police believe the video delivered a terrorizing message to all of the city councilors, the city manager and even some employees of the city of Belfast.

"We're very cognizant that people have the right to disagree with their government and they have to have the opportunity to voice that disagreement," McFadden said, adding police should not stand in the way of that. "It's not such a fine line between appropriate disagreement and action, and illegal activity."

Allen's bail was set at $25,000 cash. Additional charges could be filed because there were seven people named in the video, McFadden said.

In the past, Allen has claimed her property was damaged by water. In 2011, then-City Attorney William Kelley reviewed Allen's claims and found “the city of Belfast has no right, title, interest or obligation to maintain the stream/flood and drainage swale” on the property, and found no evidence that the city was ever deeded any easement to control the stream, according to a November 2014 Republican Journal story.

His 2011 report also stated that aerial photography evidence shows that the natural drainage system on Seaview Terrace properties has been in existence since at least 1939, with the stream flowing through the area before the subdivision was built, but approximately 35 to 40 feet south of where it runs today. Kelley wrote that the stream was moved by a private entity, not by the city, so houses could be built where the stream had been. The move did not violate any laws or codes when the houses were built, but it would today, City Manager Joseph Slocum said at the time.

Kelley's report continued: “In policy terms, it would be unlawful for the city to use public funds to improve private property, be that for erosion control or any other reason. That said, the city is obligated to maintain the drainage systems and culverts located within the rights of way, as well as those for which the city has obtained an easement over private property."

Allen has filed a number of lawsuits against the city and law enforcement over the years and is commonly seen with protest signs outside the county courthouse and City Hall. She  was arrested and charged with harassment in November 2017, according to The Republican Journal archives.

Reporter Ethan Andrews contributed to this report.


Comments (1)
Posted by: Morris L Slugg | Feb 27, 2018 12:57

Thank you Chief for doing what was right by all Belfastians.



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