Man who killed burglar sentenced to prison on drug charges 

BANGOR, Maine (AP) — A Maine man who shot and killed a burglar has been sentenced to more than 13 years in prison on federal drug and gun charges. 

The U.S. Attorney’s office says 25-year-old Jordan Richard was sentenced Monday after he pleaded guilty in June to conspiracy to distribute heroin and fentanyl among other drugs and discharging a firearm. 

Prosecutors say Richard and others conspired to distribute the drugs in Franklin County between January 2016 and September 2017. 

Authorities say Richard shot and killed one of two men who tried to rob him in July 2016. Investigators at the scene seized cocaine, more than $20,000 in cash and drug packaging materials. 

Richard’s attorney says his client acted in self-defense, and the state declined to prosecute him for the fatal shooting. 

Maine shutting down productive scallop ground for season 

EASTPORT, Maine (AP) — Maine fishing regulators are shutting down some of the most fertile scallop fishing grounds in the state to help keep the shellfish’s population healthy. 

The Maine Department of Marine Resources says it will implement a closure of Cobscook Bay, including the Whiting and Dennys Bay areas. Cobscook Bay is the most productive scallop fishing area in Maine. 

The Maine scalloping season runs from December to April, but the state typically uses targeted closures to prevent overharvest. The state is also closing down part of Wohoa Bay, which is located off of Addison. 

New Hampshire Sea Grant to prioritize aquaculture projects 

DURHAM, Maine (AP) — New Hampshire Sea Grant is looking to fund projects that focus on aquaculture research in its next funding cycle. 

The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration says the grants are for the 2020-21 research funding cycle and may be one or two years in duration. The agency says the budget for the projects can go up to $100,000. 

Sea Grant says it is encouraging aquaculture proposals because it plans to use matching funds made available through NOAA’s National Sea Grant College Program. Sea Grant’s designed as a federal-university partnership program. 

New Hampshire Sea Grant is taking pre-proposals until Feb. 22. An informational session is scheduled to take place on Thursday at 1:30 p.m. in Durham. 

Maine lawmakers to hear from new governor’s nominees 

AUGUSTA, Maine (AP) — Lawmakers are set to hear from the nominees chosen by the new Democratic governor to lead state agencies and roll out her plans to tackle the opioid crisis, climate change and health care costs. 

Lawmakers on Tuesday will hold public hearings on Gov. Janet Mills’ nominations to lead the state’s financial, transportation, economic and marine resources agencies. 

Mills is the state’s first female governor and has nominated eight women to join her 15-member Cabinet. Lawmakers are set to hold hearings on 14 nominees this week. 

Lawmakers on Friday will consider the nomination of former Portland police chief Mike Sauschuck for the public safety commissioner. A former Republican state lawmaker and several gun rights groups are criticizing his nomination over his opposition to Maine’s 2015 concealed carry law. 

Rare hawk in Maine shows signs of worse frostbite damage 

PORTLAND, Maine (AP) — A group that is caring for an injured South American hawk that turned up in a park in Maine says the bird is showing more significant signs of frostbite. 

The great black hawk is native to Central and South America and it drew the attention of wildlife fans when it showed up in Deering Oaks Park in Portland weeks ago. It was then found lying in snow on Jan. 21 and taken to Avian Haven rehabilitation center in Freedom. 

Avian Haven says the skin on the feet of the hawk has shown “significant deterioration” over the past two days. The group says the condition is “very serious” but “hope remains.” 

The Portland Press Herald reports bird lovers are still not sure how the hawk ended up in Maine. 

Maine names Medicaid head as it ramps up expansion efforts 

AUGUSTA, Maine (AP) — Maine has named a new director of its Medicaid program as it signs up more low-income individuals for coverage under voter-approved expansion. 

Acting Health and Human Services Commissioner Jeanne Lambrew announced Monday the hiring of Michelle Probert as director of MaineCare services. 

Probert previously worked at Bath Iron Works as manager of integrated health services. She also served as Maine’s director of strategic initiatives for MaineCare from 2011 to 2014. 

