Police: Selectman bought stolen goods with drugs

York County sheriff’s deputies arrested an Arundel selectman Friday, charging him with fencing stolen property, sometimes paying burglars with drugs.

Deputies charged Byron Kindley, 63, with receiving stolen property and drug trafficking after they searched the Valero gas station and convenience store that Kindley owns on Route 111.

Deputies also charged Kindley’s girlfriend, Tina Gagne, 46, with drug trafficking, said Sheriff Maurice Ouellette. Police seized $15,000 worth of stolen merchandise, he said.

Kindley and Gagne live in an apartment above the gas station.

Items taken during daytime burglaries, including jewelry, flat-screen televisions and other electronics, were given to Kindley in exchange for cash or the prescription painkiller Vicodin, Ouellette said.

Ouellette said some of the stolen items were taken to Portland for resale. He said Kindley’s role in town government makes the case more serious.

“When people run for elective office, people put their trust in them,, and when you turn around and violate the public trust, that kind of steps it up a notch,” Ouellette said.

Kindley is free on $1,500 bail. His term as a selectman expires in 2012.


Hospital accepting blame for patient’s fatal overdose

Mayo Regional Hospital is taking blame for the overdose death of a man who went to the emergency room suffering from an allergic reaction.

The middle-aged man, whose name the hospital did not release, died after emergency room workers gave an overdose of a medication aimed at helping the man, who was suffering symptoms of anaphylaxis. The man arrived at the hospital’s emergency room on the night of June 4.

Ralph Gabarro, Mayo’s chief executive officer, told the Bangor Daily News that the hospital was taking full responsibility for the man’s death. He called it “nothing short of a tragedy.”


Navy plans to give boost to first post-closure air show

The first air show in Brunswick after the town’s Navy base closes is getting a boost from the Navy, which will celebrate the 100th anniversary of naval aviation in 2011.

The Midcoast Regional Redevelopment Authority announced previously that the Navy Blue Angels flight demonstration team will headline the event next year.

Now, the Navy has designated the event as one of only 32 “Tier 1” events to commemorate the 100th anniversary.

In the past, the event was known as the Great State of Maine Air Show. Now, it’s being used to showcase the base for businesses, and will be called the Great State of Maine Air Show & Business Aviation Expo.

The expo will showcase Brunswick Landing to the business aviation community.

The base is due to close next year.


Two indicted in connection with Parsonsfield car fire

A grand jury in York County has indicted two men in connection with a car fire in March.

Joseph R. Fournier, 28, of Porter faces a charge of arson. He is accused of setting fire to a man’s car in Parsonsfield on March 17.

Kevin A. Monroe, 30, of Kennebunk faces a charge of hindering apprehension.

He is accused of driving Fournier to his house to get an accelerant, then back to the victim’s house in Parsonsfield, where the fire was set.

Fournier set fire to the Toyota Camry after a argument with its owner, according to the state Fire Marshal’s Office.


PUC chairwoman planning to step down next month

Public Utilities Commission Chairwoman Sharon Reishus will step down next month after a busy two-year period that included oversight of FairPoint Communications’ troubled performance and approval of Central Maine Power Co.’s $1.4 billion power grid upgrade.

Gov. John Baldacci said “Maine has been well-served” during the tenure of Reishus, who has served on the PUC since 2003.

She was appointed chairwoman in May 2008.

Reishus will step down on July 12. Commissioner Jack Cashman will be acting chairman.

Baldacci says he intends to nominate a new commissioner for consideration by the Legislature during a special confirmation session this summer.

State resource management chief leaving for federal job

Biologist Ken Elowe, longtime director of the Maine Bureau of Resource Management, is leaving his post with the Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife to work for the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service in Massachusetts.

Elowe, a 22-year veteran of the department, took the position as assistant regional director of science applications in the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service’s Region 5 headquarters in Hadley, Mass.

Elowe was responsible for implementing several fish and wildlife programs in Maine. In his new role, Elowe will work on strategic habitat conservation, among other tasks.


Forecasters confirm reports of twisters in Maine, N.H.

The National Weather Service says it has confirmed preliminary findings that two twisters touched down June 5 in Maine and New Hampshire.

They said a tornado with an estimated maximum wind speed of 90 mph touched down in Paris in western Maine and went more than four miles through Oxford and Hebron. A camper was flipped and hundreds of trees were uprooted along a path that went mostly through woods.

Forecasters said another tornado, with wind speeds of 60 to 70 mph, touched down briefly in Gorham, N.H., uprooting several trees and damaging two homes.

A third tornado touched down in Craftsbury, Vt., causing roof damage. Forecasters said there was another funnel cloud near Auburn, Maine, but it didn’t touch down.


Police turnover leads town to hire deputies instead

Bethel is getting rid of its police department. Beginning July 1, the Oxford County Sheriff’s Office will patrol the town.

On Tuesday, Bethel voters opted to hire the deputies rather than rely on their own department. Town Manager Jim Doar said it has been a challenge to keep qualified officers on the local force.

The town has one full-time and several part-time officers. Three sheriff’s deputies will be assigned to the Bethel area.


Ex-mailman gets probation for stealing cash from letters

A former letter carrier who admitted to stealing cash from cards and letters on his route in Orono won’t be going to jail.

Lawrence A. Custis, 56, of Lincoln was sentenced in U.S. District Court in Bangor on Thursday to three years probation. In court, He apologized for betraying the trust of his family, his customers and the Postal Service.

Custis was ordered to pay a fine of $2,150 and $430 in restitution.

Custis admitted taking money from the mail from December 2006 to April 2007.

The Bangor Daily News said he could have been sentenced to five years in prison.