Author: Edward Tomic

Edward Tomic is a reporter for The Maine Wire based in Southern Maine. He grew up near Boston, Massachusetts and is a graduate of Boston University. He can be reached at tomic@themainewire.com

Lewiston mass shooter Robert Card, who killed 18 people and injured more than a dozen others in two Oct. 25, 2023 shootings before dying by suicide at age 40, likely had a traumatic brain injury from his time serving as a hand grenade instructor with the U.S Army, according to his family. [RELATED: Lewiston Shooter Robert Card’s Army Reserve Unit Was Filled with Cops…] The family of Card released the findings of a brain tissue analysis on Wednesday through the Concussion Legacy Foundation (CLF), in an effort to raise awareness of traumatic brain injuries among military service members. The Maine…

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Leaked internal documents from the World Professional Association for Transgender Health (WPATH), the leading global medical body behind developing “standards of care” for transgender treatments, show members improvising experimental treatments and consistently violating medical ethics and informed consent, according a report published Tuesday by the U.S.-based thinktank Environmental Progress. [RELATED: National Medical Association Concludes ‘Gender Affirming Care’ has ‘No demonstrable, long-term benefit’ to Adolescents with Gender Dysphoria…] The 242-page report analyzes hundreds of pages of internal posts and videos obtained by Environmental Progress founder and president Michael Shellenberger, and argues that WPATH, despite purporting to support “evidence-based” medical interventions, advocates…

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U.S. Attorney General Merrick Garland announced Wednesday that a Chinese National residing in California has been charged with four counts of theft of trade secrets in connection to an alleged plot to steal artificial intelligence (AI) technology from Google LLC (Google). [RELATED: Four Chinese Nationals Charged With Illegally Exporting U.S. Military Technology to Iran…] According to the indictment, Linwei Ding, aka Leon Ding, 38, of the People’s Republic of China, transferred Google trade secrets and other confidential information from Google’s network to his personal account while working at the company as a software engineer. Federal prosecutors allege that while Ding…

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Although incumbent President Joe Biden handily won Maine’s Democratic presidential primary election on Super Tuesday, he appears to have been opposed by a significant contingent of Portland voters protesting his administration’s handling of the ongoing Israel-Hamas war. [RELATED: Anti-Israel Protesters Defend Hamas “Resistance” by Blockading Traffic in Maine’s Biggest City…] According to unofficial election results posted Wednesday morning by the City of Portland, 20 percent of Democratic primary ballots in Portland were recorded as “blank” — a total of 1,024 votes. The number of “blank” ballots cast in Portland far surpassed those cast for President Biden’s declared primary opponent U.S.…

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Maine Senator Angus King, a self-described independent who caucuses with Democrats, has introduced legislation that would ban energy exports, which King has called the United States’ “principal advantage in the world economy,” to foreign adversaries. Sen. King joined with three Senate Democrats to introduce the “Protecting American Households from Rising Energy Costs Act,” which would ban the export of crude oil or liquefied natural gas (LNG) to China, Russia, Iran and North Korea. [RELATED: Angus King Denies Ukrainians Are Embezzling Any U.S. Tax Dollars, Claims Putin Will Invade Poland…] King, a member of the Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee,…

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Maine Public, a nonprofit news outlet funded in large part by taxpayer dollars, published a perfunctory article Tuesday covering the public hearing on the revamped transgender trafficking bill, LD 227, failing to mention the massive public turnout in opposition to the bill, and quoting only a Planned Parenthood spokesperson. [RELATED: Massive Turnout for Public Hearing on Last-Minute Bill Creating “Legal Right” to Abortion and “Gender-Affirming Care” in Maine…] Hundreds of activists showed up to the State House Tuesday afternoon to speak in opposition to LD 227, which would create new legal protections for abortions and so-called “gender-affirming health care,” including…

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U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) announced Monday that deportation officers in Boston have removed an unlawfully present Brazilian national who is wanted in Brazil for extortion, and who was charged locally with strangulation and assault and battery. [RELATED: ICE Boston Deports Brazilian Fugitive Wanted for Child Rape Who Fled to US Under Tourist Visa…] ICE Enforcement and Removal Operations (ERO) Boston agents deported 31-year-old Raul Thalison De Oliveira-Silva from the U.S. to Brazil on Feb. 23. Local authorities had previously arrested De Oliveira-Silva in Brockton, Mass. on Nov. 21, 2023, on charged of strangulation and assault and battery. According…

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A traffic stop in Portland Sunday resulted in a pair of arrests on drug trafficking charges after police discovered fentanyl and other narcotics in the vehicle, Portland Police announced Monday. [RELATED: Maine Reports Nearly 10,000 Drug Overdoses in 2023, 16 Percent Decrease in Fatal Overdoses from 2022…] Police said they conducted a traffic stop on Pearl Street in Portland on Sunday, March 3, at about 12:30 a.m. According to police, during the stop it was discovered that one of the occupants of the vehicle had multiple warrants out for his arrest. A search of the vehicle led to the discovery…

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A Massachusetts man pleaded guilty Friday in U.S. District Court in Portland to supplying a Biddeford couple with fentanyl to sell in southern Maine. [RELATED: Susan Collins Calls for Action to Address Migrant, Fentanyl Crises in Senate Floor Remarks…] Darwin Mateo, 24, of Massachusetts, pleaded guilty to possessing fentanyl with intent to distribute, and faces up to 20 years in prison and a fine of up to $1 million, followed by a minimum of three years and up to a lifetime of supervised release. According to court records, law enforcement encountered Mateo while executing a search warrant at a Biddeford residence…

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When speaking about the issue of large numbers of migrants coming to Maine, Portland Mayor Mark Dion told Matt Gagnon on WGAN Morning News Monday that migrants come to the U.S. border with the address of the city’s homeless shelter already in their cell phones. [RELATED: “People see us as different”: Portland Officials Bemoan State Lawmakers’ Reluctance to Fund City’s Homeless Shelters and Welfare Programs…] Mayor Dion told Gagnon that Portland has seen a “whole different level of immigration” than in past decades, when immigrants would be met in the city by sponsoring families and were more readily assimilated. Dion…

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After the United States Supreme Court ruled unanimously Monday that individual states do not have the authority to bar former President Donald Trump from appearing on their ballots, Maine State Rep. John Andrews (R-Paris) is renewing his effort to open an impeachment inquiry into Secretary of State Shenna Bellows. All nine Justices — including liberal Justices Sonia Sotomayor, Elena Kagan and Ketanji Brown Jackson — agreed that states do not have the power to enforce the 14th Amendment’s “Insurrection Clause” against candidates for federal office. [RELATED: SCOTUS Unanimously Rules That States Cannot Disqualify Trump from the Ballot…] “After the SCOTUS…

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Three people were arrested on drug trafficking charges after police seized more than $5,600 worth of fentanyl during a search at a Rumford hotel, according to the Rumford Police Department. [RELATED: Maine Reports Nearly 10,000 Drug Overdoses in 2023, 16 Percent Decrease in Fatal Overdoses from 2022…] Rumford Police say officers responded to the Best Western Plus hotel on Prospect Avenue in Rumford on Thursday, Feb. 29, after receiving a tip about possible drug activity occurring in one of the hotel rooms. Upon arrival, police confirmed that three suspects with prior convictions along with another individual were sharing a room…

