It’s “all aboard” for officers from at least 10 Maine police agencies as they take the train to learn more about the laws against trespassing on railroad property. The police will board a Maine Eastern Railroad train on Friday in Wiscasset and travel to Brunswick, where they’ll continue their discussion at Town Council chambers. Leading the discussion will be Michail Grizkewitsch, a trespass specialist for the Federal Railroad Administration. Trespassing includes walking, hunting, riding a snowmobile, ATV, or motorbike, or cross-country skiing on or along a railroad right of way. It also includes fishing or jumping from railroad bridges, and vandalizing or tampering with rail equipment. The safety of officers investigating such incidents will also be covered on Friday’s train ride.
Three apartment buildings caught fire in downtown Lewiston last night.A report came in around seven that an apartment on Pierce Street was on fire.It spread to two other buildings.Firefighters worked on the three buildings throughout the night to make sure all hot spots were out.There are ten apartments in the complex. Residents of seven of them have been burned out of their homes. The Red Cross is helping them.
A judge has upheld the public’s right to use Goose Rocks Beach in Kennebunkport, saying the public established that right by its longtime use. In siding with the town, Superior Court Judge G. Arthur Brennan said it had shown the public had continuously used the beach for at least 100 years. The ruling comes after a 2009 suit by beachfront property owners, who claimed beach ownership to the low water mark and said the public had no right to cross it. Town manager Larry Mead called the decision “a great victory” ensuring the beach can be enjoyed by future generations. Plaintiff Robert Almeder said the case will be appealed to Maine’s highest court. He said the town is trying to take the property in front of their homes for nothing and commercialize the beach.
A man accused of setting three fires and shooting at police in southern Maine is in jail. 47 year-old Donald Henson is charged with attempted murder.Authorities say he set his home in Dayton on fire.Police also believe he set a home in Saco on fire, as well as a car.They tell us he barricaded himself inside his garage yesterday and shot at police.Two relatives were able to escape the burning home.Henson was arrested four hours later.
A judge has reversed his decision about a prostitution case in Kennebunk, ruling that addresses and other identifying information can now be released for men charged with paying for sex with a Zumba instructor.29 year-old Alexis Wright is charged with 106 counts of prostitution, invasion of privacy and other charges. Her alleged business partner, Mark Strong, Senior faces 59 misdemeanor counts.An attorney for the Portland Press Herald says Justice Thomas Warren agreed today that the addresses and ages of the suspected clients can be made public, along with their names. On Monday, he allowed the release of the names but no other identifying information.Police in Kennebunk are expected to re-issue a list of 21 names of men who have been issued summons so far.
A lung cancer survivor from Augusta is hosting an upcoming event to raise money for cancer research.Deb Violette was diagnosed with lung cancer 14 years ago.Her organization, the Lung Cancer Free Alliance, is hosting a two-mile walk to raise money for lung cancer research.”Our mission is to reduce the suffering caused from lung cancer and the diagnosis of lung cancer by raising much needed money for research, education, and community support.”The Save Your Breath Walk is scheduled for Saturday November 3rd, at the Buker School on Armory Street in Augusta.Online registration ends this Saturday.It’s $18 to register online but $22 on the day of the walk.For more information you can go to www.lungcancerfreealliance.org.
A task force charged with investigating Portland’s homelessness problem is recommending establishing three 35-unit housing complexes. And it says the city must work more closely with surrounding communities. The task force presented its recommendations to the city council Monday. It says the three new housing complexes should provide services for issues contributing to homelessness, such as substance abuse And it says solutions must involve surrounding communities, since many of the homeless are coming from them. It says about a third of those seeking shelter in the city are from Portland, while another third are from surrounding communities without shelters and rest come from out of state. The Portland Press Herald reports, the task force didn’t give a cost estimate for its recommendations. A public hearing is scheduled for next month.
A 32-year-old Biddeford woman is among 11 people who’ve been honored by the Portland City Council for saving an elderly woman from drowning. Katie Nelson was one of six civilians, two police officers and three firefighters who rescued 84-year-old Ursula Nixon, who drove her car into Portland Harbor on Sept. 28. The Portland Press Herald reports, that Mayor Michael Brennan Monday singled out Nelson for pulling Nixon from her sinking car and Lt. Robert Slaving of the Portland Fire Department for swimming to shore with Nixon. Nelson was dining with a friend when she heard a crash. She ran down the street and jumped into the harbor to reach the partially submerged car. Nixon’s niece, Catherine Shorr of Portland says Nixon is recovering from injuries suffered in the accident.
An old wood-piling bridge in southern Maine is shutting down for a year to be replaced with a new span. The Sewall’s Bridge over the York River in York is closing on Tuesday. The new bridge will replicate the features of the existing bridge, with 13 pier structures and a 30-foot navigational channel for marine traffic. It will be about 250 feet long and cost about $3.4 million to build. During construction, traffic will be detoured about four miles to cross the river.
Artwork usually doesn’t require a crane to move. But that’s what it took to install a new sculpture at the Portland Museum of Art. The giant steel artwork by celebrated English sculptor Anthony Caro was lifted by crane into the museum’s Joan B. Burns Sculpture Garden on Monday. The work is entitled, “Moment.” Weighing 1,500 pounds and reaching more than 8 feet tall, it joins another outdoor sculpture, Celeste Roberge’s “Raising Cairn.” The “Moment” is the first of two sculptures by Caro that are being donated by Guido Goldman of Concord, Mass., the founding Director of the Center for European Studies at Harvard University.
