2017-09-01 / Community News

Five-year-old gunshot victim dies after accidental shooting

By Michael Kelley Staff Writer

Scarborough Police Chief Robbie Moulton is encouraging the community to come together in the aftermath of a shooting earlier Monday night in which a 5-year-old girl was fatally shot at a home on Milliken Road.

“Our community suffered a tragedy last night,” he wrote in an Aug. 29 statement on the town’s Facebook page. “While there is speculation swirling, I wanted to let you know that there is no danger to our community. We will continue to work with and support the Maine State Police as this investigation continues and the circumstances are fully explored. There is an extended family in our community who woke up this morning felling the loss of their little girl. Their lives will be changed forever. There are police officers, firefighters, EMTs and dispatchers who tried their hardest in vain last night and woke up this morning wanting to hug their children and families tight an not let go. I ask that you keep all of these people in your hearts over the next few days as they begin to heal.”

Too often, he said, tragedies like the one Monday night in Scarborough, pit a community against each other instead of bringing it closer together.

“While we will have differences of opinions, my hope is that we will not follow the path that so many have on a state and national level. Let us instead set an example and show those in Augusta and Washington how a community comes together when times are tough, despite any differences that we may have,” he wrote. “In that same light, I could not be more proud of our public safety family who have come together and been there for each other throughout the night and day. Again, I would ask that you keep this family and our public safety family in your hearts.”

According to Steve McCausland, spokesman for the Maine Department of Public Safety, Elise Dorr, 5, of Belfast died at Maine Medical Center in Portland Monday night after accidentally shooting herself in the head while at her grandparent’s residence on Milliken Road.

McCausland said Scarborough police were called to the home around 7:30 p.m. and that Dorr, her parents Todd and Virginia Dorr and her two older siblings were “staying at the house while the grandparents were away," Both parents were home at the time.

"State Police said the .45 caliber handgun was owned by the girl's father, Todd Dorr, and was in a backpack located in the bedroom where father and daughter were located. Todd told detectives he went to adjust the TV and heard the gunshot as he moved across the room.   Detectives said the girl retrieved the gun from the backpack, and was on the bed when the gun went off. The gun was not in a holster and there was no gunlock," McCausland wrote in an email to the Leader. "State Police said this is a tragic reminder of how quick and unpredictable children can be around a loaded firearm and gun owners need to make sure guns are secured and out of reach when children are present. No charges have been filed, but State Police will have prosecutors review their investigative report once it is completed."

Staff Writer Michael Kelley can be reached at news@scarboroughleader.com.

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