Judge lowers bail for man charged in Freeport fire

Bail was lowered Wednesday for a man charged with arson in connection with a fire at a Freeport business.

Christopher Veysey, 21, made his first court appearance before Judge Wayne Douglas. The judge set bail at $50,000 property or $25,000 cash, as agreed upon by Assistant District Attorney Jennifer Ackerman and Sarah Churchill, who served as Veysey’s lawyer for the day. The bail conditions would bar Veysey from using or having alcohol, drugs or incendiary devices and from being at Bob Miles & Sons, the Freeport business damaged in Monday’s fire.

Veysey, most recently of New Gloucester, was arrested Tuesday while he was waiting in line for a Greyhound bus bound for South Carolina. He had been held on bail of $300,060.

The fire at the plumbing business caused an estimated $700,000 damage.


OSHA proposes $17,000 fine  after 2 died in sewage tank

Federal officials are proposing nearly $17,000 in penalties following the death of two men working in a sewage tank in Kennebunkport.

The Occupational Safety and Health Administration cited the employer for four safety violations, including failure to ventilate the area where the men were working and failing to test the air quality before and during the work. OSHA also said there was no system in place for an emergency rescue for the employees of Stevens Electric & Pump Service, a Monmouth company that was doing work at a motel, the Lodge at Turbats Creek.

Winfield Studley, 58, of Windsor and Richard Kemp, 70, of Monmouth died from inhalation of sewer gases last month while working on a sewer pump.


Honor-system farm stand uses camera to catch thief

A Troy farmer frustrated with repeated cash thefts from her honor-system farm stand has decided to take matters into her own hands.

Joyce Benson said she first started noticing the thefts from the cash box at her unstaffed roadside stand last year.

She told WCSH-TV that she has lost about $1,000 in all.

She bought a small camera to monitor the stand and, sure enough, caught someone.

Benson gave the evidence to the Waldo County Sheriff’s Office, who recognized the person in the image and charged 19-year-old Dakota Durand with theft by unauthorized taking.


Pro-racino camp will stop using Lithgow library image

Officials in Augusta are objecting to an image of the city’s library being used in pro-racino campaign materials.

Maine voters head to the polls Nov. 8 for a referendum on whether to allow two racetrack casinos in the state.

Lithgow Public Library Director Elizabeth Pohl said the campaign brochure makes it appear as if the library endorses expanded gambling.

Pohl told the Morning Sentinel that the library does not endorse the referendum and the image was used without permission.

There is also concern that the image makes it appear as if the library would benefit from a racino – also not true.

A spokeswoman for the Yes on 2 campaign said it will stop using the image.

Former bookkeeper admits stealing, will repay $70,000

A former bookkeeper at an Augusta dental office has pleaded guilty to embezzling about $120,000 in cash from the practice.

Prosecutors said Celine Davis, 47, of Lewiston was sentenced Tuesday to five years in jail with all but six months suspended, if she pays back part of the money she stole.

Attorneys told a judge in Kennebec County Superior Court that Davis is arranging to repay $70,000 from her retirement funds.

Interior secretary applauds two Maine programs in report

U.S. Interior Secretary Ken Salazar is citing two Maine programs in a 50-state report outlining some of the country’s best ways to reconnect Americans to the natural world.

The first is designed to restore hundreds of miles of migration and spawning habitat for sea-run fish along the Penobscot River and its tributaries.

The second, called Keeping Maine’s Forests, is a partnership of forest landowners, recreationists, conservation and environmental organizations and government that promotes forest stewardship.


Gambling board OKs release of casino investors’ names

The state Gambling Control Board has ruled that releasing the names of individual investors behind a casino under construction in Oxford would not be a violation of trade secrets or of the owners’ privacy.
Black Bear Development is the group of investors behind the casino on Route 26.

The control board ruled Tuesday that the names as well as their percentage of ownership could be made public, despite the objections of lawyers for Black Bear, who claimed disclosing the information would violate privacy.

The board’s decision is effective Nov. 8, giving Black Bear time to appeal the decision in court.


Local boy, 8, dies of injuries from car accident in August

Authorities said an 8-year-old Bethel boy has died of injuries he suffered in a car crash in August.

A friend of the family told the Sun Journal that Matthew Thurston died Monday at the Barbara Bush Children’s Hospital in Portland after spending the past two months at the facility.

Police say the third-grader was involved in a car crash with his mother, Jessica Thurston, on Aug. 12 on Route 26 in Oxford. He was transported by helicopter to Maine Medical Center.

Thurston was treated and released from a hospital.

Matthew was a student at Crescent Park Elementary School.

Matthew’s grandmother Merilee Thurston said her grandson enjoyed riding bicycles, playing soccer and fishing.

– From staff and news services