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Portland Police announced Sunday that they have arrested a suspect in relation to a homicide that occurred over the weekend in the area of Union Station Plaza. Just after 1 a.m. on Saturday, March 2, Portland Police responded to a report that a person had been shot in the area of 263 St. John Street. The victim was identified as 30-year-old Raoul Mapendo Tshiyuka of Portland, and was transported to the Maine Medical Center, where he later died, police said. An autopsy performed by the Office of the Chief Medical Examiner determined that Tshiyuka died from a gunshot wound, and…

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U.S. Immigrations and Customs Enforcement (ICE) announced Friday that a Brazilian national who fled to the U.S. under a tourist visa to avoid serving a prison sentence for child rape was deported back to Brazil in late January. [RELATED: Guatemalan Illegal Alien Convicted of Sexually Assaulting a Child Arrested by ICE After Being Released by MA Court…] ICE Enforcement and Removal Operations (ERO) Boston had previously arrested the Brazilian fugitive, 62-year-old Edimir Gustavo Eckelberg, in Tewksbury, Mass. on Nov. 28, 2023. Eckelberg had fled from Brazil to New York under a tourist immigration visa in April 2023, following his conviction…

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U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) announced Friday that the agency successfully stopped an estimated 561,000 fentanyl pills worth more than $11 million from being smuggled into the U.S. from Mexico. [RELATED: Susan Collins Calls for Action to Address Migrant, Fentanyl Crises in Senate Floor Remarks…] According to CBP, on Sunday, Feb. 25 at approximately 8:20 p.m. a CBP K-9 unit encountered a 37-year-old man driving a 2008 sedan and seeking admission into the U.S. from Mexico at the San Ysidro Point of Entry in San Diego, California. After the CBP K-9 unit alerted officers to the glove compartment area…

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Missouri Attorney General Andrew Bailey announced Thursday that he has filed a lawsuit against Planned Parenthood Great Plains (PPGP) for assisting minors with traveling out of state to obtain abortions without parental consent. The 18-page complaint, filed Thursday in the 13th Judicial Circuit Court of Missouri, comes after an undercover investigative video published by Project Veritas in December appeared to show Planned Parenthood staff discussing how the organization assists out-of-state patients in arranging transportation to obtain abortions. https://twitter.com/AGAndrewBailey/status/1763213925368185107?s=20 “Recently, officers, employees, or agents of PPGP admitted on video to an undercover reporter that PPGP ‘every day’ facilitates minors obtaining abortions…

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A Maine man is facing up to ten years in prison after being indicted on federal charges for allegedly lacing ice cream with tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) at a New Hampshire cafe. Marc Flore, 43, was indicted on one count of tampering with consumer products, Assistant U.S. Attorney for the District of New Hampshire Jay McCormack announced Thursday. In charging documents, federal prosecutors accuse Flore of lacing a batch of coffee-Oreo flavored ice cream with THC — a schedule I controlled drug that is the psychoactive chemical of cannabis — at the Roots Local Cafe and Catering in Newmarket, New Hampshire in…

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Two people that were found deceased in a residence in Milford on Wednesday have had their deaths ruled as suicides by the Office of the Chief Medical Examiner in Augusta. On Wednesday, Feb. 28, at about 5 p.m., the Penobscot County Sheriff’s Office responded to a residence in Milford for a well-being check. Upon arrival at the residence, deputies discovered two deceased individuals. The Penobscot County Sheriff’s Office considered the deaths suspicious and investigated the incident alongside the Maine State Police Major crimes Unit North. The two deceased individuals were transported to the Office of the Chief Medical Examiner in…

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A commission dedicated to advancing far left ideology within Maine’s state government is having trouble coming up with an anti-corruption policy. The chief reason? The commission is comprised almost of exclusively of employees of nonprofit organizations that seek taxpayer-funded grants from the commission for themselves and their allies. Maine’s so-called “Permanent Commission on the Status of Racial, Indigenous & Tribal Populations (PCRITP)” — the brainchild of House Speaker Rachel Talbot Ross (D-Portland) — was originally intended to rename rivers, creeks, and mountains in Maine that still had offensive names. Rather than quickly accomplish that simple task, the organization has morphed…

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Several large Maine hospitals are not in compliance with federal transparency rules regarding online pricing and services information, according to a new report from the healthcare price transparency advocacy organization PatientRightsAdvocate.org (PRA). The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS), a federal agency within the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services in charge of administering the Medicare and Medicaid programs, established rules in January 2021 requiring hospitals to publish clear and accessible pricing information about the items and services they provide. The rules are aimed at making it easier for consumers to shop around and compare prices at various…

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A Maine Department of Health and Human Services (Maine DHHS) caseworker allegedly used her position to extort sex from a father trying to reunite with his children, according to a lawsuit filed Tuesday. [RELATED: Maine DHHS Announces New Child Welfare Director, Vows “Rapid Management Audit”…] The 35-page lawsuit, filed in U.S. District Court in Portland, alleges that Maine DHHS caseworker Morgan Polky used her position helping father Kerry Ross regain custody of his children to coerce the man into sex and to send her nude photos. Polky allegedly used her position to put Ross into situations in which he feared…

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Members of the Portland City Council expressed their frustration during a Tuesday committee meeting toward Maine lawmakers who do not want to use taxpayer funds on the city’s outsized expenditures toward homeless shelters and welfare programs. [RELATED: Portland Budget Woe: Decline in State, Federal Funding, Staffing Shortages, Shelter for Homeless and Asylum Seekers…] The comments were made during the City Council’s Legislative and Nominating Committee meeting on Tuesday, Feb. 27, made up of Portland Mayor Mark Dion and City Councilors Pious Ali and Kate Sykes. The Legislative and Nominating Committee is responsible for making decisions regarding state and federal legislation…

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U.S. Senator Angus King (I-Maine) and Democratic Sen. Jack Reed of Rhode Island sent a letter to President Joe Biden Wednesday calling for a U.S. Navy hospital ship to be deployed to treat Gazan civilians impacted by the ongoing conflict between Israel and the Islamist terrorist organization Hamas. [RELATED: King Praises Embattled UNRWA, Calls for More Aid to Gaza…] Since the Palestinian terrorist group Hamas attacked Israel on Oct. 7, 2023, killing approximately 1,200 people and taking about 250 hostages, Israel has engaged in an extensive bombardment and ground invasion of the Gaza Strip with the objective of destroying Hamas.…

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A Maine man was sentenced in U.S. District Court in Bangor Wednesday to nearly five years in prison for trafficking fentanyl and other drugs through Somerset County. Cody Mosher, 29, was sentenced to 57 months in prison followed by four years of supervised release for possession with intent to distribute fentanyl. According to court records, in January 2023, Mosher led law enforcement on a high-speed chase through Norridgewock and Madison after Somerset County deputies stopped his vehicle and attempted to execute a search warrant and arrest warrant. After the chase, Mosher was placed under arrest and his vehicle was searched,…

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In advance of a Friday government funding deadline, Democratic Maine Congressman Jared Golden called for a bipartisan Congressional coalition to “sideline hardliners” who he says want a government shutdown. [RELATED: Golden Pitches Compromise Border Security and $66 Billion Foreign Aid Package on CBS’ Face the Nation…] Rep. Golden’s Tuesday statement came on the heels of Congressional leadership of both parties convening at the White House to meet with President Joe Biden regarding spending negotiations. Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.) told reporters outside the White House following the Tuesday meeting that it was “productive and intense.” “We made it so…

