Republican Sen. Walter Gooley of Farmington wants to make fireworks legal in Maine. Gooley says he knows fireworks can cause injury and start fires, but he believes it would be better to regulate the sale of fireworks because people are buying them elsewhere and bringing them to Maine illegally.Gooley faces opposition from Fire Marshal John Dean. Dean says that even with a law banning fireworks, there have been 45 fires tied to fireworks since 2000 in Maine.As it stands, five states ban all fireworks. Another five, including Maine, allow sparklers.
Uncle Sam wants you, to apply for a government job.It’s estimated that by 2016, 40% of all current federal employees will retire, creating a huge shortage.Plus, the economic stimulus package passed by the federal government is expected to create 120,000 more jobs in just three years.That’s why a federal human resources specialist stopped by the University of Maine today, to let people know how to apply. Julie Saad says he process is more complicated than a private sector position. “This is a lot more involved, and you really want to look for jobs that you really want to apply to because it’s better to do since the applications are so involved. It’s better to do a few quality applications rather than a lot of applications that are not well done.”For more information on federal government jobs, log onto www.makingthedifference.org.
A computer virus that’s affecting Windows users worldwide is no joke.What’s being referred to as the ‘April Fool’s’ virus – or the Conficker Worm – has already infected anywhere from five to twelve million computers just in the U.S.No one knows exactly what this virus is meant to do, but sources say it’s set to ‘go off’ on April 1-st. The I.T. Department at U-Maine has already felt the affects of what could be an April Fools disaster.Ryan Conlogue, from the I.T. department says the virus infect “Four or five dozen computers over the 2 weeks of spring break that we saw.”Called “Conficker”, the virus uses avenues like email and peer-to-peer networks to spread.”The first thing it does, when it gets on your computer is to disable any anti-virus software that your running, it will disable the ability to download patches from Microsoft.” says Dr. Phillip Dickens, a computer science professor at UMaine. So if your computer is running slower than normal, and you haven’t received patches or updates you usually get, you may have the virus. It only infects computers that use Windows, and it works in two stages. First, Strain B of the virus infects the P.C. and disables security.”Making way for Conficker C, which comes in and just embeds itself in your hard drive somewhere and doesn’t do anything until April first.” Says Dickens. On April first, one main system will have complete control of every computer infected. But experts don’t know what the real purpose of the virus is. Dickens says, “It may do something malicious, but my guess is it’s more inclined to try and get personal information try and get credit card numbers.”If you have the MOST up-to-date version of your anti-virus software, it will protect you from Conficker. But If your P.C. already has the virus, you can get information, and download patches and software to fix it off of Microsoft’s website. But experts say this virus is very difficult to get rid of, and it could even block you from visiting anti-virus sites. So, if you’re not super tech savvy, your best bet may be to bring it to a professional. The experts have some tips on keeping your computer safe from viruses like Conficker. 1.) Keep your anti-virus software up-to-date. 2.) Keep your Windows up-dates and patches up-to-date. 3.) Keep your firewall on. 4.) Use more complex passwords. 5.) Don’t open emails or attachments from unfamiliar addresses.
For three weeks, Piscataquis county sheriff’s deputies watched what was going on at a rented house on Water Street in Guilford. On march 20th, authorities searched the place.They tell us they found nine pot plants growing there as well as morphine and processed pot. 36-year old Brenda Sawyer is charged with unlawful possession of a scheduled substance. She’s also charged with cultivating marijuana and possession of drug paraphernalia. Her husband, 37-year old Terry Sawyer, and 38-year old Herbert Hyland have both been summonsed.A 17-year-old boy is also accused of growing pot and having drug paraphernalia.
A man accused of staging a train crash to cover up killing another man has been transferred to another jail. Jail officials say he got into several fights with other inmates. An Oxford County Jail official says 23-year-old Agostino Samson was sent to the Androscoggin County Jail after getting into his third fight in Oxford county’s lockup. Samson is accused of killing 25-year-old Scott Libby and leaving the body in a car on railroad tracks in Bethel, where it was hit by a freight train on February 20th. Police say Libby was beaten with a cast iron frying pan and then strangled.
