Police stand outside of an apartment building on Stillwater Avenue with a cloud of white smoke behind them, in Old Town June 14, 2021. Credit: Sawyer Loftus / The Penobscot Times

An Old Town man who engaged police in a nearly 20-hour standoff Monday may have been suffering from a “religious delusion,” prosecutors said in court Tuesday.

Thadius Wind, 46, made his initial appearance in court before Penobscot County Superior Justice Ann Murray via Zoom from the Penobscot County Jail. Wind was arrested Monday evening after he barricaded himself in his Stillwater Avenue apartment after midnight, police said.

Wind was charged with terrorizing with a deadly weapon, criminal threatening and violating his conditions of release.

In court Tuesday, Superior Court Justice Ann Murray did not ask Wind to enter pleas as he has not yet been indicted by a Penobscot County grand jury. Wind said he didn’t agree with the charges.

Initially, Lori Renzullo, a summer intern with the Penobscot County District Attorney’s Office who represented the office in court, asked that Wind have his bail revoked from a June 2 arrest and that he be held on $30,000 cash bail for Monday’s charges.

“He made statements indicating that he was suffering from religious delusions including that he believed he holds an Arc of the Covenant and that his deceased son is God and is talking to him,” Renzullo said.

Renzullo asked the judge to consider the state’s bail request citing concerns that Wind may be a danger to the public and the judicial process if released.

When police initially responded to Wind’s address Sunday night, officers could see Wind swinging a samurai-type sword and threatening to cut the officers’ heads off, according to Renzullo. Police quickly evacuated the other occupants of the apartment building and called in members of the Maine State Police’s tactical and crisis negotiation teams.

However, Jeremiah Haley, Wind’s attorney for the day, said the state’s request for $30,000 was too high.

“I think that the request for $30,000 cash bail is frankly grossly excessive for a man that was simply in his apartment,” Haley said. “This isn’t somebody that was out in public waving a sword making threatening statements of that nature.”

Wind was playing music loudly and dancing with an ornamental sword, while commemorating the death of his son early Monday morning, but there may be independent witnesses who suggest Wind is suffering from mental health issues, Haley said. 

Although Wind already faces several charges, including two misdemeanors from Oxford County, the state is anticipating adding more charges that stem from the standoff, Renzullo said.

Renzullo said along with those cases, Wind was arrested on charges related to him allegedly threatening his neighbor and assaulting a police officer on June 2, as well as a prior felony conviction for disturbing the peace with a dangerous weapon in Arizona.

The state also requested the mental health evaluation process be put in motion, which will subject Wind to a psychological evaluation to determine his competency and responsibility at the time of the standoff.

Justice Murray appointed Kaylee Folster to represent Wind and ordered he be held on $10,000 cash bail with conditions that he not possess dangerous weapons, that he submit to random searches for weapons and a mental health evaluation within one hour of release, and that he  follow two non-contact orders issued to protect two witnesses.

Wind is next due in court July 16.

Sawyer Loftus is an investigative reporter at the Bangor Daily News. A graduate of the University of Vermont, Sawyer grew up in Vermont where he worked for Vermont Public Radio, The Burlington Free Press...