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U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) agents on Tuesday announced the arrest of a Guatemalan illegal alien recently convicted of sexually assaulting a child after he was released by a Massachusetts court. [RELATED: Haitian Illegal Alien Charged with Raping Developmentally Disabled Person Arrested by ICE After Being Released…] ICE said the Guatemalan national illegally entered the U.S. April 2011 at an unknown location, without be inspected or admitted by immigration officials. The 34-year-old Guatemalan was convicted in January of indecent assault and battery on a child under the age of 14, and a separate offense of assault in battery, in…

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Maine’s Permanent Commission on the Status of Racial, Indigenous & Tribal Populations (PCRITP) is slated to implement a new conflict of interest policy after the Maine Wire reported that the Commission granted $12,000 to an organization co-founded by the sister of House Speaker and PCRITP co-chair Rachel Talbot Ross (D-Portland). [RELATED: Maine Speaker’s Racial Equity Board Gave Her Sister’s Nonprofit $12,000 for Black History Month…] Earlier this month, the Maine Wire revealed that PCRITP granted $12,000 to the Portland-based nonprofit organization Cross Cultural Community Services (CCCS) for a Black History Month event. The vendor contact listed on the Commission’s $12,000 grant is…

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Maine Attorney General Aaron Frey (D) announced Tuesday that he has filed a complaint under the Maine Civil Rights act against a Lewiston woman accused of a racially motivated assault. According to the complaint, filed in Androscoggin County Superior Court, 65-year-old Andrea Ouellette of Lewiston confronted a 31-year-old black man outside while he was speaking with his neighbor in November 2023. The complaint alleges that Ouellette called the victim a racial epithet and threw a pumpkin at his head, causing him to suffer a broken tooth, broken nose, and a swollen face, requiring surgery as a result. After the assault,…

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The Portland City Council’s Housing and Economic Development Committee recently released a draft of their 2024 Work Plan, which includes exploring the implementation of a universal basic income (UBI) and a possible increase of the city’s minimum wage to $20 per hour. [RELATED: Global Warming Will Send Thousands of Migrants to Maine, Claims Portland’s Sustainability Director…] The Housing and Economic Development Committee is made up of Portland City Councilors Pious Ali, Roberto Rodriguez, Regina Phillips, and Kate Sykes. Listed on the committee’s drafted Work Plan, under the heading “Economic Development Policy,” is “Implement a Universal Basic Income pilot project” and…

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Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton announced Monday that he has filed a lawsuit against a major pornography distribution company for allegedly violating a state law that requires age verification measures to protect minors from being exposed to obscene sexual materials online. The Texas law in question, HB 1181, came into effect in Sept. 2023, and requires websites hosting adult content to verify whether a user is 18 years or older. The statute also requires that pornography websites include warnings of “the harms associated with viewing such material, including potential addiction, impaired brain development and function, and other emotional and mental…

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A Maine Man was arrested late Monday night after allegedly exposing himself to students on the Bates College campus in Lewiston, according to police. Lewiston Police say they were called to the Bates College campus on Monday, Feb. 26 at approximately 11:47 p.m. for a report of a male exposing himself to students. After speaking with witnesses and reviewing surveillance footage from the area, with the assistance of the Androscoggin County Sheriff’s Office K-9 team, police located 55-year-old Robert Allen Burgess Jr. of Mechanic Falls hiding nearby, police said. Robert Burgess Jr., 55, of Mechanic Falls | Source: Lewiston Police…

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Maine Democratic Congressman Jared Golden and a bipartisan group of his House colleagues are pushing for the expedited consideration of their compromise border security and foreign aid package bill. The package was introduced earlier this month as an alternative to the $95 billion foreign aid package passed by the Senate and deemed dead on arrival by House Speaker Mike Johnson (R-La.). The “Defending Borders, Defending Democracies Act,” spearheaded by Reps. Golden and Brian Fitzpatrick (R-Pa.), proposes $66 billion in defense spending to support Ukraine, Israel, and Taiwan, alongside the implementation of a handful of border security measures. [RELATED: Jared Golden…

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A Salvadoran MS-13 gang member who has been previously removed from the U.S. three times and is wanted for murder in El Salvador was arrested by federal immigration enforcement officers in Massachusetts last week. U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) agents arrested the unlawfully present 44-year-old Salvadoran fugitive in Foxboro, Mass. on Monday, Feb. 19. According to ICE, the Salvadoran national unlawfully entered the U.S. for the first time in March 2001, and was deported in January 2007. The MS-13 gang member was deported for a second time in July 2010, and a third time in October 2012, after unlawfully…

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A South Portland man is facing up to 55 years in prison after pleading guilty to gun and drug trafficking charges. Joshua Hopkins, 33, of South Portland, pleaded guilty Friday in U.S. District Court in Portland to possession of a firearm by a prohibited person and possession of fentanyl and cocaine with intent to distribute. According to court records, Hopkins was found by police at a South Portland hotel in April 2023 with an active state arrest warrant. A search of Hopkins’ backpack revealed multiple scales, a single round of 7.62 mm x 39 mm ammunition, a blender that contained suspected…

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Maine Attorney General Aaron Frey has determined that the use of deadly force by a South Portland Police Officer that resulted in the death of a 47-year-old man in August 2023 was done in self-defense and was justified. In his Feb. 17 letter to South Portland Police Chief Daniel Ahern, Attorney General Frey detailed his investigation and legal review of the the Aug. 25, 2023 use of deadly force incident. South Portland Police officers Anthony Verville and Akos Szekely responded to the area of Summit Terrace in South Portland shortly after 4 a.m. on Aug. 25, 202 after receiving complaints…

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Maine Democratic lawmakers on the Legislative Council voted Thursday to reject an after-deadline emergency bill proposal that would restrict the use of public school bathrooms by biological sex. The requested bill, entitled “An Act to Create a Safe Environment in Public School Bathrooms by Restricting Their Use to Persons of the Same Biological Sex,” was introduced by Rep. Katrina Smith (R-Palermo). Asst. House Minority Leader Amy Arata (R-New Gloucester) presented the bill on behalf of Rep. Smith to the Legislative Council Thursday. Rep. Arata pointed to an ongoing situation at Brewer High School that involves a student using the bathroom…

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Portland Police say a pair of male teens are responsible for an attempted carjacking and robbery of a 64-year-old woman Thursday on Marginal Way. Police say they were called to a parking area in the area of 161 Marginal Way in Portland shortly after 10 a.m. Thursday. According to police, a 64-year-old woman was sitting in her car in the parking area when two male juveniles entered her vehicle and threatened her, with one juvenile in the front seat wielding a knife. The woman was robbed before she exited the car, and when the pair of teens were unsuccessful in…

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Border officials in Texas made the largest-ever seizure of methamphetamine at a port of entry when they interdicted over 13,000 pounds of the illegal drug hidden in a trailer crossing a bridge over the Rio Grande last weekend. [RELATED: DEA Administrator Briefs Susan Collins on Illegal Chinese Marijuana Grows, Increased Opioid and Meth Use in Maine…] On Sunday, Feb. 18, U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) officers at the Camino Real International Bridge in Eagle Pass, Texas conducted a secondary inspection of a tractor trailer that appeared to be carrying a shipment of a swine drying agent used on newborn…