You work hard for your money, and these days every dollar counts. But, there are criminals out there trying to take away what you’ve worked so hard to get.Unfortunately, identity theft is on the rise again. More people are trying to steal your good name.At the store, online, on the phone – once your private financial information is out there, it’s vulnerable.”For the first time in five years, identity theft has gone up,” says Jane Carpenter at the Attorney General’s office. “It’s gone up twenty percent across the U.S. So unfortunately, these economic times are fertile ground for identity thieves.”Carpenter says most victims don’t report the crime to police like they should. But she says the most recent data indicates it’s more widespread than people think.”One in every ten Mainers has been a victim of identity theft,” she says.People we talked to who’ve had their identities stolen didn’t want to appear on camera. They felt like they should have known better. “They don’t call the police, they just deal with it with their credit card company,” says Chris Greeley. “Some people are embarrassed to report it – or some people don’t even notice. Many times, a criminal will make small purchases and if you use your credit card a lot you won’t even realize it.”As a Holden police officer and a state representative, Greeley says identity theft in our area is growing. And he says we’re making it easier for criminals by giving out information without even realizing it.Greeley himself almost got caught the other day.”I received an email that looked fraudulent. So I X’ed out of it,” he says.Then a new screen popped up, asking him to log in again to AOL – which he almost did.”Then I immediately would have given them my screen name and password, which of course would have given them access to my credit card information for that account – pretty clever,” he says.As criminals get more creative, they’re branching out into other forms of identity theft.”One of the forms is criminal identity theft,” says Carpenter. “In that, someone uses someone else’s information, and is tried, arrested and convicted under someone else’s name. So we’ve had Mainers that have called and found out they have a criminal history.”Also, medical I.D. theft is on the rise. People get ahold of your information to use your health insurance or prescriptions, putting information on your medical record that doesn’t belong to you.Your name, your address, and your social security number – those are the only tools identity thieves need.”Do you have any idea what somebody could do with that information?” says Greeley. “They could attempt to open up accounts in your name, if you have kids they could get access to your kids information, medical records, who knows what.”Tomorrow, we’ll tell you how you can outsmart the bad guys – and better protect yourself from being a victim of identity theft.
For three weeks, Piscataquis County Sheriff’s Deputies watched what was going on at a rented house on Water Street in Guilford.On March 20th, authorities searched the place.They told TV-5 they found nine pot plants growing there as well as morphine and processed pot.36-year old Brenda Sawyer is charged with unlawful possession of a scheduled substance.She’s also charged with cultivating marijuana and possession of drug paraphernalia.Her husband, 37-year-old Terry Sawyer, and another man, 38-year old Herbert Hyland have both been summonsed.A 17-year-old boy is also accused of growing pot and having drug paraphernalia.The adults are due in court on May 18th.
Nine fire departments were called out Monday morning to a fire on Salt Pond Road in Blue Hill.The home on Route 172 was in flames when units arrived.The home was unoccupied and the heat had been removed from the residence.But there was electricity still going to the building.The initial call came into the fire department at about 9-50 Monday morning as a chimney fire.It turned out that was pretty good timing according to Blue Hill Fire Chief Denny Robertson.” Happened to have one of the Captains coming down the street he came right straight down and confirmed it to be a working structure fire, called in mutual aid.”” We made an interior attack from downstairs ventilated the roof, chased the fire up and out of the roof.”The Fire Marshal’s Office has been called in to investigate.It’s the second unoccupied home Blue Hill firefighters have responded to this month.A man was arrested after a March 13th fire at a vacant home.
The Fifth Annual Discovery Day was held at the Maine Discovery Museum in Bangor.It’s not a new exhibit.It’s put on by the Parents Are Teachers Too coalition to help pregnant and parenting moms 21 and younger learn new ideas about parenting.Most enter the program having been told just one thing according to 20 year old Katy York. “They just tell you to expect to have fun, relax and get a break from your little one.”19 year old Chelsie Smith has been through this before and agrees “This is my third year here so every time I’ve come I’ve always had a really good time.”This year, 31 young women, between the ages of 15 and 21, either expecting or parenting, were on hand for a series of workshops all designed to help them be moms.According to the Executive Director of the Maine Discovery Museum, Andrea Stark “We want them to know that this community supports them and their children and their families and that there are many resources not least of which is the Discovery Museum for them to enjoy and help them be good moms and also do something for themselves.”18 year old Chelsey Henderson has known about it for a couple of years “I was pregnant with my daughter when I was 16 and my Mom had actually looked Good Samaritan up in the phone book and I started going to school there and they do Discovery Day every year.”They all took part in activities they can take home and share with their kids, like dancing, singing and scrapbooking.For the young women, it’s nice to be around others their age, who share the same experiences.”It is nice to talk to other people that are around your age that have children as well” said 19 year old Erica Oliveira “and being able to just to relax and be way from our kids for at least a day.”Even after they cross the age limit, Stark said some want to come back.”About a week ago at the museum I had two moms here with their little kids and they were having a great time at the museum they’ve become members and it turns out that they had been Discovery Day moms a year or two ago.”
