Cohen to address graduates of UMaine School of Law

Former U.S. Secretary of Defense William Cohen will give the keynote address at the University of Maine School of Law’s 2010 commencement ceremony at 10 a.m. Saturday in Merrill Auditorium.

Cohen, a Republican, served as secretary of defense under Democratic President Bill Clinton from 1997 to 2001. The Bangor native also was Maine’s U.S. senator from 1979 to 1997 and congressman from 1973 to 1979.

He currently heads the Cohen Group, a Washington, D.C., firm that provides business consulting services and advice on tactical and strategic opportunities throughout the world.

At Saturday’s ceremony, 82 students will receive law degrees and Margaret Kravchuk, U.S. magistrate judge in Bangor, will receive the law school faculty’s Distinguished Alumna Award.


Police warning residents of offers to install alarms

Portland police are warning residents of the Nason’s Corner neighborhood to be wary of anyone offering to install an alarm in their home.

Last week, two homes on Holm Avenue were burglarized. They were not occupied.

Just three weeks before the break-ins, Lt. Gary Rogers said a white male with a shaved head was seen on Holm Avenue. He was carrying a clipboard and wearing a jacket with an alarm company logo on it.

He offered to install an alarm in one resident’s home. Similar incidents have been reported in other neighborhoods. Police are encouraging residents to report such suspicious activity by calling 874-8575.


Police ask for public’s help to find suspect in burglary

The Portland Police Department is asking for the public’s help in locating 23-year-old Jeremy Ferrar of Portland.

He is wanted in connection with a burglary that took place Monday at an elderly woman’s house on Deerfield Road.

Lt. Robert Ridge said Ferrar verbally threatened the woman when she confronted him, but no physical assault occurred.

Portland police plan to charge Ferrar with burglary, robbery, and aggravated theft.

He is also wanted on an outstanding warrant from Portland police for violation of bail conditions, and warrants out of Sanford for theft and possession of scheduled drugs.

Anyone with information about where he might be should call the Portland Police Department at 874-8575.


Appleton man fined $400 for conduct at LURC hearing

An Appleton man was found guilty Wednesday afternoon of resisting arrest and disorderly conduct during the Land Use Regulation Commission’s hearing last year on the Plum Creek development plan.

Christian “Will” Neils, 33, was fined $400 for the offenses.

Neils also was found not guilty of carrying a dangerous weapon, a knife.

The jury of eight men and four women deliberated more than four hours before delivering the verdict.

During his testimony, Neils said he was acting as a police liaison for the protesters at the meeting. He testified that he approached officers as the protest began to introduce himself and explain his role.


Alfond Youth Center benefit raises more than $100,000

The Alfond Youth Center’s 11th annual Appeal Awards Dinner on Wednesday night raised more than $100,000 to help underprivileged children attend summer camp, enrichment programs and the center’s after-school program.

With a $200,000 goal, the appeals kickoff got a big boost from the Harold Alfond Foundation.

Gregory Powell, chairman for the foundation’s board of trustees, announced that the foundation would match every dollar raised, up to $100,000, and that a bonus would be given if that $100,000 is reached.

Gov. John E. Baldacci was inducted into the Alfond Center’s Inspirational Hall of Fame. It was the first time a governor has been honored.


Sleeping man drives car into home, taking out porch

Police in Pittsfield say a driver who’d fallen asleep at the wheel drove his car into a 123-year-old Victorian house, taking out two walls and a porch.

The home’s owners, Peter and Danna Hartel, were not injured. They were asleep when the car missed a curve and struck the house at 50 or 60 mph.

The Bangor Daily News says the driver, 42-year-old Kenneth Curtis of Newport, cut his head and was taken to a local hospital. Police say he was charged with having illegally attached plates and no insurance.

Peter Hartel says it sounded like an earthquake or explosion when the car, a 2000 Kia, hit his home.


Troopers to escort windmills from Searsport to Eustis

Between now and the third week in July, state police will occasionally escort a series of oversized tractor-trailers carrying giant wind turbine parts from Searsport to Eustis.

“We want to alert the motoring public that we have started the windmill escorts,” Maine State Police Sgt. David Tripp said. “They’ll run from Searsport to Kibby Mountain, which is in Eustis.”

The Kibby Mountain wind power project is being built by TransCanada in remote Franklin County.

Locally, the tractor trailers will travel Route 3 to the Augusta bypass, then onto Route 104 to Drummond Road, then to Middle Road, where the trucks will pick up Route 23 to Route 11 through Oakland. The route continues back onto Route 23 to Route 139 to Route 2 in Norridgewock, then onto Route 27.

Four groups won’t endorse alternative to Richardson

Two law enforcement unions representing 1,300 workers statewide do not plan to endorse another candidate for governor after Democrat John Richardson dropped out of the race, their spokesmen said Tuesday.

Two other groups, representing iron workers, plumbers and pipefitters, say they, too, are unlikely to jump in again before the primary.

Before he dropped out of the race in April, Richardson, a lawyer and former House speaker, touted endorsements from the four groups as a show of strength. He left the race when staff at the state Commission on Governmental Ethics and Election Practices found that campaign volunteers apparently had violated state law while trying to gather $5 checks as part of the Clean Election program.


‘Free fishing’ days will be June 5-6, not May 29-30

Maine’s free fishing weekend is officially June 5 and 6. However, because of a misprint in the state fishing law book that listed May 29 and 30, fishermen need to be wary.

Those fishing Memorial Day weekend without a license could be summonsed for breaking the law, despite the fact those two days are listed as “free fishing” days.

The Maine Warden Service will not necessarily let fishermen who are fishing without a license on Memorial Day weekend off without a summons, according to Maj. Greg Sanborn with the service.

“The Warden Service will use appropriate discretion given the facts at hand,” said Sanborn in Augusta.

Sanborn said that all rules listed in the new fishing law book that came out this year are not binding, and anglers should be wary of the misprint that had the wrong date.

State law set by the Legislature lists only a formula to determine when Maine’s free fishing weekends will be held, not a date.

“We have to follow the law, and the law to us is Title 12,” Sanborn said. “(The date) was an error. Staff does (the law book).”

 Two dam-removal projects to restore habitat get grants

Two projects to remove dams from Maine rivers received grants from the American Rivers conservation organization and the U.S. Commerce Department’s National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration Restoration Program.

They are:

$100,000 for the removal of the Lower Montsweag Brook Dam near Wiscasset and Woolwich by the Chewonki Foundation, which will open three miles of fish passage and restore 20 acres of riverside habitat currently flooded by the dam.

$65,000 to the Maine Council of the Atlantic Salmon to remove the West Winterport Dam on Marsh Stream, a Penobscot River tributary, in Winterport and Frankfort, which will open up 4.5 miles of the stream and restore 20 miles of river habitat.




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