February 20

Local & State Dispatches


Eight local businesses cited for selling alcohol to minors

Portland police have cited eight city businesses for allegedly selling alcohol to minors.

Cmdr. Gary Rogers said the businesses will be required to pay an administrative fine – an amount Rogers said would be determined by the Maine Bureau of Alcoholic Beverages.

David Heidrich, a spokesman for the bureau, said each business could face a fine up to $1,800 – provided it is a first offense. However, Heidrich said the state has been levying fines of $550 for first-time offenders in hopes of encouraging better employee training and compliance.

Repeat offenders could have their liquor license suspended and could face much higher fines if the violations are not addressed, Heidrich said.

Police used several college students under the age of 21, who tried to buy alcohol at 56 establishments Saturday. Those establishments included bars, convenience stores and restaurants throughout the city. The businesses were selected at random. Only eight establishments failed to ask the students for proper identification, according to Portland police.

Cited for sale of alcohol to a minor were:

• Hannaford supermarket, 295 Forest Ave.

• Mobil gas station, 518 Forest Ave.

• Walgreens pharmacy, 127 Marginal Way

• The Crow Bar, 189 Congress St.

• Congress Street Bar and Grill, 617 Congress St.

• Local 188, 685 Congress St.

• Frosty Pint, 965 Forest Ave.

• Ruski’s, 212 Danforth St.


Boy hurt when snowmobile driven by mother hits trees

Authorities in Maine say a 9-year-old Massachusetts boy was injured when his mother lost control of the snowmobile they were riding.

A spokesman for the Maine Warden Service said 47-year-old Ann Vinton of Weymouth, Mass., was driving a rented snowmobile in Bethel with her son as a passenger on Tuesday morning when she lost control, left the trail and struck several small trees.

The boy suffered facial cuts. He was taken to Stephens Memorial Hospital in Norway where he was treated and released.

Vinton was riding with her husband and second child who were on another snowmobile. No one else was hurt.

Authorities told the Sun Journal that operator inexperience was a contributing factor in the accident. No charges are expected.


State investigating failure of bridge’s span to close

The Maine Department of Transportation will investigate what caused a span on the northbound side of the Casco Bay Bridge – the side that allows traffic to enter Portland from South Portland – to become stuck Wednesday night.

The span became stuck and would not close around 7 p.m. but workers were able to get it to return to a level position about 20 minutes later.

Despite the fact that traffic was flowing smoothly again, MDOT spokesman Ted Talbot said an electrician will examine the bridge’s operating system to determine what caused the bridge span to malfunction.

Talbot said there are dozens of fuses – called limit switches – in the bridge, which are designed to detect problems such as improper alignment of decks.

One of those switches may have detected an issue and stopped the span from closing. Sometimes the buildup of ice and snow can cause decks to become misaligned.

The Casco Bay Bridge spans the Fore River and connects the cities of Portland and South Portland.


Three arrested in connection with car burglaries and theft

Two Maine men and a 17-year-old are facing charges in connection to reports of car burglaries and theft.

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