Now, both are dead, and a guest in the inn was charged Tuesday with killing them and two others in Maine's biggest homicide case in more than a decade.
Three victims of the weekend carnage at the 130-year-old converted farmhouse were dismembered. State Police Chief Col. Craig Poulin called it "a crime of horrific proportions."
Police said Christian Nielsen, 31, who had worked as a cook at another inn in neighboring Bethel, did not resist when he was arrested on four murder charges.
Poulin said the investigation was too new to comment on a motive, but added, "We believe no one else was involved and there are no additional victims."
Nielsen, who had been living at the Black Bear Bed & Breakfast for a couple of months, told police that his first victim on Friday was James Whitehurst, 50, of Batesville, Ark., whose remains were burned and discarded in the nearby town of Upton, authorities said.
Inn owner Julie Bullard, 65, was killed Sunday, police said. The following day, her daughter, Selby, and friend Cynthia Beatson, 43, were also killed when they arrived at the inn unexpectedly, a state police affidavit said. All three women were dismembered.
Autopsies were being conducted on the three women Wednesday, said Jim Ferland, administrator of the state medical examiner's office. He said police were still at the scene with Whitehurst's remains.
State police were alerted to the carnage Monday evening by Nielsen's father and stepmother, who arrived at inn to find a woman's body and blood outside. Nielsen's father told troopers that he thought his son had committed the killing, according to prosecutors.
Nielsen, questioned by detectives Monday night, admitted killing all four people, the affidavit said. He then led a detective to Upton, where Nielsen said he had disposed of Whitehurst's body, the document said.