ROCKLAND — A judge scheduled a hearing for Wednesday, Oct. 12, to decide whether to change bail so that a man charged with breaking into an Appleton home in June could be released.

Spencer Roberti

A hearing was held Friday, Oct. 7, in the Knox County Court before Judge John Martin at the request of the defense lawyer for 30-year-old Spencer B. Roberti. Roberti is charged with Class A burglary that carries a potential prison sentence of 30 years as well as aggravated criminal trespass, criminal threatening with a dangerous weapon, and possession of a firearm by a prohibited person.

Roberti has been held in jail since his arrest in July. Bail was initially set at $25,000 cash but Judge Martin later reduced it to $10,000 cash with the requirement that he enter into a Maine Pre-Trial Services contract and that a forensic evaluation be done to determine his competency.

Defense attorney Lisa Whittier said she spoke with the person who did the evaluation and Roberti was found to be competent. Whittier said the only thing preventing him from being released is the decision by Maine Pre-Trial not to accept him.

Maine Pre-Trial official Amber Wotton said Roberti was found to be a very high risk and said he did not cooperate when he was being screened.

Whittier said if the Maine Trial requirement was eliminated, he could make the bail requirement, and an Appleton man has agreed to watch him while he is released. The man is a neighbor to the family that was terrorized. Roberti had been staying with the man recently before the June incident.

The man spoke at the Oct. 7 hearing and said he had not been aware of issues that Roberti had. But the man said now that he does he will watch him and that Roberti will get mental health counseling. The man also said, if necessary, he would bring Roberti with him to work at his shop in Rockland.

He also reminded the judge that the charges are only allegations.

Deputy District Attorney Christopher Fernald argued strenuously against such an arrangement. The prosecutor pointed out the neighboring family was fearful that Roberti would kill them.

Whittier told the judge that her client was, in effect, being held without bail and that violates the Constitution.

An affidavit filed in the Knox County court by the Knox County Sheriff’s Office after the incident, states a family was woken up by a noise in their home at about 3 a.m. June 15. The husband went downstairs and found a man sitting on the floor with a rifle next to him. The man told the homeowner he was not there to hurt him but he wanted to send a message to “you and your president.”

The husband went back upstairs, armed himself and sheltered his family until police arrived.

The suspect left before officers arrived but an investigation found the suspect opened the homeowner’s gun cabinet and loaded some of the weapons.

Personal belongings of the suspect were found outside including a folding straight razor, a notebook, and art supplies.

Sheriff’s officers interviewed neighbors and determined a man who fit the description of the suspect had been staying at a neighbor’s residence. That neighbor said he allowed the man to stay at his home when the man said he was homeless. The neighbor said he had purchased the man the art supplies.

Police found Roberti had been posting TikTok videos and one had been posted June 14 in which he said “I’ve chosen my side, have you? Time to prepare for war. Peace is not the solution. Destruction will come.”

An arrest warrant was obtained from the court on July 1 and police were able to locate him in the Portland area.

Judge Martin said at the Oct. 7 hearing that the allegations were concerning. The judge pointed out the suspect has no criminal record in Maine. He also said that bail decisions were made prior to Maine Pre-Trial Services.

Fernald pointed out that Roberti has criminal convictions in New York state that include assault.

The judge asked Maine Pre-Trial to try again with Roberti and report back for the Wednesday, Oct. 12 hearing.