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Three Mainers are facing drug trafficking charges after leading police on a chase down Interstate 95 Wednesday morning, according to the Penobscot County Sheriff’s Office. Police say Penobscot Sheriff’s deputies initiated a traffic stop on a vehicle in the area of Littlefield Avenue in Hermon at about 10:42 a.m. Wednesday for a traffic violation. The vehicle failed to stop for the deputies, and led police on a pursuit northbound on I-95 before eventually pulling over near the area of the Broadway Exit in Bangor, police said. Police seized 142 grams of crack cocaine and 11 grams of fentanyl during the…

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Independent presidential candidate Robert F. Kennedy, Jr. has filed a lawsuit against Maine Secretary of State Shenna Bellows over a restriction on campaigns collecting signatures at polling locations during the March 5 primary election. [RELATED: RFK Jr. Collects Necessary Signatures to Appear on New Hampshire Ballot…] In an email obtained by the Maine Wire, team Kennedy attorney Paul Rossi said Bellows is “out of control” and a “political hack without any regard for rights guaranteed under the Equal Protection Clause of the 14th Amendment.” The federal lawsuit, filed Wednesday in the District of Maine and assigned to District Judge John…

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The Portland City Council will vote Monday on whether to provide a $1.2 million loan to a planned affordable housing project in the city’s Libbytown neighborhood. The project, 45 Dougherty, is set to be be located on a portion of city-owned property at 43 and 91 Douglass St., adjacent to the Dougherty Fields complex, and will consist of 63 units of rental housing. All of the project’s units will be affordable to households earning at or below 60 percent of the area median income — $56,820 for a 2-person household or $70,980 for a 4-person household. According to a city…

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The leadership Political Action Committee (PAC) led by Maine House Speaker Rachel Talbot Ross (D-Portland) ended 2023 in a deficit after spending tens of thousands of dollars on overseas travel and meals at various restaurants, according to filings with the Maine Ethics Commission. [RELATED: Maine Speaker’s Racial Equity Board Gave Her Sister’s Nonprofit $12,000 for Black History Month…] Under Ethics Commission rules, leadership PACs — committees led or controlled by a current member of the Legislature — are not restricted in how they spends their funds, except for a prohibition on compensating the legislator or members of their immediate family.…

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A federal jury in Washington, D.C. convicted two Chinese nationals Tuesday for participating in a multimillion-dollar scheme to defraud Apple Inc. out of 5,000 iPhones. [RELATED: Four Chinese Nationals Charged With Illegally Exporting U.S. Military Technology to Iran…] Haotian Sun (aka Hao Sun, Jack Sun, and Frank Sun), 33, of Baltimore, Maryland, and Pengfei Xue, 33, of Germantown, Maryland were convicted of mail fraud and conspiracy to commit mail fraud. According to court documents, Sun and Xue, along with other co-conspirators, submitted counterfeit iPhones with spoofed serial numbers to Apple for repair, aiming to get Apple retail stores and Apple…

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Auburn Police announced Tuesday that a man has been arrested on drug trafficking charges after a search warrant executed at the man’s home and business led to the seizure of large quantities of narcotics and firearms. Auburn Police say they conducted a traffic stop at about 1 p.m. Tuesday in connection to an ongoing narcotics investigation. The operator of the vehicle, 43-year-old Darren Douin of Auburn, was found to be in possession of narcotics and a firearm, police said. Darren Douin, 43, of Auburn | Source: Auburn Police Department Based on the evidence obtained during the traffic stops, Auburn Police…

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The U.S. Election Assistance Commission (EAC) voted unanimously last week to allow election officials to allocate federal funds toward countering disinformation in elections caused by artificial intelligence (AI). The decision comes after U.S. Senators Susan Collins (R-Maine) and Amy Klobuchar (D-Minn.) sent a letter in January calling on the commission to assist state and local election officials in addressing deceptive AI-generated content. [RELATED: Maine Bans Artificial Intelligence Use by State Agencies for 6 Months Due to ‘Cybersecurity Risks’…] The bipartisan duo’s letter followed reports of an apparent robocall in the lead-up to the New Hampshire primary election that used AI…

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The Oxford County Republican Committee announced Tuesday that they plan to host a debate for the 2024 Maine Second Congressional District Primary scheduled for Saturday, April 20, a week ahead of the Republican state convention. The debate, which aims to draw up to 300 attendees, is set to be held at the American Legion Jackson-Silver Post 68 Hall in Greenwood, and to be moderated by Steve Robinson, Editor-in-Chief of the Maine Wire. Both candidates, State Reps. Mike Soboleski (R-Phillips) and Austin Theriault (R-Fort Kent), have been invited to attend the debate to answer questions before CD-2 voters in Oxford County.…

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A Portland man was sentenced Tuesday in U.S. District Court in Portland to 16 years in prison for drug trafficking and for sexually exploiting a 14-year-old child he met online. U.S. District Judge Nancy Torresen sentenced 32-year-old Sebastian Demers to 15 years on the child exploitation count, and one year on the drug trafficking count, with the sentences to be served consecutively followed by 10 years of supervised release. Demers was also ordered to pay the victim and the victim’s family $15,843.27 in restitution. He pleaded guilty on Dec. 9, 2022. According to court records, Demers befriended a 14-year-old child online…

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A Maine school district has agreed to change how it promotes “affinity groups” for students of color after receiving pushback from an anti-critical race theory activist organization. [RELATED: Maine Private School Teacher Was Fired After Criticizing Critical Race Theory and Posting Jordan Peterson Videos…] In December, the New York-based Foundation Against Intolerance & Racism (FAIR) sent a letter to Mt. Ararat High School Principal Chris Hoffman over concerns related to how the school was marketing skin-color based affinity groups. FAIR’s complaint centered around the Topsham school’s promotion of their “Students of Color Coalition.” The nonprofit organization cited a notice to…

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Portland Police announced Tuesday that a man has been arrested in connection to a January assault and home invasion on Congress Street. On Jan. 19th, at around 3:18 a.m., police responded to a report of an assault and home invasion at 723 Congress St. in Portland. Upon arrival, a 62-year-old female told police that someone broke into her apartment and severely beat her, Portland Police said. Following a month-long investigation, Portland Police arrested 53-year-old Stephen Brichetto on Monday, Feb. 19. Brichetto was charged with Aggravated Assault and Burglary and booked at Cumberland County Jail, according to Portland Police spokesperson Brad…

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A Portland man has been arrested in connection to a Monday stabbing on Portland Street. Portland Police responded to 5 Portland St. on Monday, Feb. 19 at approximately 11:22 a.m. for a report of a stabbing. Upon arrival, a 36-year-old man was found lying on the ground with an apparent stab wound, police said. The man was transported to Maine Medical Center with non-life threatening injuries. Just over an hour after launching their search for the assailant, Portland Police located the suspect at 1 City Center. Eliot-James Nelson, 33, of Portland, was taken into custody after a brief struggle and…

