Police are telling people to be aware of their surroundings after 82-year-old James Pearson was killed.

The Portland Press Herald is reporting that Pearson, a retired teacher and well-known Christmas tree farmer, was killed by someone he did not know. He appears to have been killed at the Beach Ridge Farm, a family-run business, and the location of his home.

They sold Christmas trees but had been sold out since December 1, according to the newspaper.

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Police are not saying how he died, but Pearson's wife was reportedly home at the time of the attack. She tried to help her husband, and family called 911, the Portland Press Herald reported. He was pronounced dead at the hospital Sunday morning after the attack around 8:15 am.

Jim, as he was known, was well liked and respected in the community. He had known Scarborough's police chief, Robert Moulton, for years. Moulton echoes what many in the community are saying, that they simply can't imagine who would want to hurt such a good man, according to the newspaper.

That coupled with the fact that it is being called a random act by police, have people in the area on edge.

Police are working hard on finding out exactly what happened. Anyone with information is asked to contact Maine State Police at 624-7076 or Scarborough Police at 883-6361.

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