Police are preparing to release the names of people charged with engaging a prostitute in a high-profile case in Kennebunk after a Maine judge denied a motion seeking to keep the names secret. Justice Thomas Warren denied a motion Monday seeking to prevent release of the names of alleged customers of a woman charged with prostitution. Stephen Schwartz, lawyer for two of the accused johns, filed a complaint Monday asking that names be kept private and that criminal charges not be pursued. Schwartz says an appeal is unlikely. Kennebunk police say they’re moving forward with releasing some of the names. Zumba fitness instructor Alexis Wright has pleaded not guilty to 106 counts of prostitution, invasion of privacy and other charges. Her business partner faces 59 misdemeanor counts.
Some traffic lanes on the Sarah Mildred Long Bridge between Portsmouth, N.H., and Kittery, Maine, will be closed for up to six days while the bridge is inspected. The New Hampshire Department of Transportation says the work is scheduled to start Monday and will involve lane closures from 7:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. for close to a week. Workers and warning signs will be used to notify motorists, who are being asked to use alternate routes if possible to avoid delays.
Glen Campbell is coming to Portland to give a concert as part of his Goodbye Tour. The Grammy-award winning musician-songwriter plays at the Merrill Auditorium on Tuesday night. Campbell started his career as a session musician in Los Angeles in the 1960s. It now spans five decades, with more than 70 albums, 81 hits and 45 million records sold. Some of his biggest hits include Wichita Lineman, Galveston, By the Time I Get to Phoenix and Gentle on My Mind. Announcing he had been diagnosed with Alzheimer’s disease, Campbell decided to forge ahead with both the tour and his final studio album, Ghost on the Canvas. In Portland, Campbell’s daughter’s band, Victoria Ghost, will open the concert.
A lawyer isn’t giving up on trying to stop the release of names of men accused of giving business to a fitness instructor charged with running a prostitution operation out of her Zumba studio in Kennebunk, Maine. A state judge declined to stop the release of names but a lawyer was filing an appeal Friday. Kennebunk Police Lt. Anthony Burpee said law enforcement officials were awaiting word from the courts. Alexis Wright has pleaded not guilty to prostitution, invasion of privacy and other charges for allegedly accepting money for sex and secretly videotaping her encounters. Her business partner also has pleaded not guilty. Kennebunk police have been issuing summons to Wright’s johns and originally planned to release the first names of suspected clients on Friday. Lawyer Stephen Schwartz is appealing and is also asking permission to take the case to superior court.
Jay police are investigating the theft of about $5,000 in used and new copper from the North Jay Water District building. Cpl. Jeffrey Fournier told the Sun Journal, on Thursday that the burglary is believed to have occurred Monday night or early Tuesday. The copper was reported missing Wednesday morning. New rolled copper and an assortment of fittings and some used copper were among the items taken. The incident remains under investigation. Anyone who has information on the break-in is asked to call Jay police.
A lawyer for two alleged clients of a Maine woman accused of running a prostitution business out of her Zumba dance studio in Kennebunk has filed a motion to block the release of names of the men suspected as her clients. Stephen Schwartz told The Associated Press he filed the motion in court Thursday, a day before police were expected to release the first batch of names. Alexis Wright, 29, pleaded not guilty Tuesday to 106 counts of prostitution, violation of privacy, tax evasion and other charges for allegedly providing sex for money at her fitness studio and a nearby office. The man police say was her business partner, 57-year-old Mark Strong Sr., pleaded not guilty to 59 counts of promotion of prostitution and violation of privacy. Schwartz tells the AP that the release of the names has the potential to ruin people’s reputations, families and businesses and to prejudice any potential jury. The Portland Press Herald first reported the filing of the motion.
Republicans in the Gardiner-Randolph area will select a Maine House of Representatives candidate to replace Daniel Bates, who has died. Party officials will hold a caucus Friday evening. Bates, who was 61, was to have faced Gay Grant, the Democratic candidate in the District 59 race. Bates died Sept. 29 of an apparent heart attack. The House seat is currently held by Democratic Rep. Stephen Hanley of Gardiner, who can’t seek re-election because of term limits. The Kennebec Journal in Augusta, says Friday’s caucus will be held in Gardiner City Council Chambers.
Maine’s US Senate Candidates will debate foreign policy Thursday night.The Mid-Coast Forum on Foreign Relations is sponsoring the debate.All three major candidates are scheduled to attend.It begins at six at the Camden Opera House.There’s no admission fee.Doors open at five.
A New Hampshire fisherman has been convicted of assaulting a Coast Guardsman who had boarded his vessel after he was found operating in a restricted area off Maine’s coast. Federal prosecutors say 53-year-old Scott Jellison of Derry, N.H. was convicted by a jury Wednesday in U.S. District Court in Portland. Authorities say Jellison’s vessel was operating in an area closed to civilians in November 2010 because of a U.S. Navy SEALs training exercise. Coast Guard officers boarded Jellison’s boat. Jellison said his navigation equipment was broken, but the Coast Guard checked and found it worked. Coast Guard officers concluded Jellison was intoxicated. Authorities say Jellison assaulted a Coast Guard officer and resisted attempts to subdue him. Jellison faces up to a year in prison and a $100,000 fine at sentencing.