Man found on flats drowned; disease a factor, police say

Authorities have identified the body of the man who was found Saturday on clam flats in Phippsburg as Andrew Tomko, 49, of Oakland.

Police say an autopsy has determined that the 30-year employee of Bath Iron Works drowned, with severe coronary artery disease contributing to his death.

His body was discovered by a clam digger near Mill Dam, off Basin Road. Phippsburg Police Chief John Skroski said Tomko had set up a camp nearby.

The Times Record of Brunswick reported that police do not think the death is suspicious.



Mother accused of leaving baby in 117-degree car

A Maine woman who police say left her 6-month-old baby in a hot car while she went shopping in Portsmouth has been charged with child endangerment.

The Portsmouth Herald reported that Renee Ramsey, 32, of Wells was arrested Saturday after an officer broke one of the car’s windows to remove the baby, who was later released to a relative after being examined at the hospital.

The temperature outdoors was 81 degrees, and officers measured the temperature in the car at 117 degrees.

Police said they don’t know how long the baby was in the car, but they believe Ramsey parked at the shopping center 15 minutes before the child was removed. She returned to her car about 15 minutes after that.



Board tweaks proposal for regulating turbine noise

Maine’s Board of Environmental Protection on Monday changed proposed rules aimed at reducing noise produced by wind turbines. It will take public comment on them until Aug. 29 before deciding whether to adopt the changes.

Recommendations that had been proposed to the board by the state Department of Environmental Protection would allow turbines to produce as much as 55 decibels during the day, and either 45 or 42 decibels at night. The board kept the 55-decibel daytime standard and chose the 42-decibel nighttime alternative.

Activists have insisted that poorly located wind farms threaten the state’s public health and natural beauty. The Bangor Daily News said the Friends of Maine’s Mountains group believes a 35-decibel nighttime level is more appropriate.

Until now, the DEP has applied a decades-old noise standard to wind energy projects. Critics of large-scale wind projects say the state needs rules specific to the unique characteristics of wind turbines. After gathering enough petition signatures, Friends of Maine’s Mountains filed paperwork to force the board to begin the rule-making process to address wind turbine noise.


Nearly 200 wind turbines operate in Maine. Many more are in the permitting process. The rules are to be posted online at


Local resident accused of sexual contact with child

Police have arrested a Bath man on felony sex charges, Police Chief Michael Field said Monday.

Brian Lewis, 65, has been charged with unlawful sexual contact and visual sexual aggression against a child younger than 12. Each charge carries a maximum of five years in prison and a $5,000 fine.

Field said his department’s investigation began July 1 after a parent alleged that Lewis exposed himself to their son and touched him inappropriately. The victim was not a member of Lewis’s family.


Lewis, who is free on bail, is scheduled to appear in West Bath District Court on Oct. 11.


Police: No charges likely in Baxter Boulevard stabbing

Police say there probably will be no charges in a stabbing that happened during the weekend.

Police were called to 120 Baxter Blvd. at 10:30 p.m. Saturday for a report of a stabbing and found a 29-year-old man in the shower, bleeding from a stomach wound. Rescue workers took the man, whose condition was deteriorating, to the hospital, where he was stabilized.

The man told police that he and another resident, who is 54, had been pretending to fence with kitchen knives when he was accidentally stabbed, police said. Police got conflicting stories from other adults, including that the men were not playing but really fighting.


Police decided not to charge anyone in the incident.


Last month wettest July on record in northern Maine

Last month has gone down as the wettest July on record in northern Maine.

The National Weather Service says Caribou got 7.93 inches of rain last month, breaking the old record of 6.83 inches, set in 1957. June was also a record-setter, with 9.03 inches.

Meteorologists say there was a stark difference in July’s rainfall between northern Maine and the rest of the state because of an unusually strong upper-level jet stream separating hot air to the south from cooler air to the north.


By comparison, Bangor had 2.9 inches of rain for the month, which is about 35 percent below normal.


Scarborough woman fourth in wheelchair competition

A Scarborough woman has placed fourth in the 2012 Ms. Wheelchair America contest.

Monica Quimby, 24, represented Maine in Saturday’s contest in Grand Rapids, Mich., where 26 contestants competed for the title.

Paralyzed in a 2007 ski accident, Quimby is an adjunct professor at Southern Maine Community College. She is originally from Turner.


She told the Sun Journal of Lewiston that her platform at the contest was about the importance of setting goals in education, career, advocacy and independence.


Habitat, agency start work on three affordable homes

Habitat for Humanity/7 Rivers Maine and the Greater Brunswick Housing Corp. began construction Monday on three homes designed to meet the needs of the region’s affordable housing market.

Peggy Siegle, director of development for Habitat, said one three-bedroom home and one condominium duplex will be built at Cushing and Cumberland streets, near Brunswick’s downtown.

Construction is expected to take six to eight months.



College of the Atlantic, UMaine on ‘green honor roll’

Two colleges in Maine have been named to the Princeton Review’s “green honor roll.”

The Princeton Review released its fourth annual green ratings of colleges last week, measuring how environmentally friendly they are. Only 16 of the 768 institutions that were looked at received the highest rating, including the University of Maine and College of the Atlantic in Bar Harbor.

UMaine was cited for offering free shuttle service and free bicycles. It was also recognized for its recycling and sustainability programs and commitment to green buildings.

The College of the Atlantic was lauded for its carbon-neutral energy commitment and its organic food.



Michaud seeks feedback from Maine manufacturers

U.S. Rep. Mike Michaud is seeking input from manufacturers in Maine.

Michaud has created an online survey to find out why businesses chose to make their products in Maine and what type of federal policy changes they’d like to see to help them succeed. The survey can be found on Michaud’s website,

Michaud said he’ll use the survey results to help him work with colleagues in Congress to draft legislation aimed at helping manufacturers.


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