A Cushing, Maine, lobsterman charged with manslaughter in the death of two crewmen has been arrested again after reportedly overdosing on heroin.
Christopher A. Hutchinson was arrested on Thursday, March 23, by the Maine Marine Patrol after a warrant for his arrest was issued by a U.S district judge on Wednesday.
On March 13, Waldoboro emergency medical services and the Knox County Sheriffs Office responded to an unresponsive man at a residence in Friendship. When medical personnel arrived, Hutchinson was unresponsive and not breathing but had a faint pulse. Hutchinson regained consciousness after officials administered two doses of Narcan, according to the U.S. Attorney’s Office in Portland.
The sheriff’s office notified Hutchinson’s probation officer, and he was forced to submit to a drug test that showed morphine and oxycodone in his system. He initially denied taking any drugs, saying someone must have spiked his drink at the residence, but later admitted to heroin use, according to the probation officer’s statement filed in court.
Hutchinson is scheduled to go on trial later this year on two counts of seaman’s manslaughter for the deaths of Tomas Hammond, 26, and Tyler Sawyer, 15, who were lost at sea when Hutchinson’s lobster boat No Limits capsized and sank in heavy seas on Nov. 1, 2014.
Hutchinson initially told officials that a heavy storm caused the at-sea incident, but later tests showed that there were traces of Oxycodone and marijuana in his blood.
Hutchinson was arrested Dec. 19 on manslaughter charges, but was released three days later on $10,000 unsecured bail under conditions that prohibited him from using or possessing illegal narcotics.
Hutchinson’s previous attorneys have withdrawn from the case. The trial was set to start on June 5, but his new attorney is asking for it to be delayed to allow him more time to review the case.