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Lewiston Police are investigating a shooting that occurred early Sunday morning at a Pine St. apartment building. Police say they were dispatched just before 5 a.m. Sunday to the area of 189 Pine St. in Lewiston for a report of multiple gunshots fired from outside a multi-unit apartment building. Upon arrival, officers discovered that numerous shots had been fired into an apartment, and located shell casings outside the building. Lewiston Police say the suspect may have fled in a vehicle following the shooting, and that the shooting was not random but directed toward a specific apartment. No one was injured…

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A Mexican national who was previously removed from the United States twice was sentenced Friday to 27 months in prison for illegally crossing the U.S.-Canada border in Hamlin, Maine. Alberto Beltran-Martinez, 44, of Mexico pleaded guilty to entering the U.S. after a prior removal on Sept. 25, 2023, and has been incarcerated since he was arrested on April 29, 2023. According to court records, Beltran-Martinez and six other individuals were pulled over in Hamlin near the U.S.-Canada border by a U.S. Border Patrol agent from the Van Buren Border Patrol Station. The U.S. Attorney’s Office for the District of Maine…

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A two-vehicle accident in Eustis early Saturday left two seriously injured and resulted in three undocumented Ecuadorian nationals being taken into custody by Border Patrol, according to police. Franklin County Sheriff’s deputies and Maine State Police responded to the crash around 8:30 a.m. on Saturday, Feb. 10 on The Arnold Trail Road off state Route 27 in Eustis. According to police, 28-year-old Luis Mayancela-Yunga of Biddeford was driving a silver 2010 GMC passenger van south transporting undocumented individuals from Ecuador, when he lost control of the van on the icy road and skidded sideways across the centerline. The van collided…

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A Democratic Kansas State Representative criticized a bill currently being considered by the Kansas State Legislature that would ban the purchase of candy and soft drinks with Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) benefits by saying her obesity was not caused by eating sugary foods. SNAP, formerly known as the Food Stamp Program, is a federally-funded welfare program that provides low-income families with assistance to buy “nutritious food essential to health and well-being.” [RELATED: Maine DHHS Indiscriminately Issues $13.5 Million in Food Stamps for Those Affected by the December Storm…] The bill in question, HB 2673, would direct the secretary of…

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The U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) filed a lawsuit against the State of Tennessee and the Tennessee Bureau of Investigation (TBI) Thursday alleging that the state’s aggravated prostitution statute discriminates against prostitutes with human immunodeficiency virus (HIV). Tennessee’s aggravated prostitution statute, which dates back to 1991, makes it a Class C felony when a person who is knowingly infected with HIV engages in sexual activity as a business, or seeks to be hired for sexual activity in a house of prostitution or public place. The DOJ alleges that the enforcement of Tennessee’s aggravated prostitution statute violates the Americans with Disabilities…

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A 6-year-old missing child from Iowa has been found safe on Peaks Island off the coast of Portland. Avery Doherty, 6, of Ames, Iowa was found by police on Peaks Island on Wednesday, Feb. 14. Ames Police said that Esther Bender, the child’s mother, unlawfully removed Avery from Iowa on or about Oct. 14, 2023, in violation of a court order. Bender, 41, was arrested on Peaks Island and charged with Violation of a Custodial Order, a serious misdemeanor under Iowa state law. “We want to that the Story County Sheriff’s Office, Maine State Police, Portland (ME) Police Department and…

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U.S. Attorney for the District of Maine Darcie McElwee announced Wednesday that her office collected a total of $24.4 million from civil and criminal actions during fiscal year 2023. Nearly all of the $23 million collected by the Maine U.S. Attorney’s Office from civil actions was the result of a $22.5 million settlement in July 2023 in United State of America v. Martin’s Point Health Care, Inc. [PAGING DARCIE: The Mortgage Broker Troy Jackson Threw Under the Bus Denies Wrongdoing: “Something seems a little fishy here”…] The settlement with Portland-Based Martin’s Point was the largest Medicare fraud settlement in state…

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Maine Gov. Janet Mills has proposed creating an “Office of New Americans” to bring 75,000 low-skill workers to Maine, but a new dire warning from the City of Portland’s Sustainability Director suggests the new office may be unnecessary. That’s because rising temperatures caused by global climate change will lead thousands of migrants from developing countries to relocate to Maine without additional incentives and recruitment efforts. City of Portland Sustainability Director Troy Moon says that climate change could drive additional refugees from Africa, Asia and Central America to migrate to Portland. Moon described the phenomena in his “Resilience and Climate Vulnerability”…

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U.S. Border Patrol (USBP) Chief Jason Owens has appointed Juan Bernal as the new Chief Patrol Agent (CPA) of Maine’s Houlton Sector, which encompasses the entire state and the northeastern corner of the U.S.-Canada border, as well as Maine’s sprawling coastline. [RELATED: Border Patrol Apprehends 20 Romanian Nationals Who Illegally Crossed US-Canada Border into Hodgdon…] Chief Bernal, prior to assuming command as the Houlton Sector’s 28th CPA on Feb. 12, was the Acting CPA of the Del Rio Sector — a 242-mile stretch of the U.S.-Mexico border. Newly-appointed Houlton Sector CPA Juan G. Bernal | Source: U.S. CBP “It is…

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Three people were arrested Wednesday after a search of a Pittsfield home by Maine State Police led to the discovery large quantities of illegal drugs and multiple firearms. State Troopers executed a search warrant at 693 Canaan Rd. in Pittsfield at around 5:30 a.m. on Wednesday, Feb. 14. The search led to the seizure of 32 grams of cocaine base, 5.5 grams of fentanyl, oxycodone, 13 pounds of processed marijuana, prescription pills and firearms. Source: Maine State Police The owner of the Pittsfield home, 46-year-old Michael Wyllie, was arrested on charges of Aggravated Trafficking of Fentanyl, Cocaine Base, and Marijuana,…

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Maine Senator Angus King (I) is calling for the U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT) to protect humorous and witty highway signs that he says “breaks through the traffic jam of information” and are more memorable to drivers. In his pun-filled letter to DOT Secretary Pete Buttigieg, King quipped that he is writing to ensure that with Buttigieg “at the wheel” the DOT is not “driving distracted in our nation’s quest for safer streets.” Sen. King’s letter comes after the U.S. Federal Highway Administration released regulations in January strongly recommending against overhead electronic highway signage with quirky messages or pop culture…

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The Portland Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) has released a 2023 year-in-review report on the city’s response to homelessness, detailing demographic data and statistics related to residents of the Homeless Services Center (HSC), overdoses, housing, and other social services. [RELATED: Portland’s Homeless Services Center Reports High Number of “Out-of-State” Intakes…] Portland HHS Interim Director Shaza Stevenson presented the report during the Portland HHS and Public Safety Committee meeting Tuesday afternoon. Throughout 2023, the HSC received a total of 1,252 unique guests — broken up into 887 males, 357 females, five transgender individuals and three “Gender Nonconforming guests,” according…

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Maine Gov. Janet Mills signed into law Tuesday a bill that grants the Independent Commission investigating the Oct. 25, 2023 mass shootings in Lewiston subpoena power. [RELATED: Mills’ Lewiston Shooting Commission Seeks Power to Force Testimony from U.S. Military Personnel…] The bipartisan legislation, which was sponsored by all four of Maine’s legislative leadership and passed the Legislature unanimously Tuesday, will grant the Independent Commission the power to obtain documents and compel witness testimony in the course of their investigation. “With my signature, the bill is now law, and the Independent Commission now has the power of subpoena,” Gov. Mills said Tuesday.…