We are bombarded with written words all the time. Now imagine what it would be like, if you couldn’t read them.Literacy Volunteers of Bangor is celebrating its 40th year of helping adults with their reading skills.Joy Hollowell tells us more about this organization and the work they do.”My first student was a young man who was 22. And my oldest student was a lady who was heading towards 80 (laughs).”Rachel Heath joined Literacy Volunteers of Bangor back in 19-78. The teacher was looking for something to fill her time during the winter. More than 30 years later, she is still an active volunteer.”there’s a great deal of satisfaction in having a student come up to you and say, I got my GED, and my son is now getting his,” says Rachel Heath.Rachel joined other tutors Monday at the Bangor Public library, to celebrate the organization’s 40th year of teaching adults how to read.Mary Marin Lyon is the Executive Director of Literacy Volunteers of Bangor.”today, we’re actually recognizing our founders, their names are Agnes Beckwith and Sister Mary Begninga. And 40 years ago, they saw a need in their community and they crossed religious lines, which was significant at that time, one was a Catholic nun and the other was a Baptist woman, and they came together to really look a how they could join forces,” says Lyon.Turns out T-V 5 played a role in helping the two women with their mission.”Agnes Beckwith, who was a co-founder of this organization, hit the ground running. And she went to your station to promote this whole concept, which was new in Maine at the time,” says Emily Cameron, whose been researching the group’s history.This year, Literacy Volunteers of Bangor will help about 200 adults in our area improve their reading skills, a gift that both the student and tutor benefit from.”oh, when you see the light come on in their eyes that they really get something, that’s everything. That’s the biggest high you can get (laughs).”For more information on Literacy Volunteers of Bangor, you can call 947-8451 or go to their website, www.lvbangor.org
A fire Sunday morning on Cross Town Road in Embden sent two women to the hospital.63 year old Gloria Lane and her sister, 47 year old June DeLong were in the house at the time of the fire.With the help of a passer by they were able to break a window and get out of the house.Lane and DeLong were taken to Redington-Fairview General Hospital in Skowhegan. Lane suffered smoke inhalation and DeLong had some cuts from breaking through the window. Officials the Hospital say both women were treated and released Sunday evening.Fire fighters from Anson, Madison, East Madison, and Solon were called in to fight the blaze.The Fire Marshal says the fire started near a cigarette container on porch, and has been ruled as accidental.The porch was destroyed. The house suffered moderate damage.
Police were on the scene of an armed robbery in Kenduskeag Sunday.It’s the second armed robbery on Route 15 in 24 hours.It happened just before 9pm at Sam’s Qwik Stop, near the Stetson Road intersection.State Police say a masked man entered the store and pointed a handgun at the female clerk’s head.He demanded money, then made off with an undisclosed amount of cash.We’re told the clerk is shaken up, but doing well.Officers tried using dogs to pick up the suspect’s tracks, but rain made that difficult.They’ve alerted officers in the area to look out for the suspect. “At this time, we know it was a male suspect, a white male, over 6 feet, wearing a dark sweatshirt and a ski mask, demanding cash.”Police tell TV5 they do have surveillance video from the store.They say they may release that footage Monday in the hopes that someone can identify the suspect.State Police want to hear from anyone who may have information on Sunday night’s robbery…you can contact them at 866-2121.
Police are investigating an armed robbery in Bangor. A woman was held up at gun point, and the suspect hasn’t yet been found.”To think that something like that can happen here, it scares me,” says Casey Commeau, who works nearby.A female clerk was working alone at the Tom T. Irving on Broadway, when, just after 9 p.m. Saturday, a man walked in, wearing a mask.The clerk told police the man pointed a gun at her and demanded cash, saying it was ‘no joke.’She gave him an undisclosed amount of money, and he ran off toward the Burleigh Road area.”She did the right thing,” says Bangor Police Sgt. Paul Edwards. “When the robbery occurred, she got the best description she could, she locked the door, and she called 911 immediately.”Crews searched the area with a dog, but didn’t find the suspect.”I was totally surprised when I heard about it, and I just feel really bad for the business next door,” says Rhonda Charette, manager at the Gifford’s Ice Cream shop.Workers at Gifford’s were just leaving for the night when police arrived.”There were a few police cars that pulled in and they asked them if they had seen anybody – and they said no – and the police told them they probably should leave,” says Charette.”It’s scary because it is a small town. So it doesn’t happen too often, but I mean, I work right across the street,” says Commeau, who works at Kev-Lan. “I can’t believe that someone would be that desperate.”Edwards says while there have been a lot of robberies lately, this type of incident is rare.”We’re not seeing strong-armed robberies, what you would call something like this, where a gun is actually pointed at someone and cash is demanded,” he says.The clerk wasn’t injured. Edwards says she handled herself well in a bad situation.”Don’t try to fight or get in the way,” he says, “of people who are demanding money and are desperate enough to show a gun.”Police are still investigating the case and hope to make an arrest soon.If you have any information, they ask that you call the Detective Division at 947-7384.
