Maine news

Mal Leary / Maine Public

With a twenty-one-gun salute, hundreds of police officers from across Maine paid tribute to law enforcement officers who have died in the line of duty.

Bucksport Police Chief Sean Geagan, president of the Maine Chiefs Of Police Association, spoke at the annual ceremony before a monument at the state capital.

“Always remember…that although we call it a thin blue line, it is very strong. And it will never be broken,” Geagan said.

Sheriff's deputies in a Maine county will be using body cameras and new patrol car cameras.

The Sun-Journal reports Androscoggin County commissioners voted unanimously Wednesday to approve spending over $126,000 on 14 body cameras, 14 car cameras and an updated system that includes new software and technical support.

The system will be financed for five years through Government Capital Corp.

Sheriff Eric Samson says the county patrol car cameras are outdated. Samson says the new system will offer "better connectivity." Videos will be stored on a cloud system.

One hundred years ago, the Spanish flu pandemic infected 500 million people worldwide — about one-third of the planet’s population — and killed an estimated 20 million-50 million victims, including some 675,000 Americans. Author Ken Davis join us to talk about the history and repercussions of this pandemic, as captured in his newest book.

ORONO, Maine — A pub that’s been a preferred after-class hang-out for students at the University of Maine for more than 23 years says it will close its doors at the end of this month.

The Bear Brew Pub opened in 1995 in Orono, after the original owner spent two years renovating a long-empty Main Street building into a cozy neighborhood brewpub. The Bangor Daily News reports the bar and restaurant offered classic pub food like burgers and chicken wings alongside a small array of beers brewed on site.

Two former ambassadors join us to discuss the war in Afghanistan and other current events in the Middle East and around the world.

Abukar Adan / Maine Public/file

PORTLAND, Maine - A popular science center that has attracted traveling exhibits to Maine's largest city is closing its doors.
The Portland Press Herald reports the Portland Science Center is shutting down after nearly three years on the city's waterfront. The center has featured exhibits about subjects such as sharks, pirates and the Titanic.

Changes to the Post-9/11 GI Bill coming into effect on Aug. 1 could have a significant effect on the amount of housing money students receive.

Currently, rates take into account the cost of housing where the main campus of the school is located. Beginning in August, housing payments will be calculated using the zip code of where the student is physically taking most classes.

Robert Haley, director of the Maine State Approving Agency for Veterans Education Programs, says the change is an effort to right-size housing payments.

Patty Wight / Maine Public/file

Maine Secretary of State Matt Dunlap is reminding voters who are enrolled in one of the four political parties, and who want to change their affiliation in time for the June 12 primaries, to do so soon. 

Dunlap says most municipalities will require party-enrolled voters who want to change their affiliation to do so by May 25.

That deadline does not affect voters who are not enrolled in one of the parties because Maine allows unenrolled voters to sign-up for any of the parties at any time, including Election Day.

Steven Senne / Associated Press

DURHAM, N.H. - University of New Hampshire scientists have developed a method to estimate New England cottontail populations, whose numbers have been declining over the past 50 years.
The scientists say the region's only native rabbit is difficult to monitor due to its rare and secretive nature. With the recently developed method, they will be able to detect trends over time to conserve the rabbits by using DNA collected from fecal pellets. They said they are implementing the tool over 30 managed sites across the species range.

Courtesy Milbridge Police Department

Milbridge police and the Maine State Police are investigating the theft of more than a dozen firearms and 45,000 rounds of ammunition from a Milbridge homeowner. 

Milbridge Police Chief Lewis Pinkham said the homeowner believes the items were taken between November and April while the home was vacant. He said a $1,000 reward is being offered for information leading to the arrest of those responsible for the crime.

The host of NPR and WBUR's "Only A Game" since the program began in 1993, Bill joins us to talk about the latest news from the world of sports and the intersection of sports and storytelling.

Robbie Feinberg / Maine Public

The polarization of American politics has made its mark in all corners of our society, including schools. In an effort to teach high school students how to engage in civil discourse, and to find common ground on important issues, the organizers of a new project in southern Maine brought together 29 students with diverse backgrounds and points of view.   

POLAND, Maine - A Maine couple is installing a "ghost bike'' memorial at the site where their son was killed by a drunken driver 20 years ago.
Bob Barton says he learned about ghost bike memorials online, and says he thinks this will be the first monument of its kind in the state of Maine. The Sun-Journal reports Bob and Suzanne Barton will place the memorial and a plaque next week to commemorate the 20th anniversary of 16-year-old Ethan Barton's death.
The Barton couple will place the white-painted bike at the site where Ethan was killed in Poland.

Everyone has undoubtedly had a difficult time finding the words to describe their feelings, even to a close friend. People do not know what to write in cards to relatives or even friends. Everyone has laughed at a meme, but some people cannot understand one word in another language. The struggle of not knowing what to say and how to express words to others through writing is like not being able to understand a person speaking another language because of your lack of knowledge.