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James P. Moore, author of Human Sacrifice to speak in UMFK Nadeau Hall teleconference room October 2 at 6:30 p.m.

September 26, 2003


The author of a book that takes a critical look at the arrest, trial and conviction of Madawaska native Dennis Dechaine for the 1988 death of a 12-year-old Bowdoin girl, will hold a public presentation and book signing on Thursday, October 2, at 6:30 p.m. in the teleconference room of Nadeau Hall on the University of Maine at Fort Kent campus.

James P. Moore, whose book Human Sacrifice was published by Blackberry Books in 2002, will be the guest of UMFK's four-year rural public safety administration program and two-year criminal justice program.

A 1952 Fort Kent Community High School graduate, Moore is looking forward to returning to the St. John Valley to speak about his research and writing of the critically acclaimed publication, which challenges many of the conclusions drawn by law enforcement officers in the court case which led to Dechaine's conviction in 1988 for the murder of 12-year-old Sarah Cherry.

In Human Sacrifice, the author, a retired law enforcement officer of 25 years, who served as the Maine/New Hampshire agent in charge of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms division of the U.S. Treasury, challenges numerous assertions made by police and explores injustices within the justice system surrounding the case against Dechaine.

"Freedom and rights, especially those protected by our Constitution are precious to every citizen whether here in the St. John Valley, in the State of Maine or anywhere in this great United States. I strongly suggest that all of the UMFK student body, especially those in the rural public safety administration and criminal justice programs make a point to attend this presentation by Mr. Moore. I also believe that the community in general will greatly benefit from the presentation," said Allen Shoaff, assistant professor and program director of the public safety administration program.

Since its publication last year, Human Sacrifice has re-ignited the debate about Dennis Dechaine's guilt or innocence.

Dechaine, his lawyer, family, friends and supporters are currently awaiting DNA testing and results that will hopefully prove his innocence, and will begin a process that will end his 15-year incarceration.

Moore is expected to speak about the DNA testing, as well as the findings in his book with UMFK students and interested members of the public.

The author is a graduate of the University of Maine and a former elementary school student of the Model School, a building which is still part of the UMFK campus.

After serving with the U.S. Army in Korea and holding what he calls "dull jobs" he joined the ATF, where he spent a quarter of a century tracking gunmen and gunrunners, Klansmen and neo-Nazis, hired killers and Mafia assassins. During a two-year assignment with INTERPOL, he directed international investigations of robbery, rape and murder.

Ultimately, he retired in Portland as ATF's agent in charge for Maine and New Hampshire. Moore also got his private investigators license and began writing freelance for several periodicals, including Newsweek.

He is a past member of several professional law enforcement organizations and a current member of the Maine Writers and Publishers Alliance. His social organizations include the Sigma Nu Fraternity and Mensa.

The public is invited and encouraged to attend the presentation and book signing by Moore at UMFK on October 2.

The presentation will be followed by a question and answer session.