Joint efforts leads to heroin bust, felony drug charge

A Kennebunk man faces felony drug charges after $3,000 worth of heroin was seized in his home on York Street.

Police Wednesday charged Christopher Robart, 27, of 41 York St. with aggravated drug trafficking and violating probation and he was being held on $25,000 bail at York County Jail pending a Feb. 10 court date.

The arrest was the result of a joint investigation by Kennebunk police and the Maine Drug Enforcement Agency.

The search came after police interrupted a drug transaction on Brown Street.


LePage OKs monitoring devices on domestic abusers

Maine Gov. Paul LePage has approved funding for pilot projects that will place electronic monitoring devices on domestic violence abusers.

The Republican governor’s office said Thursday that the programs will take place in Somerset, Kennebec and Sagadahoc counties. The goal is to study the monitors’ effectiveness in reducing repeat offenses and increasing compliance.

The projects will begin in January and last up to six months. Kennebec and Sagadahoc counties are getting $4,000 for the effort and Somerset County will receive $2,000.

A total of $36,000 is available for the electronic monitoring program. House Republican Leader Ken Fredette, who sponsored the bill to create the projects, is putting in a bill this session that would boost its funding by $500,000.

Head of Democratic Party in Maine will step down

The executive director of the Maine Democratic Party is stepping down.

The party said Thursday that Mary Erin Casale is leaving her post and will be replaced by Finance Director Jeremy Kennedy until a new executive director is announced next month.

Casale has been executive director since 2011.

She said in a statement that it has always been her “intention to step down at the end of this year to pursue other opportunities.”

Ben Grant, the former chairman of the party, left his post shortly after the November elections, when Democrats suffered significant losses.

He was replaced by Phil Bartlett, a Democratic national committeeman and former Maine Senate majority leader.

Bird and small game hunting season winds down Several Maine hunting seasons for birds and small game animals are entering their final two weeks.

The seasons for ruffed grouse, bobwhite quail and pheasant all end on Dec. 31. That is also the final day for hunting gray squirrels, raccoons, skunks and opossums.

The grouse and quail seasons set daily limits of four. The pheasant season limits hunters to two per day.

The gray squirrel season includes an extending season for hunting via falconry that ends Feb. 28. Both seasons include a daily limit of four. There are no bag limits for hunting raccoons, skunks or opossums.


Driver in critical condition after crash on 295 exit ramp

A Portland man is in critical condition after he lost control of his car and crashed into trees on the Brunswick exit ramp off Interstate 295 northbound at mile 28.

Christopher Doran, 35, suffered head injuries in the crash, which happened at 7:45 a.m., police said. Doran lost control of the Subaru station wagon he was driving as he entered the turn on the exit ramp and then overcorrected and hit the trees, destroying the car. It was not immediately clear whether he was wearing a seatbelt.

The crash site was closed for three hours. Initially, authorities requested a LifeFlight medical helicopter but one could not take off because of weather conditions.

An ambulance brought Doran to Maine Medical Center where he was admitted for treatment.

Interstate traffic was not affected.


Woman killed by motorist while on way to mailbox

Police say a Glenburn woman crossing the street to get her mail has been struck and killed by a passing motorist.

State Police said Stephen Niles, 57, of Bradford, was driving south on Pushaw Road when he struck 66-year-old Barbara Crossman, who was crossing the street to get the mail.

Niles told police that he did not see the victim, and that he initially thought that he had struck a deer or some other animal.

Investigators think that Crossman died instantly at the scene.

Maine State Police Lt. Sean Hashey says weather and poor visibility may have been factors.

The death remains under investigation and there was no word on charges.


Worker dies while getting down from truck ladder

Maine State Police said a South Portland man died Thursday after being stricken with a medical issue while at work in Dayton.

Stephen McCausland, spokesman for the Maine State Police, identified the victim as 61-year-old Craig Libby of South Portland.

Libby collapsed Thursday afternoon while working at the Goodwin Mills Road gravel pit owned by Dayton Sand and Gravel Company, police said. Libby is an employee of Dayton Sand and Gravel.

“The death is likely from natural causes and not from any injuries while on the job,” McCausland said in a statement issued Thursday night.

Goodwin Mills Fire Chief Roger Hooper said Libby was climbing down a ladder attached to a bucket truck when he went into cardiac arrest and fell. Hooper’s department sent an ambulance to the work site around 2:48 p.m., but rescue workers were unable to resuscitate Libby.

The death is the second at the business in two years. Shawn Hutchins, 41, died in December 2012 after falling about 80 feet from a lift at Dayton Sand and Gravel.

From staff and news services