Man accused of choking woman in Motel 6 room

A Portland man was charged with aggravated assault after police say he choked a woman whom he had allowed to stay in his motel room.

Police charged Roger Kleinsmith, 49, in connection with an incident at 8:20 p.m. Saturday at Motel 6 on Riverside Street.

Kleinsmith met the woman at a city shelter and offered her a room to stay in for the night, police said. The man then made sexual advances and when she declined, he choked her, police said.

The woman was able to get the attention of a motel employee, who called police. Kleinsmith was gone when police arrived but was found Sunday evening at the soup kitchen on Preble Street, police said.


Symphony gets $15,000 for its wellness program

The Portland Symphony Orchestra has received a grant for a second consecutive year to fund its Music & Wellness program.

The orchestra is one of 23 across the country selected by the League of American Orchestras to receive a 2013-14 Getty Education and Community Investment Grant.

This year, $443,000 was awarded, and the Portland symphony received $15,000.

The Music & Wellness program was launched last year in partnership with the New England Rehabilitation Hospital of Portland. PSO Executive Director Lisa Dixon said the goal is to “prove the healing process and reduce stress levels of hospital patients, employees, and patients’ visiting families.”



Firefighters keep blaze contained to bedroom

Firefighters kept a fire that started in a second-floor bedroom from spreading to the rest of a two-story Naples home on Monday night.

Naples Fire Chief Chris Pond said a malfunctioning electric blanket probably started the fire at 3 Escott Way. The couple who live in the home were not injured.

Pond said nearly all of the damage from the fire was confined to the bedroom and its contents. The couple were expected to be able to remain in the residence. Firefighters from Naples and Casco responded.

The fire was reported at 5:30 p.m.



Water district working to fix ruptured sewer line

The Kittery Water District was still working to complete sewer repairs near Walker Street on Monday night and a Kittery police dispatcher gave no estimate of when the repairs might be completed.

A rupture in a sewer line was reported at 3 p.m. Sunday and officials worried that work on the line would affect Monday morning’s heavy commute of workers into the Portsmouth Naval Shipyard.

However, because of the Martin Luther King Jr. Day holiday, there was minimal staffing at the shipyard and no complaints by motorists, despite Walker Street being narrowed to one lane, a police dispatcher said.

The district had hoped to have repairs to the ruptured line completed by Monday night.

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