Thursday, May 23, 2013
From staff and news services
Couple pleads not guilty to letting minors have alcohol
The Falmouth couple accused of hosting a party in June at which minors drank alcohol have pleaded not guilty.
Barry and Paula Spencer were scheduled to be arraigned Thursday in Cumberland County Unified Criminal Court. Their lawyers entered their not-guilty pleas by letter in advance so they were not required to be in court.
Each one is charged with nine counts of allowing a minor to possess or consume alcohol. They were indicted last month in connection with a party at their home on June 16. Their lawyers have said the party started as a small gathering but grew to nearly 100 people as students, some from other towns, joined it.
Police said no responsible homeowner could have been unaware of what was happening.
City puts out its annual call for holiday tree submissions
City officials are searching for the perfect evergreen tree to display in Monument Square for the holidays.
The tree should be about 40 to 60 feet tall and well-shaped so it can be decorated with hundreds of LED lights, said Jeff Tarling, the city's arborist. The tree must be cut down and installed in time for the city's annual tree-lighting ceremony Nov. 23.
"Each year we look for a stately and well-rounded tree within 10 miles of Portland that a resident needs to have taken down," Tarling said. "If selected, the tree will be cut down and transported downtown at no cost to the homeowner."
Anyone interested in donating a tree should send a photo, address and phone number to email@example.com or to Portland's Downtown District, 549 Congress St., Portland, ME 04101.
Mainer starting second half of visits to 500 poet graves
The founder of the Dead Poets Society of America is halfway to his goal of visiting the gravesites of 500 bards.
Walter Skold on Thursday was visiting the gravesite of Henry Wadsworth Longfellow's brother Samuel at Portland's Western Cemetery. Skold said Samuel Longfellow was a hymn writer, pastor and poet.
It was to be his 251st burial plot visit, marking the kickoff of events leading to Dead Poets Remembrance Day on Sunday.
Skold, who's from Freeport, pushed for a national holiday after he discovered that many graves of the nation's literary forebears have been neglected.
Highlights this year will include a tribute to the poetry of John Updike and a special midnight reading of "The Raven" at Poe Corner in Boston, Edgar Allan Poe's hometown.
Boat returning passengers to cruise ship runs aground
The U.S. Coast Guard is investigating why a vessel carrying 93 passengers to a cruise ship ran aground Thursday night, stranding the passengers on a remote shoal off Bar Harbor.
The vessel, known as a tender, was transporting passengers from Bar Harbor to the Celebrity Summit, which arrived Thursday morning and was anchored offshore.
The tender ran aground at low tide in shallow water between Bar Island and Porcupine Island. The crew of a local whale watch boat was able to rescue the passengers and two crew members. No injuries were reported.
Man gets 30 years in prison for beating father to death
A man who beat his father to death has been sent to prison for 30 years.
Angelo Licata, who lived in the central Maine town of Detroit, was sentenced Wednesday in Somerset County Superior Court. He had pleaded guilty to killing Alfred Licata, 63, in his home in Cambridge in July 2011. Police said they found the victim's body on his lawn, and that he appeared to have suffered head injuries.
Defense lawyers said the younger man suffered from mental illness and lashed out after years of abuse at the hands of his father. WABI-TV reported that Angelo Licata apologized to his mother, saying it was "self-defense that went too far."
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