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A taxpayer-funded commission originally proposed and currently co-chaired by Maine House Speaker Rachel Talbot Ross (D-Portland) is celebrating Black History Month by giving a $12,000 contract to the nonprofit founded by the Speaker’s sister, Portland City Councilor Regina Phillips. The “Permanent Commission on the Status of Racial, Indigenous & Tribal Populations” (PCRITP), which is co-chaired by Speaker Talbot Ross, awarded the chunk of change to Phillips’ group as payment for a Black History Month event in which another of Ross’s sisters is listed as a speaker. Neither Talbot Ross nor any PCRITP representative disclosed the familial ties between the grant…

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Maine Republican lawmakers held a press conference Tuesday on the state’s homelessness crisis and spending related to providing taxpayer-funded housing for asylum-seeking migrants. “These costs have largely been hidden from the public and are now being exposed in an effort to demand accountability and a results-driven plan,” the Republican lawmakers said in a Tuesday press release. “Taxpayer money is being diverted away from pressing state needs as Mainers languish on housing lists for years or waiting lists for nursing homes.” The legislative Republican’s presentation included graphics showing how homelessness and drug overdoses have skyrocketed in recent years as the state…

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President Joe Biden met with the chairman of a Chinese government linked energy firm that later wired millions of dollars to Hunter Biden and his business partners, an ex-associate of the Biden family testified to congressional investigators. [RELATED: Biden Campaign Joins TikTok Despite Persistent Security Concerns…] The House Oversight and Judiciary Committees on Tuesday released the transcript of their closed-door interview with former Biden family associate Rob Walker as part of the House impeachment inquiry against President Biden. That inquiry is examining whether Biden inappropriately engaged in business dealings with foreign companies, including companies linked to adversarial foreign governments. Walker…

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A homeless man was arrested on Riverside Street in Portland Sunday on charges of drug trafficking, refusing to submit to arrest, and assaulting an officer, according to Portland Police. Portland Police say they received a report of a person refusing to leave the Ramada Plaza hotel at 155 Riverside St. at 1:16 p.m. on Sunday, Feb. 11. Upon arrival, the suspect had fled the area, but was tracked down within minutes to a parking area near 242 Riverside St., police said. According to Portland Police, a physical altercation occurred when trying to take the suspect into custody. 29-year-old Scott Thomas,…

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Portland’s Homeless Services Center (HSC) received a total of 178 intakes in January, including two dozen homeless individuals from out-of-state, according to the city’s Emergency Shelter Assessment Committee (ESAC) January shelter statistics report. [RELATED: Portland Budget Woe: Decline in State, Federal Funding, Staffing Shortages, Shelter for Homeless and Asylum Seekers…] According to the ESAC report, out of the 178 intakes into the HSC last month, 24 homeless individuals came from out-of-state and 81 came from other Maine town. Just 71 — less than half — were categorized as Portland residents. Throughout January the HSC had an average of 240 homeless…

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According to the most recent state data, there were nearly 10,000 drug overdoses in Maine during 2023, though the number of fatal overdoses fell by 16 percent compared to 2022. [RELATED: Maine Lawmakers Consider Decriminalizing Possession of Hard Drugs and Paraphernalia…] The December Monthly Overdose Report from the Maine Drug Data Hub reported that there were a total of 607 fatal drug overdoses in the state in 2023, down from 723 in 2022. The Maine Drug Data Hub is a collaboration between several state departments, including the Maine Attorney General’s Office, the governor’s office, and the University of Maine. The combined…

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The Penobscot Sheriff’s Office is investigating a fire at an abandoned home in Eddington that was allegedly started by a group of juveniles. The Sheriff’s Office says they received a report shortly after 3 p.m. Wednesday that a group of juveniles were observed walking into one of two abandoned homes on Clewleyville Road in Eddington. The two adjacent properties have been targets of vandalism in the past and have been unkept by the property owners for several years, according to the Sheriff’s Office. A deputy sheriff alongside other deputies responded to the report, and upon arrival the deputies observed subjects…

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A co-founder and former CEO of a sustainable fuel company pleaded guilty Thursday to wire fraud in connection to a multimillion-dollar embezzlement scheme. Bryan Sherbacow, 55, of Charleston, South Carolina, and Washington, D.C. was indicted by federal prosecutors in May 2023 for allegedly embezzling at least $5.9 million and defrauding investors out of $15 million when CEO of the biomass aviation fuel startup Alder Fuels. [RELATED: Maine Congresswoman Who Once Paid FEC Fines for Undisclosed Private Jet Trips Mends Staffer’s Jeans to Stop Global Warming…] In court documents, federal prosecutors alleged Sherbacow defrauded the company he co-founded between 2021 and…

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A U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) K-9 unit at Boston’s Logan Airport thwarted an attempt to illegally import four dehydrated monkey corpses, the agency announced Friday. According to the CBP, an individual returning to the U.S. on a flight from Paris after a visit to the Democratic Republic of Congo was sniffed out during a preliminary baggage screening by the CBP K-9 “Buddey” on Jan. 8. CBP K-9 Buddey | Source: U.S. CBP When questioned about the contents of the bag, the individual declared that it only contained dried fish, CBP said. Upon a search of the luggage, a…

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Maine’s liberal Members of Congress are either keeping quiet, pointing at former President Donald Trump, or defending President Joe Biden after the Commander-in-Chief delivered a confusing and widely-panned press conference Thursday evening. The presser came in response to a Department of Justice report that said the Special Counsel investigating Biden’s mishandling of classified documents would not seek charges — but only because Biden’s memory was too poor for him to stand trial. Special Counsel Robert Hur, who was leading a probe into President Joe Biden’s handling of classified materials, released a 388-page report Thursday finding that Biden “willfully retained and…

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U.S. Senator from Maine Susan Collins was one of four Republican Senators to join Democrats in voting in favor of the $118 billion border and foreign aid package in key vote Wednesday. The long-awaited bill, the product of months of bipartisan negotiations, was blocked by the Senate in a 49 to 50 vote. [RELATED: ‘Dead on Arrival:’ Senate Border and Foreign Aid Package Faces Immediate Backlash…] Sen. Collins, Vice Chair of the Senate Appropriations Committee and Subcommittee on Defense, played a role in shaping certain provisions in the legislation, including one that would have granted asylum-seeking migrants quicker access to…

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Maine’s Permanent Commission on Racial, Indigenous & Tribal Populations (PCRITP) have released a report detailing the legislative initiatives they are supporting for the second session of the 131st Legislature. The PCRITP was created by the Legislature in 2021 and tasked with “eliminating disparities for historically disadvantaged racial, indigenous and tribal populations in the State.” In practice, PCRITP has become a taxpayer-funded lobbyist organization for left-wing ideology and Critical Race Theory (CRT). [RELATED: Maine Racial Equity Commission Banned White People from Talking at Lewiston Public Meeting…] The January report, entitled “Justice for all,” centers around the state racial equity commission’s advocacy…

