Courts and Crime

If you're the victim of a property crime, a judge can order someone found guilty of the crime to make restitution to you.

"What we found out is that in the long run, that rarely happens," says Marina Villeneuve of the Maine Center for Public Interest Reporting.

In a series of articles, beginning today, Villeneuve describes a system that promises too much and delivers too little restitution. I talked about this with Villeneuve and John Christie, editor-in-chief of the Maine Center for Public Interest Reporting.

PORTLAND, Maine — A Maine mother busted for driving 124 mph with her two kids in the car in April has been sentenced to six months in jail, and police say she's now facing a driving under the influence charge.

Twenty-six-year-old Cheryl Gilson of Cornish was sentenced Monday in Portland District Court. She pleaded guilty to endangering the welfare of a child and other charges.

BANGOR, Maine — A Maine man accused of using a phony Facebook profile to lure a 15-year-old girl to her death is due to stand trial this winter on murder and kidnapping charges.

The attorney general's office says it received notice Tuesday of a tentative trial date of late February.

Kyle Dube, who's from Orono, is accused of creating a fake Facebook profile and using it to set up a meeting with Nichole Cable, of Glenburn, before killing her and hiding her body in May 2013.

MINOT, Maine — Maine State Police say they're investigating a home invasion in Minot where three people reported being robbed and assaulted by three masked men.

State police say a resident of the Garfield Road home called 911 at about 11 p.m. Saturday to report that someone was being held hostage and that a number of suspects with guns were assaulting occupants of the house.

Authorities say the three victims had minor injuries and were treated at the scene. One victim is from Auburn and the other two are from New York City.

PORTLAND, Maine — Maine's state and federal courts have issued warnings about phone and email scams by those trying to trick people into giving them money or steal their identities.

In the state system, the warning was issued after a York County resident was defrauded of $1,000 after receiving a phone call that showed up on caller ID as a Maine courthouse's number or the sheriff department's number.

AUGUSTA, Maine — The ex-husband of Maine's Republican party vice chairwoman is pleading not guilty to charges he threatened her, her boyfriend and one of her children with a loaded gun.

Wilfred Morissette entered his pleas in Kennebec County Superior Court in Augusta on Tuesday. District Attorney Maeghan Maloney says his trial could begin in September at the earliest.

Police say Morissette was intoxicated when he pulled a weapon on Susan Morissette outside of her Winslow home. The couple divorced in 2012.

ELLSWORTH, Maine — The district attorney is reviewing the results of a state fire marshal investigation into an arson fire last March at Birdsacre, a nonprofit bird sanctuary in Ellsworth.

Sgt. Tim York tells WNSX-FM that the fire at the Stanwood Homestead Museum was intentionally set. The interior of the building is still in a state of disarray with fire damage, pieces of the collection destroyed and numerous items awaiting restoration.

The museum is part of a 200-acre wildlife sanctuary that aims to preserve the vision of ornithologist Cordelia Stanwood.

A judge set bail at $1 million cash for a Gorham man charged with kidnapping North Conway teen Abigail Hernandez and authorities are continuing to investigate the case.


ROCKLAND, Maine — Court officials say a former Maine resident convicted of trying to kill his wife by pushing her off a cliff will be sentenced on Sept. 25.

A Maine jury convicted 71-year-old Charles Black of six felonies on July 21. The top charge of attempted murder carries a maximum sentence of 30 years in prison. Officials say the sentencing date is tentative.

PORTLAND, Maine — A 30-year-old Lewiston man who pleaded guilty to a charge he forced a boy to perform a sex act that was streamed online has been sentenced to 25 years in prison.

Court documents indicate Ethan Hinkley streamed the video online as he forced a teenager to masturbate at knifepoint in July 2012.

A federal judge said she didn't feel a proposed 15-year sentence for Hinkley would adequately protect the public, so she added 10 years to the sentence on Monday. Defense lawyer J. Hilary Billings filed a notice of appeal on Tuesday.

PORTLAND, Maine — A former Maine State Police chief charged with sexually assaulting a 4-year-old relative has been denied permission to have supervised contact with four of his grandchildren.

A judge ruled Tuesday against 74-year-old Andrew Demers Jr. of New Gloucester. He pleaded not guilty in April.

Defense lawyer Walter McKee sought to amend the conditions of Demers' $5,000 cash bail. He said the children's parents supported the effort, but District Attorney Stephanie Anderson asked to keep the bail conditions intact.

RUMFORD, Maine — The Maine attorney general has ruled that a Rumford police officer was legally justified in using deadly force against a suicidal woman who was advancing on him with a knife.

Police responded after 25-year-old Jessica Byrn-Francisco reported to her counselor that she'd ingested drugs in an attempt to take her own life.

WATERVILLE, Maine — Police in Waterville, Maine, are investigating the stabbing of a 24-year-old man in the city's south end.

Police say they responded to a report of a person being stabbed at 9 p.m. Monday near the intersection of Carey Lane and Water Street. The man had been stabbed in the abdomen. Emergency workers transported the man by ambulance to Inland Hospital, where he underwent emergency surgery.

Police say the victim is uncooperative and won't speak with investigators. Police say the stabbing appears to be the result of a personal dispute.

BANGOR, Maine — A Corinth, Maine, man is pleading guilty of possession of child pornography at U.S. District Court in Bangor.

FBI agents say 40-year-old David Livingston Brown emailed a video containing child pornography to an undercover agent in 2013. The bureau says Brown later admitted to sending and receiving images of child pornography by email and collecting hundreds of images and videos of child pornography over a period of several years.

Brown faces up to 20 years in prison and a fine of $250,000. His sentencing has not been scheduled.

JACKMAN, Maine — A Quebec resident is pleading guilty to charges he illegally smuggled his wife into the United States earlier this month.

Court records say 40-year-old Pierre Poulin of St. Martin, Quebec used an all-terrain vehicle to drive his wife to a wooded area near the Canada-United States border and then drove his vehicle to the Jackman, Maine entry point intending to pick her up. Poulin's wife is a Brazilian citizen.

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