BANGOR, Maine — The brutal murder of a young Bangor woman 21 years ago has recently been reviewed by a team of Maine investigators, and a lead prosecutor confirmed last week that there is “renewed interest in the case.”
Meanwhile, a Web site has been established that is a tribute to her life and also seeks help from anyone who may have information on the unsolved homicide.
Alice Ann Hawkes, 23, grew up on Cedar Street in Bangor and graduated in 1982 from Bangor High School. She was found dead in her Westbrook apartment in October 1987. Her throat had been slit, according to her death certificate.
Investigators, prosecutors and forensic experts meet periodically to review specific cold case files, and in January they focused on Hawkes’ homicide. Recently, Deputy Attorney General Bill Stokes said that there was definitely renewed interest and that the lead detective had been given specific instructions on how to proceed with the investigation.
While he would not provide specifics about the investigation, Stokes said he believed the case was “very solvable.”
After high school Hawkes went to the University of Southern Maine and at the time of her death was working at the former Maine Savings Bank in Portland. She shared the Westbrook apartment with her boyfriend Stephen Bouchard whom she had met five years earlier at the family’s camp on Pushaw Lake, according to authorities.
On a quiet Sunday morning, Bouchard and Hawkes’ landlord, Robert Margiloff, discovered her blood-covered body inside the locked apartment.
Bouchard told police he played golf on Saturday afternoon and returned later in the day to find the apartment locked and Hawkes’ car in the parking lot. Bouchard said he was unable to get into the apartment because the deadbolt was in place. He said he did not have a key to it.
Bouchard went to a friend’s house to spend the night and then on Sunday morning returned to the apartment. When he still could not get in, he contacted Margiloff who met him there and let him in.
The two men found Hawkes’ body on the bathroom floor.
There was no sign of forced entry, and investigators have long said they believe Hawkes’ killer came and went through the door of the second-floor apartment. Therefore the deadbolt would had to have been locked from the outside using a key.
Bouchard broke off contact with the Hawkes family just days after Alice died, according to family members. He hired an attorney and other than initial interviews with police had refused to cooperate with the investigation, according to reports published in 1994.
Bouchard could not be located for comment on this story, and Stokes did not say whether Bouchard had been contacted recently by investigators.
Last week Mark Swett, an independent researcher from Westbrook, established a Web site dedicated to Hawkes’ life and her murder.
Swett said he had been interested in the case since it occurred and had spent the past year conducting interviews, gathering and taking photographs and combing through documents to put on the Web site.
Hawkes’ sister, Rosemary Driggers of Bangor, said Swett was a blessing and that he had worked closely with the family in establishing the Web site.
“We are blessed he came into our lives,” she said. “He did this completely with our blessing and he did so very responsibly and with respect to the investigation.”
Hawkes’ mother, Frances Hawkes, is now 88 years old and it remains “extremely important to her that Alice’s killer be caught and punished,” said Driggers.
The Web site may be viewed at www.alicehawkes.com.