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The American College of Pediatricians (ACPeds) released a statement Wednesday following a review of 60 studies that concluded “social transition, puberty blockers, and cross-sex hormones have no demonstrable, long-term benefit on psychosocial well-being of adolescents with gender dysphoria.” The ACPeds paper, entitled “Mental Health in Adolescents with Incongruence of Gender Identity and Biological Sex,” details how adolescents diagnosed with gender dysphoria have an increased incidence of mental health issues both before and after receiving “gender affirming therapy.” [RELATED: Maine Governor Approves Bill Allowing 16-Year-Olds to Get Sex Change Drugs Over Parents’ Objections…] “Gender-affirming care” is an umbrella term encompassing cross-sex hormones,…

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Portland Police are investigating a shootout between the occupants of two cars that occurred Tuesday evening in the city’s Sagamore Village neighborhood. Police responded to the area of 77 Taft Ave. in Portland for a report of a shooting shortly after 7 p.m. Tuesday. According to witnesses, a black Lexus pulled up alongside a small sedan that was pulled over on the side of the road and a shootout occurred, with occupants of both cars firing at each other. The Lexus then sped away and turned onto Godfrey Street and then proceeded to Josslyn Street, police said. Sagamore Village, the…

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The South Portland City Council approved an order Tuesday that freed up $150,000 in state funds that will be used to help asylum-seeking migrants currently staying at one of the city’s hotels find permanent housing. Over one hundred asylum seekers have been staying at the Howard Johnson hotel in South Portland on the taxpayers’ dime since the city approved a one-year contract with the hotel on June 27, 2023. [RELATED: South Portland Approves State-Funded Agreement to Keep Housing Migrants at Howard Johnson for 12 More Months…] That contract, which turned the hotel into a temporary transitional housing facility for the…

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A bipartisan group of 50 members of Congress sent a letter to U.S. Attorney General Merrick Garland last week demanding answers from the Department of Justice on reports of illegal Chinese-owned marijuana operations across the nation. The entire Maine congressional delegation signed onto the letter, with Democratic CD2 Rep. Jared Golden leading the letter alongside Reps. Pete Sessions (R-Texas), David Valado (R-Calif.), and Sens. Angus King (I-Maine) and Joni Ernst (R-Iowa). [RELATED: Maine’s Congressional Delegation Repeats Call for Federal Crackdown on Illegal Chinese-Owned Marijuana Operations…] Maine’s delegation has been calling for federal action to be taken against the network of…

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For the second time in less than three months, the Lewiston Police Department executed a search warrant at 149 College St. in Lewiston and arrested individuals allegedly involved in illegal drug activity. [RELATED: Eight Arrested, One Oz of Fentanyl Seized After Police Raid Lewiston Drug House…] The latest raid, conducted on Monday, Feb. 5 resulted in the apprehension of five individuals. A previous search warrant executed at the same address on Dec. 12, 2023 led to the arrest of eight people and the seizure of about one ounce of fentanyl. Three out of the five people arrested Monday had a…

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A bill aimed at establishing an state advisory board to facilitate renaming place names in Maine had a public hearing Tuesday afternoon by the Maine Legislature’s State and Local Government Committee. The bill, LD 1667, comes after Maine’s taxpayer-funded Permanent Commission on the Status of Racial, Indigenous and Tribal Populations (PCRITP) held a webinar in early January on “problematic” place names in the state. [RELATED: Taxpayer-Funded “Place Justice Project” Bemoans “Problematic” Place Names in Maine…] The state racial equity commission paid the nonprofit organization Atlantic Black Box $132,804 in taxpayer funds in order to research and give a 30 minute presentation…

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Editor’s Note: Following the publication of this story, a public affairs professional from Maine Health contacted the Maine Wire asking for a correction. In their request, they contended that this article “falsely states that The Barbara Bush Children’s Hospital’s Gender Clinic refers minors for gender-affirming surgeries. The clinic neither performs these types of surgeries on minors nor does it refer minors for surgery.” When we showed this individual the section of the The Barbara Bush Children’s Hospital’s Gender Clinic website which explicitly stated that the Maine Health hospital lists “gender-affirming surgical consultations” as among the services they provide, Maine Health…

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The Portland City Council unanimously approved an order Monday accepting a $364,000 grant from the Maine State Housing Authority (MaineHousing) to extend the city’s migrant Resettlement Program for 12 months. [RELATED: Portland Budget Woe: Decline in State, Federal Funding, Staffing Shortages, Shelter for Homeless and Asylum Seekers…] According to the order memorandum, since January 2020 the city’s Resettlement Program has assisted an estimated 4,200 migrants. Services provided under the program are aimed at helping the asylum-seeking migrants “achieve self-sufficiency” by connecting them with housing resources, assisting with their applications for benefits, and providing casework assistance. Portland’s Resettlement Program in the…

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Maine Sen. Angus King (I) joined a group of Democratic U.S. Senators on a letter calling on the Biden administration to work with Israel to facilitate the distribution of humanitarian aid into Gaza. [RELATED: Maine Senators Join Bipartisan Resolution Condemning Hamas’ Use of Rape in Oct 7 Attack on Israel…] On Oct. 7, 2023 the Islamist terrorist organization Hamas launched an attack on southern Israel from the Gaza Strip, killing more than 1,200 Israelis. Since the Oct. 7 attack, Israel has engaged in an extensive bombardment and ground invasion of Gaza, with the objective of eliminating Hamas. The Hamas-controlled Gaza…

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On Jan. 25, U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) agents in Lynn, Mass. arrested an illegal alien with Mexican and Guatemalan citizenship who had been previously convicted for child rape and prostitution charges. [RELATED: Haitian Illegal Alien Charged with Raping Developmentally Disabled Person Arrested by ICE After Being Released…] ICE Enforcement and Removal Operations (ERO) Boston arrested the 42-year-old illegal alien as part of a nationwide apprehension operation from Jan. 16 through Jan. 28, that resulted in the apprehension of 171 unlawfully present noncitizens with charges or convictions for murder, homicide or assault against children. According to ICE, the 42-year-old…

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Maine’s congressional delegation renewed their call for federal action to be taken against a sprawling network of illegal Chinese-owned marijuana growing operations across the state in a Jan. 25 letter to U.S. Attorney General Merrick Garland. The delegation’s letter comes as a follow-up to an initial letter sent in August in which Maine’s members of Congress called upon the Department of Justice (DOJ) to shut down the illegal grow operations. [RELATED: Maine Congressional Delegation Urges DOJ to Shut Down Illegal Chinese-Owned Marijuana Grows…] Since June 2023, 15 raids on Chinese-controlled marijuana grow operations in Maine have resulted in the seizure…

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The City of Portland Director of Permitting and Inspections (PID) Jessica Hanscombe sent a Jan. 25 letter to City Manager Danielle West rebutting the claims of the Portland Press Herald that the city is not adequately enforcing its rent control ordinances. Portland voters approved the city’s rent control ordinance via a referendum spearheaded by the Maine Democratic Socialist of America in November 2020, which established a base rent on most of the city’s rental units, and capped the amount by which landlords can increase rent annually. [RELATED: “It’s very real and very powerful”: Outgoing Portland Mayor Kate Snyder on the…

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Note: This story was updated to include a statement from State Rep. Austin Theriault. Democratic Congressman Jared Golden (ME-02) released a statement Monday accusing House Speaker Mike Johnson (R-La.) of not wanting to secure the border and of preferring a victory for Vladimir Putin in Russia’s war against Ukraine. Rep. Golden’s accusations follow the Sunday release of a Senate border security and foreign aid package that would direct roughly $60 billion in aid to Ukraine, alongside $14.1 billion in security assistance to Israel. [RELATED: ‘Dead on Arrival:’ Senate Border and Foreign Aid Package Faces Immediate Backlash…] House Speaker Johnson said…