Lambrew said 2,112 individuals have been granted coverage under expansion between Jan. 7 and 24. She says Maine’s piloting an effort to automatically enroll individuals who are already receiving prescription assistance. 

Democratic Gov. Janet Mills says she’ll work with lawmakers to fund Maine’s share of expansion, which her Republican predecessor blocked. Voters approved expansion for over 70,000 Mainers in 2017. 

NOAA official: Agency behind on East Coast due to shutdown 

GLOUCESTER, Mass. (AP) — The administrator of a federal fisheries office says the government is behind schedule on actions related to oceans management because of the long shutdown. 

The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration is charged with regulating fishing and marine issues for the U.S. government. Michael Pentony, the administrator of its Greater Atlantic Region Fisheries Office, says Monday the office is “behind schedule on many, many critically important actions.” 

Pentony says fishing boats haven’t been able to fish because they could not get permits. He says there also weren’t enough resources to fully monitor protected ocean resources. Some fisheries have also been unable to operate at full capacity. 

Pentony says it will take time to “work through the significant backlog of time-critical work” that built up during the 35-day shutdown, which ended Friday. 

Task force on police use of force focuses on mental health 

AUGUSTA, Maine (AP) — A Maine task force that reviewed police officers’ use of deathly force is calling for expanded access to inpatient mental health care and crisis stabilization. 

The report released Monday says police are facing more calls seeking help for individuals in crisis involving issues such as mental health and substance use. The report said more officers should receive crisis intervention training and work with local crisis agencies. 

The report reviewed 10 incidents involving officers’ use of deadly force between 2015 and 2016. 

Four incidents unfolded within one minute, and firearms were often present. Police officers used deadly force on eight individuals living with mental health challenges, just two of whom were known to be receiving treatment. 

Seven individuals had recently experienced a loss, and six had previously engaged in domestic violence.  

Maine to open up 2019 camp reservations 

AUGUSTA, Maine (AP) — Maine says it will soon open up reservations for state campgrounds. 

The Bureau of Maine State Parks will open the state’s reservations system and call center starting Friday, Feb. 1 but only for reservations at the popular Sebago Lake State Park campground. 

Reservations at the rest of Maine’s state park campgrounds will open Feb. 5, and internet reservations continue through Sept. 6. 

A state website says that the goal is to reduce wait times. Maine doesn’t require a minimum length of state between July 1 and Sept. 8. 

Maine has not raised fees for sites at state park campgrounds this camping season, and fees vary from site to site. Non-residents who want sites with water and electric hookups face the highest fees, which reach $45 at Sebago Lake. 

Last of 3 charged in Millinocket killing to be tried 

BANGOR, Maine (AP) — A trial is set for the last of three people charged in a home invasion that left a Maine man dead. 

Prosecutors say Tony Locklear, Alexis Locklear and her boyfriend, 39-year-old Christopher Murray, shot Wayne Lapierre and his wife at their home in Millinocket in December 2017. Wayne Lapierre later died at a hospital from his wounds. 

Murray, of Red Springs, North Carolina, is scheduled to stand trial on Monday. 

Tony Locklear pleaded guilty to murder on Jan. 8, and his 22-year-old daughter, Alexis, of Maxton, North Carolina, pleaded guilty to robbery last week. 

Court documents indicate the trio went to the home of Lapierre, a businessman and medical marijuana grower, to rob him. They fled with marijuana and cash. 

Lewiston to be featured on CBS’ ‘Criminal Minds’ 

LEWISTON, Maine (AP) — Maine’s second-largest city is getting some love from a TV show. 

The CBS “Criminal Minds” episode that is set to air Wednesday will focus on Lewiston. But it may not be the sort of attention that folks will be thrilled about. 

The episode is entitled, “Sick and Evil.” 

CBS says the plot sends the Behavioral Analysis Unit to Lewiston to investigate a string of murders taking place in haunted houses. 

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