Assessment continues for Scarborough teen accused of attempted murder

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SCARBOROUGH — A psychological evaluation of a teenager accused of trying to kill a classmate’s father is continuing, more than 2 1/2 months after the shooting that led to the boy’s arrest.

A court appearance for Matthew Gwyer, of 26 Ocean Ave., was scheduled for Friday, March 24. But it was delayed to May 5 to allow more time to complete the state-ordered evaluation, Daniel Warren, the attorney for Gwyer’s parents, Maura and Drew, said Wednesday.

Gwyer is being held at the Long Creek Youth Development Center in South Portland, where he has been since late January. He was 17 at the time of the shooting; his 18th birthday was March 26.

At his first court appearance Jan. 25, Gwyer denied the Class A felony charges brought against him, which include attempted murder, burglary and elevated aggravated assault.

Around 1:30 a.m. on Jan. 18, police received a call from Bruce Glidden’s home at 104 Ash Swamp Road to report that the 47-year-old had been shot in the torso while he slept on a couch in his home.

Also in the home with Glidden were his wife and two teenage children, both of whom, like Gwyer, are students at Scarborough High School. The Gliddens’ son is in Gwyer’s class.

When police arrived, nothing was reported stolen, but windows in a vehicle parked in the driveway had been smashed. 

Glidden was taken to Maine Medical Center in Portland, where he was treated for non life-threatening wounds and discharged two days later. 

Glidden, who owns Glidden Roofing Corp. at 15 Washington Ave., wouldn’t respond to further questions Wednesday morning, but did say that, “generally” his “recovery is going well.”

Police arrested Gwyer Jan. 22 after receiving an early morning call about a suspicious vehicle in the driveway of a home on Pleasant Hill Road. 

Officers found the gray Honda Ridgeline operating without tail lights on Black Point Road. Police searched the car, operated by Gwyer, and found a 9mm handgun, the same caliber weapon they believe was used to shoot Glidden.

Judge E. Mary Kelly the following Monday ordered Gwyer to undergo a psychological evaluation to help determine whether he should be tried as an adult. 

After that hearing, Assistant District Attorney Michelle McCulloch said, “It’s not uncommon for these types of evaluations to take a couple of months.”

The evaluation largely serves to help prosecutors decide whether to petition the judge to charge Gwyer as an adult for any or all of the three felony charges, but McCulloch said doing so would be “rare” under the circumstances. 

Gwyer could face up to 30 years in prison for each felony if he’s tried as an adult. If tried as a juvenile and found guilty, he could be held at Long Creek until he turns 21.

The hope is that the evaluation will be complete by mid or late April, Warren said Wednesday morning, so that all parties will have time to digest the report before the May court hearing. 

Warren said Gwyer is “holding up as well as a young man in a starkly different set of circumstances can hold up.”

“This is a horrific situation for everyone involved,” Warren said. “There are no winners here.”

Warren, who is Gwyer’s former coach and a longtime resident of Scarborough, said he has been “very impressed the last few months (by) how everyone is taking a very response, adult, mature response to this.”

Following Gwyer’s arrest and court hearing, Police Chief Robbie Moulton issued a Facebook post urging residents not to draw conclusions about the case that could polarize the community. His action followed speculation on social media that Gwyer had been bullied.

The town is no longer “dealing with the hysteria or name calling,” Warren said this week. “I think everyone is being reserved and dignified and waiting for the court system to work its way through things.”

Alex Acquisto can be reached at 781-3661 ext. 106 or aacquisto@theforecaster.net. Follow Alex on Twitter: @AcquistoA

Matthew Gwyer’s photo in the 2015 Scarborough High School yearbook. 

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South Portland and Scarborough reporter for The Forecaster. Graduate of Western Kentucky University and the Salt Institute for Documentary Studies. Alex can be reached at 781-3661 ext. 106.