Fire ripped through an apartment in Rockland Monday afternoon.Around four, fire crews responded to the blaze at One Cottage Street.Fire officials tell us that there are five units in the building but only one sustained major damage.The tenants of the apartment that caught fire were not home at the time and everyone else that was in the building got out safely.The Fire Marshal’s office was called in and ruled the fire accidental saying that they could not rule out the possibility of the fire being sparked by an electrical problem.
Sunday marked three decades since the first case of AIDS was reported in the United States.Since then, many worldwide have died from the disease, but so many more are living, thanks to advances in medicine and awareness.The first case of AIDS in Maine was reported in 1984.The Eastern Maine Aids Network in Bangor was established in 1987 and that year, there were 20 new cases.Executive Director Sean Weber joined the organization in 1989 and he says at that time, HIV was considered a death sentence.Now, many in the health field view it as a chronic disease instead.Weber credits modern medicine for giving patients more control over HIV but he’s careful to point out that as the treatments progress, so does the disease.In 2010, folks in their 40’s accounted for the highest percentage of new cases in our state.So far this year, there have been fourteen new cases of HIV.
Maine lawmakers met over the weekend to try to get close to agreeing on a budget for the next two years.A proposal to cut the Maine Rx program that reduces prescription prices was replaced with a plan to make the program self-sufficient through $15.00 annual fees.Last week the appropriations committee agreed to some of the governor’s suggested budget moves, including a three year cost of living wage freeze for state employees and retirees.The new budget is supposed to be in place by the end of this month.
The Kennebunk man who triggered Maine’s first Amber Alert is going to prison for six years.Gary Traynham was accused of assaulting his former girlfriend, then running off with their two year old daughter in November 2009.He was convicted in March of assault and criminal restraint.He was also accused of rape and burglary, but the jury was deadlocked on those charges so prosecutors dropped them.
Food pantries throughout the state got a pretty good boost Monday.Two food pantries in each of Maine’s eight northern-most counties received $500 and a loaf of bread.It’s all part of the 7th annual Share the Bread event.The Maine Credit Unions’ Campaign for Ending Hunger presented a total of $17,000 to hunger organizations Monday.
A Bucksport man will spend 4-and-a-half years behind bars for stealing firearms from a shop in Orrington.20-year-old Brandon Caparotta was sentenced Monday in a Bangor courtroom.Court records say Caparotta and another man stole nearly a dozen firearms from a dealer in Orrington.Caparotta pleaded guilty in November.
A Belfast man is recovering, after he was hit by a pick up while bicycling Friday night.Police say 21-year old Tyler Gerry was riding along Route One in Belfast, around 8:30 in the evening.The driver of the pick up told police he had just passed a vehicle travelling north, and was merging back into his lane.He says he saw the bike drift into his path.The driver reportedly tried to stop, but was unable to avoid hitting Gerry.Police say the bike rolled some distance.Gerry was first taken to Waldo County Hospital, then life flighted to Eastern Maine Medical Center in Bangor in fair condition.His family told police he has some bleeding in the brain, but is able to communicate with them.