Mavodones joins 11 others in race to be elected mayor

Mayor Nick Mavodones on Tuesday joined a large field of candidates running for the full-time job.

Portland voters will elect a mayor in November for the first time since 1923. A charter change adopted last year created the popularly elected post.

Mavodones, who has been mayor four times in his 11 years on the Portland City Council, said he will focus on economic development, education, preserving the social safety net and public safety in running for the post.

A dozen candidates are running for mayor. The winner will serve four years, be paid an annual salary of about $66,000 and have veto power over the budget, although that decision could be overridden by six votes on the council.

Mavodones had opposed the charter change. But, he said, voters decided that they want an elected mayor and he hopes to shape the job by becoming the first one to hold the post since the charter change was adopted.

Two other councilors are also running for the post – David Marshall, who announced earlier this spring, and Jill Duson, who made the announcement on her Facebook page and is expected to formally join the race this week.

Education chief will visit city’s public schools June 7

Maine Education Commissioner Stephen Bowen will visit Portland public schools June 7.

Bowen will visit Casco Bay High School from noon to 12:45 p.m., King Middle School from 1:15 to 2 p.m. and Reiche Community School from 2:15 to 3 p.m. Bowen also will visit district partners at LearningWorks and The Real School.

Bowen will then meet with the Portland School Board at the start of its regular business meeting at
7 p.m. in Room 250 of Casco Bay High School.

The meeting will include a brief performance by the Pihcintu Children’s Chorus, made up of girls of many nationalities who attend the city’s schools.


Naples driver faces charges in alleged road rage incident

A Naples man faces charges of criminal threatening and having a loaded firearm in a vehicle after what authorities describe as a road rage incident in Casco on Sunday.

Deputies with the Cumberland County Sheriff’s Office arrested Matthew Martin, 38, shortly after
5:35 p.m. on Route 302.

The alleged victims, a New Hampshire couple with their two 2-year-old sons in the car, told a deputy that a line of westbound traffic had pulled over to let a state trooper’s cruiser with emergency lights pass. As cars pulled back into the roadway, a red Ford Excursion was unable to merge back into traffic right away, the New Hampshire couple said.

The Excursion drove up close behind the couple and when the man looked in his mirror, he said he saw the driver of the Excursion holding what looked like a shotgun out the window pointing toward the car, the sheriff’s office said.

The New Hampshire man braked and the Excursion went past, but then pulled over on State Park Road. The driver pointed the shotgun at the couple and threatened them, they said.

The couple called police and followed the Excursion until a deputy arrived and pulled it over on Edes Falls Road.


Teen in critical condition after two-car accident

The driver of a car that crashed Tuesday morning on Pope Road was in critical condition at Maine Medical Center on Tuesday night.

Patrick J. Thorne, 18, of Standish was driving a Subaru Impreza north on Pope Road when the car drifted into the oncoming lane on a curve near Swett Road at 7:15 a.m., police said. The car collided with a southbound Ford Expedition driven by Cynthia Sundquist, 54, of Windham.

Two passengers in the Subaru, Sheldon Lewis, 18, and Andrew Frank, 17, were taken to Maine Medical Center where they were treated and released.

Thorne was the most seriously injured and firefighters had to extricate him from the car. A LifeFlight helicopter transported him to Maine Medical Center.

Sundquist was taken by ambulance to Maine Medical Center, where she was listed in satisfactory condition. Her passenger, Nicholas Sundquist, 16, was not injured.


Officials identify woman, 71, discovered dead in stream

Officials have identified the 71-year-old woman whose body was found in Kenduskeag Stream in downtown Bangor.

The state Medical Examiner’s Office identified the woman as Linda Briggs, but her address was not immediately known.

Briggs’ body was discovered Monday morning shortly before the start of Bangor’s Memorial Day parade. Many spectators who were waiting for the parade watched as rescue personnel pulled the woman from the water.

The cause and manner of death are pending, but police told the Bangor Daily News that the death does not appear suspicious.


Two cities bucking trend with elementary students

Schools in Maine’s second largest city and a neighboring community are dealing with a baby boom that bucks a statewide trend of declining student enrollment in local schools.

Higher numbers of students are filling elementary school classrooms in Lewiston and Auburn.

Many Maine school districts are seeing dramatic reductions in student numbers attributed to an aging population and declining birth rate.

The 2010 census says the trend in Lewiston and Auburn is going to continue. The population of children under 5 years old is growing, again bucking a statewide trend.

Part of the growth can be attributed to the Somali immigrant community in Lewiston, but it’s not the only factor.

Superintendents in both Lewiston and Auburn told the Sun Journal more families are moving to the communities.


Police arrest man suspected of burglarizing 13 homes

Police in Auburn said they’ve arrested a man suspected in 13 recent daytime burglaries who jumped from a third-story window to elude police.

Chad Charest was located by police on Monday, staying with friends five days after he jumped from the window to escape capture.

Deputy Chief Jason Moen said the 28-year-old suffered leg fractures in the jump. He was released on bail Tuesday to undergo surgery for his injuries.

Moen said Charest is suspected of breaking into 13 homes in the past two weeks and that his case will be presented to a grand jury.

Police said Charest was arrested on warrants charging him with several burglaries in neighboring Lewiston.