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The details of a border security bill tied to a foreign aid package for Ukraine and Israel were released by several Senate negotiators on Sunday, and is expected to face an uphill battle as it met with immediate backlash from Republican leaders. [RELATED: Former FBI Officials Warn Congressional Leaders of National Security Threats Posed by Southern Border ‘Invasion’…] The deal comes as the product of months-long bipartisan negotiations between Sens. James Lankford (R-Olka.), Chris Murphy (D-Conn.), and Kyrsten Sinema (I-Ariz.) to package together border security funding and immigration reform with foreign aid to Ukraine and Israel. The $118.3 billion legislative…

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Three individuals who were previously arrested and charged in November 2023 in connection to a high-end brothel network operating out of the greater Boston area and eastern Virginia were indicted Thursday by a federal grand jury in Boston. The three defendants, Han Lee, aka “Hana,” 41, of Cambridge, Mass.; James Lee, 68, of Torrance, Calif.; and Junmyung Lee, 30, of Dedham, Mass. have each been indicted on one count of conspiracy to persuade, induce, entice, and coerce one or more individuals to travel in interstate or foreign commerce to engage in prostitution; and one count of money laundering conspiracy. In…

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Eleven people were arrested Friday afternoon after a group of pro-Palestine protestors blocked both ramps at Exit 7 of I-295 in Portland, a demonstration that saw left-wing activists defend the Palestinian terror group Hamas and compare Israel to Nazi Germany. [RELATED: Maine DSA Stages Pro-Hamas Rally in Portland, Calls Terror Attacks on Israel “Morally and Legally Legitimate”…] The large mob of protestors began blocking the Franklin Street Arterial around 1:30 p.m. Friday, near the intersection of Franklin Street and Marginal Way, according to the Portland Police Department. https://twitter.com/TheMaineWire/status/1753514095460995554?s=20 Police say both the off-ramp and on-ramps to Exit 7 were blocked…

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The University of Maine Office of Diversity and Inclusion (ODI) held a ceremony Thursday commemorating the start of Black History Month by raising a “Black Lives Matter” flag outside of the university’s bookstore. “[T]he UMaine Community celebrated the start of Black History Month with the annual raising of the Black Lives Matter flag in the Memorial Union,” the taxpayer-funded university posted on Facebook. “Thank you to the UMaine Office for Diversity and Inclusion for organizing this event!” [RELATED: UMaine Law Professor Can’t Say Whether U.S. Bill of Rights Limits Federal Government or Citizens…] The flag was raised during a noon…

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South Portland Police announced Friday morning that man has been arrested in connection to the robbery of Key Bank last week. South Portland Police responded to Key Bank at 445 Gorham Rd. in South Portland for a reported robbery last Friday, Jan. 26 shortly before noon. After an initial investigation, police released photos of a person of interest in the case, which led to several tips from the public and eventually resulted in the identification of a suspect. On Thursday, Feb. 1, at around 10 p.m. the South Portland Police located the suspect inside of his parked vehicle on Mabel…

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The Portland City Council is set to consider an order Monday that would extend the 50-bed expansion of the city’s Homeless Services Center (HSC) until June 3, 2024. [RELATED: Portland Budget Woe: Decline in State, Federal Funding, Staffing Shortages, Shelter for Homeless and Asylum Seekers…] The City Council voted to expand the shelter by 50 beds via an emergency declaration in November, in response to public health and safety concerns for the large population of homeless individuals living in encampments throughout the city. In the proposed amendment extending the order, the city writes that as a result of the HSC…

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Oregon Gov. Tina Kotek (D) declared a 90-day state of emergency Tuesday in response to a “public health and public safety crisis” driven by fentanyl in Portland, the state’s largest city. [RELATED: Maine Lawmakers Consider Decriminalizing Possession of Hard Drugs and Paraphernalia…] The emergency declaration was joined by two concurrent emergency declarations from Multnomah County Chair Jessica Vega Pederson and Portland Mayor Ted Wheeler. “Our country and our state have never seen a drug this deadly and addictive, and all are grappling with how to respond,” Gov. Kotek said Tuesday. “The Chair, the Mayor and I recognize the need to…

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Democratic Congressman Jared Golden (ME-02) received donations to his 2024 campaign committee from several family members of billionaire left-wing megadonor George Soros, according to Federal Election Commission (FEC) documents published Wednesday. [RELATED: George Soros, Pierre Omidyar Fund Org That Now Controls Most Maine Newspapers…] Rep. Golden’s “Committee to Elect Jared Golden” received a net total of more than $730,000 in contributions during the year-end quarter, and closed out 2023 with over $1.4 million on hand. Among those who contributed to his campaign during the quarter were two sons of George Soros: Jonathan Soros, and Alexander Soros. According to the FEC…

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A Portland homeless man is facing multiple charges for allegedly assaulting people with a machete, possessing scheduled drugs and trafficking in prison contraband, according to a Thursday press release from the Portland Police Department. [RELATED: “Zombie Slasher” Machete and Loaded Shotgun Horrify Store Owners Across from Portland Homeless Encampment…] Portland Police say the were called to 211 Cumberland Ave. (Franklin Towers) on Wednesday, Jan. 31, shortly after 9 p.m. for a report of a fight. The fight was reported to involve a man who was “moving around the building with a machete and assaulting people.” Police located and arrested the…

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Maine law enforcement agencies have seized more than 18,000 pounds of illegally grown marijuana from properties across rural Maine owned and operated by Chinese individuals that the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) believes are part of Asian Transnational Criminal Organizations (ATCOs). In a leaked DHS memo, a federal official estimated that there are more than 270 such sites operating in Maine alone and hundreds more in other states. The proceeds of the illicit drug manufacturing and trafficking operation are used, according to the memo, to finance human trafficking, narcotics trafficking, and other criminal activities. An exclusive investigation by the Maine…

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The U.S. Attorney’s Office for Washington, D.C. announced Wednesday that four Chinese nationals have been charged for an alleged years-long conspiracy involving the illegal smuggling of U.S.-origin electronic components with military applications to the Islamic Republic of Iran. [RELATED: Chinese Nationals Caught Illegally Entering U.S. Reached Record High in December…] The federal indictment accuses Baoxia Liu, aka Emily Liu; Yiu Wa Yung, aka Stephen Yung; Yongxin Li, aka Emma Lee; and Yanlai Zhong, aka Sydney Chung, of unlawfully exporting the U.S.-made electronic components through China and Hong Kong. The D.C. prosecutors allege that the manufactured parts were smuggled to entities…

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Independent U.S. Senator from Maine Angus King announced Wednesday that he is cosponsoring legislation that would remove the green card cap for immigrants who have graduated with certain advanced science and technology degrees from U.S. educational institutions. [RELATED: Maine Senators Announce More Than 64,000 Supplemental Temporary Work Visas for Foreign Nationals…] The “Keep STEM Talent Act of 2023” would grant immigrant Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM) degree-holders who have American job offers with lawful permanent resident (LPR) status in the U.S. Granting noncitizen STEM graduates at the master’s level or higher with LPR status would exempt them from current…

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