November 15, 2013

Letters to the editor: I-295 crash scenario hard to swallow

A reader wonders how anyone could believe that a driver could be unaware of sideswiping another vehicle.

Let’s see if we have the sequence of events on the I-295 crash correctly laid out (“Driver in I-295 accident had twice before sideswiped cars, police records show,” Nov. 9).

click image to enlarge

Casey Larcombe and his fiancee, Kathryn LePage, await results of X-rays on Larcombe’s spine at Maine Medical Center on Nov. 7. A reader wonders how anyone can believe that the driver who allegedly triggered a crash involving Larcombe on Nov. 6 was unaware that she’d hit his car.

2013 File Photo/Derek Davis

1. Julie Caton (with a history of driving offenses) sideswiped a family in the left lane of 295, sending them into the median and then end over end, police say.

2. Caton’s own bumper was ripped off her car during the accident.

3. Caton sped away, apparently unaware that she had allegedly caused a horrific accident that almost cost an entire family their lives.

3. Multiple witnesses and good Samaritans stopped to help, or followed Caton to make sure she did not get away.

4. When the police finally got around to showing up at Caton’s house, they just issued her misdemeanor summonses for leaving the scene and failing to report a crash.

5. When asked, Caton blamed the other driver for driving too slowly in the left lane.

6. And at this point, no other charges have been filed against her.

How could anyone believe that she was unaware that she sped around another car on the right, impacted that other car, lost her bumper and never looked in the rearview mirror to see a car going end over end behind her? Then continued on without a care in the world!

Even if that were all true, she is an incompetent driver, as she apparently does not posses a sense of sight, sound, touch or the common sense to put them all together.

What does a driver have to do to get a more serious charge in this state or finally lose their license? Sounds like the Larcombe family will be waiting a while for an apology.

Lincoln Paetow

Topsham

Town’s biased assessments to finally get public scrutiny

Scarborough residents should pay particular attention to the goings-on at Town Hall on Nov. 26. That’s when the Board of Assessment Review will finally, in public, deliberate on the numerous issues of tax discrimination in Scarborough – discrimination affecting every taxpayer in Scarborough.

Oct. 15 testimony, taken under oath, has already confirmed that more than 40 percent of all homeowners throughout Scarborough are grossly assessed outside the state of Maine’s maximum guidelines of 90 percent to 110 percent of market value. That’s discrimination.

When a land lot is assessed a value of more than $1 million and the abutting lot, of comparable size, is assessed a value of $14,000, that’s discrimination.

When everyone in Scarborough, other than the actual owner of a lot, is footing the tax bill for that owner’s undervalued million-dollar lot, that’s discrimination.

When a tax assessor testifies that the Great Recession did not have any impact on property values whatsoever in any area of Scarborough and uses that as a rationale to justify the use of 6- to 8-year-old property sales to target individuals – that’s discrimination. These are just a few of the undisputed facts. We have a big problem in Scarborough.

This board and the new Town Council may not realize it, but they have the opportunity to address these and numerous other discriminatory practices employed in Scarborough. Public disclosure of homeowners harmed, from all walks of life in Scarborough, would encourage responsiveness and transparency in Scarborough’s broken government.

Whether it be this board, the Maine Superior Court or our Town Council that is forced to act, every Scarborough taxpayer will be very appreciative. The question is, who will step up?

Don Petrin

Scarborough

Congin School program brings kids, vets together

I would like to take this time to thank all the people involved with the Congin School Veterans Day special program.

A big “thank you” to all the veterans who were there. This was such a great teaching moment for the children. They got to actually see and speak to our fine veterans.

One veteran brought a uniform for “show and tell.” The students made flags and gave them to the veterans.

Many of the veterans had grandchildren in the audience. Some were actively still serving our country and had children in the audience. My nephew got to meet a veteran cousin for the first time. It made him proud.

I cannot begin to tell you how moved I was. I went to school with a lot of the veterans, and I was ever so proud of all of them. I am also married to one.

I’m sad and embarrassed to admit that over time, I have become removed somehow. Good thing my parents and grandparents or aunts and uncles aren’t alive to hear me say this! Because of this wonderful program, I assure you it won’t happen again.

Principal Janet Crawford and Dr. Marc Gousse, superintendent of Westbrook Schools, offered messages that were moving and age-appropriate for the children.

Their messages were a good reminder for both young and old that we are here and live in this great country because of those who served and risked their lives for us. May we never forget it or take it for granted.

Yvonne Graffam

Gorham

Big mistake in big ad sign of weak grasp of grammar

The full-page ad on the back of the Nov. 12 paper grabbed my attention. It was a color ad for MaineJobs/Monster. In big letters, it said, “Somewhere in a pile of resumes are 52 people that can manage the front desk. And one that could manage the company.”

Big ad, costs big money, has big grammar mistake – times two! I was always taught “people who” and “things or animals that.” No wonder kids can’t use proper grammar – even big companies publishing in big newspapers can’t, either!

Sorry for the rant, but doesn’t anyone care about stuff like this anymore?

Kathie McCarthy

Westbrook

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