Baxter Boulevard reopens after eight-month project

Baxter Boulevard reopened to motorists Monday morning, after a 1.4-mile stretch of the road was closed for eight months for a sewer project.

The city installed a new sewer and storm water system to reduce the amount of sewage discharged into Back Cove during rainstorms. Two new million-gallon tanks will store storm water and sewage until the rain stops, when it will then be pumped to the East End Treatment Plant.

Previously, polluted water was discharged into the cove.

While the boulevard was closed to traffic, neighbors and others took advantage of the project to use the roadway for recreation, prompting a proposal to close Baxter Boulevard on Sundays from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. for that purpose. The City Council’s Transportation, Energy and Sustainability Committee is expected to formally take up the idea.

Father of missing toddler arrested for bail violation

The father of a toddler whose disappearance generated national attention is back in jail after his arrest for violating his bail conditions.

The South Portland Police Department said that Justin DiPietro, 26, was arrested Friday morning following a traffic stop on Broadway in South Portland.

DiPietro is the father of Ayla Reynolds, who was reported missing from DiPietro’s home in Waterville in December 2011. Ayla, who was 20 months old, is presumed dead and her disappearance remains unsolved.

DiPietro was charged in July with assault on an ex-girlfriend in Portland and released on bail.

Sgt. John Sutton said DiPietro was pulled over around 11 a.m. Friday by Officer Scott Corbett for driving a vehicle with an expired inspection sticker. After running a license check, Corbett determined that a condition of DiPietro’s bail was that he could not possess alcohol.

Corbett found alcohol in the vehicle and arrested DiPietro, who was taken to the Cumberland County Jail where he spent the weekend.

DiPietro was returned to jail after making a court appearance Monday. His bail has been set at $210 cash.

Burglary suspect arrested during break-in in Buxton

A man Portland authorities describe as a “dangerous burglar” was arrested Saturday morning in Buxton.

Nicole Clegg, a spokeswoman for the city of Portland, said David Michael Ferrar, 23, of Portland was arrested around 6:30 a.m. in the course of allegedly committing another burglary.

Officers received information that Ferrar was in the Buxton area and was in possession of a handgun that he had stolen from a previous break-in.

Officers from Buxton, Portland, the Maine State Police and the Maine Warden Service converged on a home on Dunnell Road where Ferrar was taken into custody.

Ferrar was charged with two counts of burglary and theft of a firearm. He is being held at the York County Jail, where his bail has been set at $150,000.


Mainer’s charge dismissed after incident at Swift home

A trespassing charge has been dismissed against a Portland, Maine, man accused of showing up at singer Taylor Swift’s Rhode Island vacation home.

The Westerly Sun reported that police decided to drop the charge after determining it would be difficult to prove that Joseph Bernatche, 55, was on Swift’s property when he handed her security guard a note telling Swift to call him.

Westerly police Lt. Phil Williams said it wasn’t clear whether the guard had passed onto public property when he accepted the note.

Bernatche pleaded not guilty to the charge of willful trespass after his arrest on July 27. Judge Melanie Quirk dismissed the charge Friday in 4th Division District Court.


RV crash on I-95 injures three Nova Scotia men

State police say three Canadian men were injured when their recreational vehicle crashed in eastern Maine.

Police said Edward Smith, 62, of Chester, Nova Scotia, was driving a Ford motor home north on Interstate 95 in Island Falls about 2:30 a.m. Monday when he left the highway for a construction detour.

Police said he did not slow down on the exit ramp as he approached Route 2, crashed through the guardrail and went down a steep embankment before coming to a stop in the woods.

Smith, as well his passengers, David Pierce, 64, and Stephan Daubs, 68, both of Nova Scotia, were taken to Houlton Regional Hospital. Police did not disclose the severity of their injuries. The RV was totaled.

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