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Criminal Mischief (02/14/2018)

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Rockland standoff

ROCKLAND —A Bangor man face multiple charges following a several-hour standoff at a Rockland hotel armed with a walking stick.

Rockland police received reports of a man behaving in a disorderly fashion at the Trade Winds Inn at around 7 a.m. on the morning of Feb. 11. Reports say the suspect threatened officers with his walking stick before locking himself inside a room for about six hours.

The standoff ended peacefully about six hours later; State Police tactical and crisis negotiation teams responded in an effort to get the man to surrender, which he did at around 12:30 p.m.

The man, 62-year-old Timothy St. Thomas of Bangor, has been charged with criminal threatening and criminal trespass, among other charges. He was taken to the Knox County Jail.

Belfast burglar

BELFAST – A Belfast man has been arrested in relation to a string of burglaries that struck that town last year.

According to reports, 46-year-old Peter McCaffrey of Belfast has been charged with receiving stolen property and violating conditions of release, with more charges – including multiple counts of burglary – expected to follow.

Well over a dozen burglaries, with thousands of dollars of property stolen, that were reported in Belfast from mid-October to early November have been connected to McCaffrey. He had been a person of interest, but it wasn’t until late January that a search warrant was obtained and executed.

In the course of that search, items known to have been taken in that rash of burglaries were located. A considerable amount of additional property – also believed stolen – was also present.

Among the many stolen items were appliances and other items taken from a then-newly-finished Habitat for Humanity house in Searsport, including a refrigerator, a stove, a cooler and other items – some still bearing the Habitat for Humanity name.

The total value of all the stolen items is in excess of $20,000. While authorities have begun to reconnect property with owners, the items are still classified as evidence and will remain in police custody until the investigation is completed.

McCaffrey was arrested on Jan. 31 and arraigned on Feb. 2; he was subsequently released on bail.

Reduced speed, reduced accidents

PORTLAND (AP) — There have been fewer crashes on Interstate 295 north of Portland since the speed limit was reduced, though officials say it’s too early to say whether it’s the start of a positive trend.

The number of collisions on the 24-mile stretch between Portland and Brunswick went up sharply after the state increased the speed limit to 70 mph four years ago. According to media reports, since the limit was lowered again to 65 mph last March, the number of crashes has dropped. In 2017, there were 237 crashes in that area, 18 percent fewer than the previous year.

Steve Landry, the state’s head traffic engineer, says he hopes the numbers continue to go down but without more evidence, he can’t say for sure whether the lower speed limit caused the change.

Dedham bear fight

DEDHAM — This was one pit stop that took an unexpected turn.

A Dedham man was driving on Route 1A recently when his puppy – a Labrador mix named Clover – needed to stop and relieve herself. He pulled over and walked into the woods to let her pee.

But they had company. Specifically, a bear.

According to Dustin Gray, the bear lunged at him and his dog and he reacted as we all hope we would when our precious pet was in danger – he started swinging. He punched and kicked the bear – estimated to weigh around 150 pounds – and even reported that he poked it in the eye. Ultimately, he scared it away, though not before getting knocked down as it fled the scene.

Gray suffered some scratches and bruises, while Clover suffered significant puncture wounds.

The Maine Warden Service is investigating, though Game Wardens have indicated that it was likely a freak incident, a perfect storm of fluctuating temperatures and wet weather that woke the bear from hibernation.

Still, it’s a reminder to be careful with your pets when you venture into the woods. You never know who might be out there.

Hartland thefts

HARTLAND – A Hartland man has been arrested in connection with several burglaries and thefts that took place in that town recently.

On Feb. 7, Maine State Police troopers arrested 22-year-old Cody Gould of Hartland after investigating several residential burglary and theft cases in the town over the past two months. Troopers handled several calls of Cody going door to door trying to sell tools and other property stolen from residents in town.

Gould was arrested without incident; he has since been charged with Burglary Class C, Burglary Class C, Theft By Unauthorized Taking or Transfer Class D, Theft By Unauthorized Taking or Transfer Class E and Violation of Conditional Release.

He was transported to the Somerset County Jail.

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