John De St. Croix, 25, makes his first appearance in court at the Penobscot Judicial Center in Bangor on April 2. He appeared with defense attorney David Bate, of Bangor. Credit: Callie Ferguson

The man accused of killing two local homeless people who were found in a burned delivery truck last week was ordered Monday to be held without bail.

John De St. Croix, 25, appeared in at the Penobscot County Judicial Center before Justice Ann Murray. Wearing a long-sleeve shirt and sweatpants, he appeared to be limping as he entered and exited the courtroom, where he was formally charged with two counts of murder. He was not asked to enter a plea.

Bangor police detectives arrested De St. Croix on March 30 after interviewing him at the police station, two days after the bodies of Michael Bridges, 43, and Desiree York, 36, were found in a flaming box truck in the parking lot of Penobscot Plaza. He was charged with two counts and murder and taken to the Penobscot County Jail and held without bail.

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It is unclear how well De St. Croix, who was homeless, knew his alleged victims, who were also homeless and in an on-again, off-again relationship, according to friends and family. De St. Croix went by the nickname “Baby Jesus,” according to a friend of the victims.

Murray approved Assistant Attorney General John Alsop’s motion to seal the two police affidavits in De St. Croix’s case, on the basis that a grand jury is set to review the charges and the end of the month and the killings are still under investigation.

Defense Attorney David Bate of Bangor declined to comment on his client’s background or motives.

“I don’t really know a lot, and even the stuff I do know about I can’t discuss,” he said.

The slayings are the second and third homicides in Bangor this year, after Israel Lewis, 51, was found dead of two gunshot wounds in his Second Street apartment in January. F “Frank” Daly, 29, was indicted in February on one count of murder in connection to the shooting.

A date has not been set for De St. Croix’s next court appearance. If convicted, he faces 25 years to life in prison for each count of murder.

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Callie Ferguson

Callie Ferguson is an investigative reporter for the Bangor Daily News. She writes about criminal justice, police and housing.