Bishop Richard Malone was in Waterville Sunday, celebrating Mainers with disabilities.The leader of the Diocese of Portland presided over a special mass honoring those with disabilities and their families at Notre Dame Church.The service was open to anyone with physical, emotional or mental disabilities, plus their family members and caregivers.The Bishop says he hopes the celebration encourages parishes across the state to hold their own masses to appreciate the struggles and celebrate the gifts of those with disabilities.He also called on churches throughout Maine to make their facilities and programs as fully accessible as possible.< "these people with disabilities can sometimes be forced to live on the fringes of society and we don't want that to happen with the church. People with disabilities are part of every parish community. They belong here, they're loved and they have a role.">According to the Diocese, parishioners with disabilities attend church about as half as often as other parishioners because of the physical challenges involved.
The chairman of the state Republican Party says he’s not impressed with a bill that would allow immigrants and other non-citizens to vote in municipal elections.GOP Chairman Charlie Webster is calling the proposal “lame brained,” and says the lawmakers sponsoring it should be focusing on bigger problems like solving the state’s budget and healthcare problems.The sponsoring lawmakers represent Auburn and Portland…cities with large immigrant communities.Maine’s top election official, Secretary of State Matthew Dunlap, says he doesn’t think the proposal does any harm.
Times could get even tougher for Maine’s dairy industry.Wholesale milk prices have continued to drop.Back in July, farmers were getting about 24 dollars for 100 pounds of milk. Now, they’re only getting about 13 dollars, even though retail prices have stayed basically the same.In the past, a state subsidy program has provided some cushion for farmers hurt by the falling prices.But budget problems could mean less money for that program.Since 1980, the number of dairy farms in Maine has dropped from nearly 2 thousand to about 330.
A man from Warren is seriously injured after a snowmobile crash in Northern Maine.It happened Friday night, just after 11 p.m.Game Wardens say 37-year-old James Sewall was hurt when his sled hit a bridge and got tangled in the bridge’s rails.Sewall was taken to Northern Maine Medical center with serious injuries to his torso and right arm.No word yet on his condition.Wardens say Sewall was wearing a helmet.
Police are investigating a fatal accident in the town of Wilton.It happened Friday afternoon on Route 2, near the intersection of Route 156.73-year-old Avis Pettengill of Jay was pronounced dead at the scene.She’d been in the passenger seat of a Chevy SUV involved in the head-on collision.The other four people in the SUV were injured.Shawn and Heather Hiscock of Jay were taken by helicopter to a Portland hospital with head injuries.A 2-and-a-half year old boy in the car was also flown with them for treatment of his injuries.An 8-year-old boy was taken to a local hospital for treatment.No word yet on their conditions.The other vehicle involved was a Dodge truck driven by 59-year-old Richard Greco of Dixfield.He was taken to a hospital with head trauma but has since been released.Police say everyone was wearing a seat belt, and the children were in car seats.No word yet on what caused the crash.Police closed Route 2 for close to 4 hours while they did a reconstruction.They’re asking anyone who witnessed the accident to call the Wilton Police at 645-3876.
Women packed the Bangor Civic Center Saturday for the annual “What Women Want” Expo.It was a chance for women in the area to get together and check out the latest in local services and products designed just for them.One of the highlights was a chance for local fans to meet syndicated radio host Bob Lacey.He’s the cohost of the “Bob and Sheri” show, heard weekday mornings on 92.9 WEZQ FM.Lacey brought his sidekick, Lamar Richardson, otherwise known as “The People’s Movie Critic.”The duo said they were thrilled to be back in Maine, meeting their female fans.< "Coming up to Bangor or anywhere downeast is really the highlight of my year. I've been coming here since I was a baby, and I know if I can get him to work harder so I can make money and retire, it's where i'm gonna end up.">Lacey’s co-host, Sheri Lynch, couldn’t make the trip this year, but sent her regards to the fans who came out to support the show.
A federal appeals court says a Maine woman can head to trial with a sex discrimination suit against a Maine insurance company.Laurie Chadwick of Sebago says her employer, Anthem Health Plans of Maine, denied her a promotion because they thought her four kids would make the new job responsibilities too tough.Now the first U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals has ruled that Chadwick can take her claims to trial.Augusta civil rights lawyer David Webbert, who represents Chadwick, says the case could be a landmark in an emerging area ofdiscrimination law.Anthem denies any wrongdoing in the case.