Two women charged after searching inmate for drugs

Two female inmates at the Cumberland County Jail were arraigned Thursday on charges of assault and unlawful sexual contact after they allegedly jumped another inmate and searched her for drugs.

Heidi Stevens, 39, and Crystal Miller, 26, both of Portland, are accused of luring another woman into a cell at 11:15 a.m. Saturday and searching her for drugs, according to the sheriff’s office. The search included contact with her genitals, a sheriff’s office investigation found.

Authorities said they do not have any reason to believe the victim had drugs. A corrections officer was informed of the alleged assault and removed the inmate from the pod.

The two suspects were transferred to the jail’s maximum security unit. Stevens is being held for violating probation and Miller on charges of theft and forgery.


Portland Observatory free Friday in honor of Flag Day

Admission to the historic Portland Observatory on Congress Street will be free Friday in honor of Flag Day.

Greater Portland Landmarks, which operates the Portland Observatory, will offer tours of the Munjoy Hill landmark between 10 a.m. and 5 p.m. along with craft activities for children, live music, and guided walking tours of Munjoy Hill and the nearby Eastern Cemetery.

The property is a National Historic Landmark and represents the last remaining maritime signal tower in the United States.

The 86-foot-tall tower, which was built in 1807 by Capt. Lemuel Moody, enabled Moody to alert merchants and ship owners that a ship was arriving in port.

The city took ownership of the observatory in 1937. It is open from Memorial Day weekend through Columbus Day.

According to its website, there are 103 steps between the street level entrance and the observatory’s lantern deck.


Portland man due in court on charges from stabbing

A Portland man is scheduled to make his initial court appearance Friday on charges that he stabbed a man in downtown Portland on June 7.

Police asked for the public’s help in identifying an attacker who stabbed a 22-year-old man multiple times at the corner of Fore and Wharf streets.

With help from witnesses and video from a local bar, police identified a suspect.

Christopher Johnson, 23, of 255 Oxford St., turned himself in to police Wednesday and was charged with elevated aggravated assault.

The victim has been released from the hospital and is expected to make a full recovery, police said.


Canadian man sentenced for trying to smuggle pills

A Canadian man has been sentenced to 10 years in prison for trying to smuggle more than 2,000 methamphetamine pills into the United States last Thanksgiving.

Charles Maillet of Dieppe, New Brunswick, was also sentenced Wednesday in U.S. District Court in Bangor to five years of probation.

He pleaded guilty in January to importation of 500 grams or more of methamphetamine.

Federal authorities said Maillet, 50, was apprehended on Thanksgiving while crossing into the United States at Calais.

He told U.S. Customs and Border Protection that he was going to visit family in Massachusetts for the holiday.

Officers, with the help of dogs, found the pills hidden in Maillet’s rented vehicle.

Maillet told inspectors that he was a long-haul commercial truck driver and used the pills to stay awake.


Pawnbrokers bill awaits signature of governor

A bill to curb property theft by requiring pawnbrokers to photograph items they receive is awaiting Gov. Paul LePage’s signature.

The bill, which received final Senate passage Tuesday, requires pawnbrokers and others who deal in personal jewelry and precious metals to maintain digital photographic records of those items.

Supporters say the bill is intended to make it harder for criminals to sell stolen goods and help theft victims, small business owners and police.

The bill would require that pawnbrokers hold on to items for 10 or 15 days before they can be resold or altered, such as by melting.


Camera streams live video of Arctic terns on island

A high-definition camera has begun streaming live video over the Internet of Arctic terns that are nesting on a remote island off the coast of Maine.

Explore.org in collaboration with the National Audubon Society went live with the camera Wednesday on Seal Island National Wildlife Refuge.

Explore.org says it’s the first time it knows of that a camera has streamed video of Artic terns.

The goal is to engage the public and spur interest in seabird restoration, while also helping in scientific research.

The Arctic tern population in the Gulf of Maine has declined about 40 percent in the past decade.

Explore.org now has four cameras on two Maine islands where people can view terns, puffins, ospreys and other seabirds over the Internet.

The videos can be found at www.explore.org/birds.