Man Accused of Killing Girlfriend in Acadia Park Found in Mexico
The man who allegedly killed his girlfriend in a hit-and-run at Acadia National Park is now in custody, after fleeing to Mexico.
Maine Department of Public Safety spokesperson Shannon Moss says Raymond Lester, 35, of Portland was arrested late Monday evening in Cancun, Mexico. The U.S. Marshals Service Violent Offender Task Force says Lester was charged with murder and unlawful flight to avoid prosecution. He is currently back in the United States and will be extradited to Maine to stand trial.
Lester is accused of hitting his girlfriend, Nicole Mokeme, 35, of South Portland with his vehicle on the campus of Schoodic Institute in Acadia National Park in June and then taking off. Mokeme died at the scene. A nationwide search was launched for Lester and his black BMW X3 SUV. Officials say he was caught through a collective effort between law enforcement agencies in the U.S. and Mexico, after learning that he had fled the country. He was taken into custody without incident on Monday.
Officials say Lester and Mokeme had been in a relationship previously and that Lester had a history of domestic violence. Mokeme was the founder and Executive Creative Director of the Rise and Shine Youth Retreat, a rejuvenation center for the enrichment and liberation of black people in Maine and beyond.
She is survived by several family members, including a daughter, Delaney.
If you or someone you know is experiencing domestic abuse, Partners for Peace encourages you to reach out. Counselors are available 24/7 on the free and confidential helpline at 1-800-863-9909.