Car strikes, kills pedestrian walking in middle of Route 1

Maine officials are investigating an accident in which a car struck and killed a pedestrian who was walking in the middle of U.S. Route 1.

The Knox County Sheriff’s Department said 30-year-old Robert Hamilton of Warren was killed instantly when a car struck him shortly before 10 p.m. Saturday on a dark section of road without street lights.

Chief Deputy Tim Carroll said the driver, 27-year-old Kurt Olesch of Old Town, tried to swerve but couldn’t avoid hitting Hamilton. Investigators don’t think alcohol was a factor, but Olesch was charged with operating after suspension.

Carroll said it’s not known why Hamilton was walking in the middle of the road.


Woman, 38, seriously hurt in single-car crash

An Indian Island woman was flown to a Bangor hospital after she was seriously injured Saturday night in a single-car crash on Interstate 95, state police said. No information was available Sunday about her condition.

Amanda King, 38, was driving north on the highway when her 2008 Subaru station wagon left the road, crossed into the median and struck several trees, according to Maine State Trooper Aaron Turcotte.

The accident was reported at 8:42 p.m. and occurred around Mile 151 on the interstate.

King, who was wearing a seat belt, was taken to Sebasticook Valley Health in Pittsfield, then flown by LifeFlight helicopter to Eastern Maine Medical Center in Bangor, Turcotte said.

She was the only person in the car, which caught fire in the engine compartment after the accident, Turcotte said. The Pittsfield Fire Department extinguished the blaze before it could spread to the rest of the vehicle.

The accident is still under investigation, but speed and alcohol do not appear to have been involved, Turcotte said.


Distracted driving blamed for collision that injured 4

A head-on collision on Route 202 in Alfred sent four people to local hospitals with non-life threatening injuries Sunday afternoon.

State Trooper Matthew Williams said witnesses reported that a 2005 Hyundai Elantra sedan operated by Joshua Markham of South Berwick had been weaving across an eastbound lane when it hit a Subaru Forester that was heading westbound.

Markham and his two passengers, Heather Markham of South Berwick and Elsie Thompson of New Hampshire, were transported to local hospitals as was the driver of the Subaru, 35-year-old Sherree Call of Lebanon.

Williams said the cause of the crash appears to have been distracted driving but that the particulars of what led to the accident and whether charges would be filed have not been determined yet.


Saturday fire destroys house and garage

A fire on Saturday afternoon destroyed a home and garage on Fenwicks Drive.

Tellis Fenwick, 65, said he was working in his garage Saturday when he heard a popping sound and saw flames coming out of the walls. He called the fire department and got his wife, Brenda, out of the house.

The couple was able to save a few photographs but nothing else from the 11/2-story house, which Fenwick had built in 1986.

“We were home when it happened and I have no idea what started it. I saw flames in the garage and within 10 minutes the roof had caved in,” Fenwick said.

The fire was reported about noon Saturday and had engulfed most of the house and attached three-bay garage by the time firefighters arrived, said Assistant Fire Chief Brian Rundlett, of the New Portland Fire Department.

The home, which was located at 95 Fenwicks Dr., is a total loss, Rundlett said. No one was injured, and the couple was able to get their pets out before firefighters arrived, he said.


Residents helping family of girl injured at Sugarloaf

People in a coastal Maine community are banding together to help the family of a 6-year-old girl who was seriously injured in a ski accident.

Jessica Grace Walker of Harpswell lost control and hit a tree while skiing Monday with her family at Sugarloaf USA.

The girl’s aunt told WCSH-TV that Jessica suffered a serious head injury but could have been killed if she hadn’t been wearing a helmet.

As Jessica recovers at Maine Medical Center in Portland, Harpswell residents are raising money to help the family pay for medical expenses.

A benefit supper and silent auction are planned at the Harpswell Community School on Friday night. A Facebook page has also been set up under Jessica’s name to provide information and updates.


Suspect in purse snatchings jailed after high-speed chase

A 34-year-old man is in jail after allegedly leading police on high-speed chase when they attempted to stop him following reports of two purse snatchings in Augusta.

Police said Jed St. Hilaire of West Gardiner was charged with robbery, theft, eluding and other charges following his arrest Saturday night.

Police said they attempted to stop St. Hilaire’s car at 6 p.m. in Augusta following reports of purse snatchings in Wal-Mart and Hannaford parking lots earlier in the day.

Instead of stopping, St. Hilaire allegedly led police on a chase through the city and on to Interstate 95 at speeds of up to 110 mph, at one point driving south in the northbound lanes before stopping his car. St. Hilaire was arrested after he allegedly tried to flee on foot.

Application time at hand for moose permit lottery

The deadline for applying for the 2013 Maine moose permit lottery is approaching.

Paper applications must be dropped off at the Maine Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife Augusta office or postmarked to that address by Monday.

Online applications can be found at www.mefishwildlife.com and must be completed by May 14 at 11:59 p.m.

Permit winners and their sub-permitees will be able to hunt in one of the department’s 25 wildlife management districts, which cover more than 21,000 square miles.

Legislative changes put into effect last year give longtime lottery applicants who have never won a permit a better chance at winning.

This year’s moose permit lottery winners will be announced in June.


State prison’s showroom holds annual spring sale

A well-known retail store that sells wooden furniture and knickknacks made by Maine State Prison inmates is holding its annual spring sale.

The Maine State Showroom’s “spring spectacular” sale began Sunday and runs through April 21. During the sale, all in-stock products are marked down 25 percent.

The store sells a wide variety of wood products, ranging from bureaus and bookcases to ship models and cutting boards made in the wood shop at the Maine State Prison in Warren. The store is located on U.S. Route 1 in Thomaston, near the site of the old state prison before it was demolished a decade ago.

The Department of Corrections said the store has annual sales of about $1.5 million.


Moose hunters urged to apply for permits

New Hampshire Fish and Game officials are urging those who covet a moose hunting permit to get their applications in soon.

Officials say they have sold about 5,000 applications so far and expect that number to rise to more than 14,000 by the May 31 deadline.

Applications are $15 for residents and $25 for non-residents. The 275 permits that will be issued this year will be drawn in a lottery June 21.

Those who enter the lottery for consecutive years accumulate points that increase their chances of winning.

Those who win a permit must pay to obtain a moose hunting license, at a cost of $150 for residents and $500 for non-residents.

Hunters from 18 states won permits last year.

Moose season this year runs from Oct. 19-27.