Courts and Crime

MEXICO, Maine — A man who stole a pickup truck in Paris and led police on a chase that ended at a convenience store in Mexico has died after an exchange of gunfire with police.

A Maine State Police spokesman says the suspect was found dead in the vehicle outside the Circle K store and gas station just before 11 p.m. Sunday.

The man exchanged gunfire with a state trooper and a Mexico officer, but it was not immediately clear if the man was shot by police or if he shot himself. No officers were hurt.

The man's name was not immediately made public.

BELFAST, Maine — A 44-year-old Maine man who pleaded guilty to killing a woman and seriously wounding her son in a late-night attack at the woman's Belfast home is due to be sentenced this week.

Under a plea deal, prosecutors are recommending a 50-year sentence for Todd Gilday of Belfast. He originally intended to use an insanity defense but pleaded guilty last month to murder, attempted murder and elevated aggravated assault.

The sentence hearing is set for Wednesday.

SKOWHEGAN, Maine — A high school music teacher charged with threatening to kill his girlfriend and choking her until she passed out has been freed on $10,000 bail.

Andrew Maderios of Pittsfield made his initial court appearance this week to face eight charges, including three felony counts of aggravated assault. He did not enter a plea.

Prosecutors say given the seriousness of the case, they asked for $25,000 bail.

The 28-year-old Maderios has been placed on leave from his job at Nokomis Regional High School in Newport pending the outcome.

FAIRFIELD, Maine — Authorities have been unable to find a Maine woman and her 12-year-old daughter who are being sued in connection with the 2012 death of a 3-month-old baby.

The woman's daughter pleaded guilty to misdemeanor charges in connection with the death of 3-month-old Brooklyn Foss-Greenaway. The mother was babysitting Brooklyn at the time.

Brooklyn's mother, Nicole Greenaway, filed a negligence lawsuit against the woman, who was never charged.

PORTLAND, Maine — A husband and wife from Kennebunk who told authorities they did not live together so the wife could continue to collect welfare benefits have pleaded guilty to welfare fraud charges.

Carol Welch pleaded guilty Thursday in in U.S. District Court in Portland guilty to Social Security fraud and theft of federal funds. Her husband, Scott Welch, pleaded guilty to making a false statement.

STANDISH, Maine — A former local official in a Maine town and two of his nephews are facing charges for digging up the cremated remains of two relatives in Standish.

Authorities say 71-year-old Limington resident and former selectman Calvin Lewis, 37-year-old Hiram resident Travis Lewis, and 42-year-old Kevin Lewis of Fort Lauderdale, Florida, are scheduled to appear in Bridgton District Court on Nov. 18 on charges of abuse of a corpse.

LEWISTON, Maine - Leading players in the criminal justice system offered very different views Thursday on whether minorities in Maine face tougher sentences than whites for the crimes they commit. Prosecutors, defense attorneys, state lawmakers and current inmates shared their thoughts on sentencing disparities at a U.S. Commission on Civil Rights hearing in Lewiston.

Three men have been charged with digging up the remains of two relatives and moving them to another cemetery. Those arrested include Calvin Lewis of Limington, a former selectmen there, and his nephews Travis and Kevin.

The widow of one of the buried men says she was told of the move by one of the men and called the sheriff's office. The three have been ordered to appear in court November 18 to answer charges of abuse of a corpse.

AUGUSTA, Maine — A New York City man who orchestrated drug trafficking in Maine from behind bars even after he was arrested has been sentenced to spend six years in prison.

Mark Anthony Hilliard was sentenced Wednesday in Kennebec County Superior Court after pleading guilty to aggravated trafficking in scheduled drugs and trafficking in scheduled drugs. The 32-year-old Hilliard, of the Bronx, was also sentenced to four years of probation.

AUGUSTA, Maine — A 66-year-old Mount Vernon man has pleaded guilty to having unlawful sexual contact with a child.

Prosecutors say James Beane was sentenced Wednesday in Kennebec County Superior Court to serve two years of a 10-year prison term and 12 years of probation.

District Attorney Maeghan Maloney tells the Kennebec Journal the case was handled swiftly because Beane did not want to make the girl testify.

Court records show the victim was 4 when the offense occurred in April. Maloney described it as inappropriate touching.

AUGUSTA, Maine — The Maine Human Rights Commission has sided with a man who says he was a victim of discrimination and unfairly discharged from an assisted living residence in Richmond.

The commission voted 4-0 to find reasonable grounds to believe James Nichols was denied a reasonable accommodation by Richmond Eldercare Coalition Inc. However, the panel voted to dismiss Nichols' charges that two facility officials discriminated against him on the basis of disability.

LEWISTON, Maine — Lewiston has decided to accept deals offered by two federal agencies to pay penalties for fraudulent loans made to a developer.

City councilors voted 7-0 Tuesday to accept the settlement offers.

According to the agreement, the city will pay $140,000 in reimbursements to the Housing and Urban Development Department and $40,000 to the Department of Justice.

The $200,000 in HUD loans to developer Travis Soule in 2007 and 2008 were meant to be used to renovate three apartment buildings.

AUGUSTA, Maine — A Maine man charged with injuring his girlfriend's twin 2-year-old daughters remains jailed on $50,000 bail after pleading not guilty.

David Devine of Oakland pleaded not guilty Tuesday to two counts of aggravated assault in connection with the May attack that landed both girls in the hospital, one with a broken leg and the other with a broken arm, among other injuries.

PARIS, Maine (AP) _ A judge has upheld the vehicular manslaughter conviction of a Maine woman accused of being drunk and reading a text message at the time of a double-fatal car crash.

Jurors acquitted 21-year-old Kristina Lowe of West Paris of drunken driving in May but returned guilty verdicts for manslaughter and leaving the scene of an accident.

The Sun Journal said a judge on Tuesday dismissed motions for a new trial, mistrial or acquittal.

PORTLAND, Maine — A former teacher at a private school in Freeport who is charged with allowing his property in Lewiston to be used for drug sales has been released on bail.

Noel Thibodeau was released Monday on $10,000 bail and on condition that he live with a family member and get substance abuse and mental health counseling.

The 43-year-old Thibodeau was arrested Aug. 5 and charged in federal court with maintaining drug-involved premises.

Court documents say investigators found Thibodeau had been allowing drug dealers to work out of his home since early 2013.

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