News from February 5, 2014

February 6

Hagel orders military morals probe to add urgency

The steady drumbeat of one military ethics scandal after another has caused many to conclude that the misbehavior reflects more than routine lapses.

February 5

Celtics win 2nd straight behind 36 points from Jeff Green

Boston grabs a rare road win, beating Philadelphia 114-108.

February 5

Republican leaders struggle to gain support for debt limit hike

House Republicans conclude two top ideas won’t work, but consider adding a repeal of military pension cuts.

February 5

More Olympic-linked furor over Russia anti-gay law

Protesters around the world targeted major Olympic sponsors Wednesday, urging them to speak out just ahead of the Winter Games.

February 5

Texas carries out rare execution of a woman

Suzanne Basso, 59, lured a mentally impaired man to Texas, took over his Social Security payments and killed him.

February 5

Strange noises blamed on rare ‘frost quakes’ in Missouri

The phenomenon occurs when moisture in the ground suddenly freezes and expands, breaking soil or bedrock and sounding like a sonic boom.

February 5

Firefighters battle house fire in Bridgton

The residence is located off Route 302, and there were no immediate reports of injuries.

February 5

Would-be burglar apparently scared off by singing fish in Minnesota

The intruder leaves the Hooked on Fishing bait shop without taking anything, presumably when Billy Bass started singing ‘Take Me to the River.’

February 5

U.S. teen skier Mikaela Shiffrin is breakout star for Olympics

Last year, at 17, she became the youngest female world ski champion since 1985 and the youngest American ever to hold a world title.

February 5

Probe into East Fryeburg burglaries continues after one arrest

Police say they aren’t certain the suspect whom they have charged acted alone.

February 6

Former Red Sox star Curt Schilling says he has cancer

The man who helped break the Red Sox' World Series curse takes a leave of absence from ESPN.

February 5

Slideshow: Photographers, readers take shots at Maine storm

To participate, send photos to online@pressherald.com. Include your name and town, and we may use them in the online slideshow.

February 5

New England power plant closings pinch supply

The retirement of several local power plants is reducing supply and driving up prices, the region’s electric grid operator says.

February 5

Maine’s Wescott has no regrets after backcountry injury costs him Olympics

The gold-medalist didn’t see trouble ahead while zooming down a steep slope for a movie scene he was filming.

February 6

Augusta man pleads not guilty to murdering girlfriend Video clip included

Justin Pillsbury is accused of stabbing Jillian Jones to death in their apartment.

February 5

Climate changes could have spelled demise of mammoths

New research focused on the Northeast, including Maine, challenges the notion that it was the arrival of hungry humans that led to the extinction of massive mammals.

February 9

Explore Libra Foundations annual grant awards: Interactive

The foundation has awarded about $180 million in grants to scores of Maine organizations since it was created in 1989.

February 5

Clay Aiken to run for Congress in North Carolina

The entertainer says he empathizes with those struggling in the congressional district where he lives, and plans to run as a Democrat.

February 5

Prosecutor says Maine couple paid to slash tires of accuser

Court documents lay out allegations against Carole and Marshall Swan that prosecutors say should influence their sentencing on federal extortion charges.

February 5

Sabattus man charged in two Maine bank robberies

Police in Lewiston also suspect Brent Roaix in another robbery last month.

February 5

NY case against Biden’s niece on track to be dropped

Caroline Biden has been in inpatient treatment for anger problems since her Sept. 17 arrest.

February 5

Indiana man glad of son’s return after 18 years

He says he wants to also see his other son and daughter and hopes they know he never gave up on finding them.

February 6

Man-in-underwear statue at Mass. college causes stir

The statue of a ‘schlumpy guy’ in an eyes closed, zombie-like trance is part of an exhibit at the Wellesley College museum.

February 5

Heart defect killed Dartmouth skier at Vermont race

Torin Tucker, a junior from Sun Valley, Idaho, died while competing at a cross country skiing marathon on Saturday.

February 5

U.N.: ‘Unspeakable suffering’ for Syria’s children

While Assad’s forces have used children as human shields in the fighting, a U.N. report also blasts rebels for ‘recruitment and use of children both in combat and support roles.’

February 5

Putin, recalling Boston bombers, wants safe Olympics

The Chechen brothers accused of the 2013 Boston attacks hailed from just a few hundred miles away from Sochi.

February 5

Maine snowfall Feb. 5, 2014: SnowTrac

Unofficial snowfall amounts provided by the Gray and Caribou offices of the National Weather Service.

February 14

Maine snowfall Feb. 13-14, 2014: SnowTrac



February 5

Maine’s WEX Inc. exceeds earnings expectations for quarter

Net income totaled $44.1 million at the end of 2013, and the company is seeking more acquisitions.

February 5

Auburn man pleads guilty in robbery spree

Scott Demmon may serve up to 10 years for five robberies.

February 5

Feature obituary: Brian Babb, 2006 Windham High School grad passionate about racing, dies at age 25

He raced at Beech Ridge Motor Speedway in Scarborough.

February 6

U.N. harshly criticizes Vatican over child abuse, stances against homosexuality and abortion

The Holy See objects to what it considers the United Nation’s attempt to interfere with church teachings.

February 5

Shaun White withdraws from Olympic slopestyle

Concerns about the risk of injury led White to forgo the new snowboarding event.

February 5

Probe into Philip Seymour Hoffman’s death leads to four arrests

Investigators are culling evidence obtained during the arrests of four people on drug charges.

February 5

CVS Caremark to stop selling tobacco products

The nation’s second-largest drugstore chain says it will phase out cigarettes, cigars and chewing tobacco by Oct. 1.

February 6

Snowstorm adds to Portland’s above-average snow totals Several photos included in this story

The daylong storm slows commutes, as more than 8 inches blankets much of southern and western Maine.

February 5

Exam cheating scandal hits Navy nuclear force

The implicated sailors are accused of cheating on written tests they must pass to be certified as instructors at a nuclear propulsion school at Charleston, S.C.

February 5

Local & State Disptaches

Man rushed to hospital after fall from bridge / Baby sitter and 4-year-old escape fast-spreading fire / Fryeburg man charged with burglary, arson other crimes … and more news from around the state.

February 5

Maine court: Public has no right to use Kennebunkport beach

The town is disappointed, calling the decision a ‘radical departure’ from traditional policies on beach access for the public.

February 5

Bill Nemitz: LePage’s student food veto hard to stomach

The money is there, right now, to feed every last struggling student, but LePage's war on the the poor apparently takes precedent.

February 5

Body found in Old Orchard Beach was that of Portland man

His death has been ruled a suicide, a state police spokesman says.

February 5

Lawmakers to scale back proposal to expand Maine’s veterans court

The Judge who presides over the pilot program expresses reservations about expanding until the current program reaches capacity.

February 5

Sens. Collins, King react to passage of long-delayed farm bill

King sees pluses for Maine farmers but is disappointed in food-stamp cut; Collins doesn't like late changes pertaining to the dairy industry.

February 5

Budget office: Millions to quit work or cut hours under health law

The estimated reduction, equivalent to 2.5 million jobs over a decade, ignites a fierce political debate on Obamacare’s impact.

February 5

Bill to beef up Maine restaurant inspections on hold for talks

A state restaurant industry group is a leading opponent, and will be involved in compromise talks

February 5

NYPD seeking source of actor Hoffman’s heroin

Tests show the absence of a powerful additive.