Police acquire heavy duty armored rescue vehicle

The Portland Police Department has acquired a state of the art armored rescue vehicle, capable of withstanding fire from high caliber assault weapons.

Police Chief Michael Sauschuck said the Bearcat armored truck will replace a 1981 military surplus armored personnel carrier — called the Peacekeeper.

In addition to improving the safety of officers and civilians caught in a dangerous situation, the Bearcat offers a thermal imaging system capable of detecting chemical, biological and radioactive material as well as explosives.

Sauschuck said the Peacekeeper’s armor plating doesn’t protect against weapons and ammunition available to the public.

Nicole Clegg, the city of Portland’s spokeswoman, said the police department purchased the Bearcat from Lenco Armored Vehicles in Pittsfield, Mass.

Clegg said the truck was purchased with a $270,000 Port Security Grant from the Federal Emergency Management Agency.


Ormsby gets three life sentences in killing of two men, boy

A Maine man convicted of killing two adults and a 10-year-old boy is going to prison for life.

Thayne Ormsby was given three life sentences — one for each murder conviction — Thursday in Aroostook County Superior Court in Houlton. The judge added a 15-year sentence on top of the life sentences for Ormsby’s arson conviction.

Ormsby was convicted in April in the 2010 stabbing deaths of 55-year-old Jeffrey Ryan, his 10-year-old son Jesse, and family friend Jason Dehahn at Ryan’s home in Amity. The jury rejected Ormsby’s insanity defense.

Ormsby said he wanted to kill the elder Ryan because he thought the man was a drug dealer, and he killed Dehahn and the boy to eliminate potential witnesses.


Journey into Writing contest gives three students $2,500 each

It pays to write well.

Just ask Maine high school students Amanda Dickey, Brianna Housman and Gaelyn Lindauer. Each student received a check for $2,500 Thursday for their winning entries in the Maine Community College System’s A Journey Into Writing contest.

Dickey and Housman are both juniors at Searsport District High School, and Lindauer is a junior at Bonny Eagle High School in Standish.

Six finalists were chosen from 151 entries in this year’s contest, representing 45 high schools. Other finalists were Alex Lurie of Brooks, a junior at Mount View in Thorndike; Olivia Dubois, a junior at Old Orchard Beach; and James Austin of Farmingdale, a junior at Hall-Dale. These three received $500 each.

The winning entries will be published in the Audience section of the Maine Sunday Telegram on June 10.


Annual KahBang Festival announces musical lineup

Electronic music artist Bassnectar and veteran alternative metal band Deftones are among the musical acts announced for the fourth annual KahBang Festival, to be held Aug. 9 -12 on the Bangor waterfront.

The musical lineup for the festival — which includes art and film — was announced late Wednesday night. Other acts announced include Wale, Penguin Prison, Reptar and Astronautiulus.

More than 50 bands will perform at the festival, including a wide range of hip-hop, indie rock, pop and alternative acts. Several are acts from Maine with Maine ties, such as The Mallet Brothers Band and Lady Lamb The Beekeeper.

Tickets will be available 10 a.m. today at the festival’s website, www.kahbang.com, and range from $35 for a one-day pass to $135 for a VIP camping pass.


Camera captures hatching of Hog Island osprey chicks

A live camera on Thursday captured the hatching of osprey chicks at Hog Island Audubon Camp in Bremen, one of several “Project Puffin” wildlife sanctuaries along Maine’s coast.

The first of three chicks hatched a little before noon, according to the Audubon Society, which partnered with explore.org to launch the live cam and capture the moment. The other two hatchlings followed later in the day. Watch the nesting ospreys here.


USS George H.W. Bush will bring ex-president aboard on Sunday

The Navy’s newest aircraft carrier, the USS George H.W. Bush, will appear off the coast of Maine a day later than originally planned.

The ship is now scheduled to arrive early Sunday, rather than Saturday. The carrier is to come within several miles of Kennebunkport, and the former president will take a Navy helicopter from his summer home to the carrier to see the ship that bears his name.

Earlier plans called for the carrier to be visible from the coast Saturday afternoon.

The USS George H.W. Bush is the 10th Nimitz-class supercarrier.

Its home port is Newport News, Va.

The former president will celebrate his 88th birthday on Tuesday.


High water, debris from storm jam up Songo Locks

Boats will not be able to pass through the Songo Locks swing bridge this weekend.

Crews have been unable to properly operate the locks due to the high water and debris from this week’s heavy rainfall, according to the Maine Department of Transportation.

The bridge will be closed to all commercial and recreational boats. It will reopen on Monday if the water recedes enough, the DOT said.

The Songo Locks are on the Songo River, which connects Sebago Lake to Brandy Pond.