VINALHAVEN — Family members of a island man who died earlier this year are asking the attorney general to reopen the investigation.
“I don’t think there was enough investigation done,” said Ivy LaChapelle, whose 28-year-old son, Roger Feltis, died on June 14 after confronting Dorian and Briannah Ames at their home.
She added, “I think the people on Vinalhaven — they’ve been dealing with this for a while. It wasn’t only my son, there has been multiple times when there have been inadequate police protection out there.”
Friends who witnessed the confrontation and family of Feltis met with their state representative on Sunday.
“We drafted a very short petition … asking them to conduct a new investigation and bring forward any appropriate charges against the two people who resulted in Roger’s homicide,” said Rep. Evangelos, I-Friendship.
“The attorney general has written me back and said that he is going to be arranging a meeting so we can be heard,” he said.
The petition was sent to Attorney General Aaron Frey, District Attorney Natasha Irving, Knox County Sheriff Tim Carroll and the Maine State Police. The petition is also online under Change.org.
The case was presented to the Knox County grand jury who decided not to prosecute.
Vinalhaven residents voted two weeks ago not to renew the $121,000 contract with Know County Sheriff’s Office, sending a message about the island’s police coverage.
Law enforcement told family members that Feltis was stabbed but eyewitnesses said he was killed with a hatchet.
“Things don’t seem to add up,” Evangelos said.
LaChapelle agreed after hearing what eyewitnesses said during the meeting on Sunday. They said her son was unarmed when he arrived at the Ames’ home.
“He went up to the doorstep and he called Dorian and Briannah out,” she said. “Briannah came out first, out on the porch and they were yelling back and forth. And then she ended up punching Roger in the face and then they were scuffling and Dorian was standing there with an ax.”
“While he was scuffling with Briannah, Dorian swung the ax at Roger a couple of times,” his mother said. “That was really hard to hear.”
The Ames have since moved off the island and are now living in Rockland, she said.
The Change.org petition to restart the investigation had nearly 600 signatures Tuesday morning and had reached more than 1,000 that afternoon.
“I don’t think one of us, by ourselves, our voice is going to loud enough to be heard but all of us together, it’s hard for people to ignore us,” LaChapelle said.
“Justice for Roger” bracelets with the hashtag “We don’t give up around here” are circulating, and there is also a GoFundMe page set up to raise funds for Feltis’ daughter.
“It’s given us a little hope that maybe all of this, we might see light at the end of the tunnel,” LaChapelle said.
A group of Feltis’ friends and family are scheduled to march 8:30 a.m. Thursday in front of the Knox County Courthouse in support of a new investigation.
The meeting with the attorney general is expected to happen in the coming weeks, Evangelos said.