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Entries in Maine (40)

Monday
Dec192011

Missing Maine Toddler: River Search Turns Up Nothing

iStockphoto/Thinkstock(WATERVILLE, Maine) -- The search of a river Monday morning in Waterville, Maine, failed to turn up any traces of 20-month-old Ayla Reynolds, the toddler who disappeared from her bed Friday night.

Reynolds was reported missing around 8:50 a.m. Saturday by her father, Justin DiPietro, according to police. DiPietro said he had put his daughter to sleep the night before, and found that she had disappeared that morning. Several other adults were at the home Friday night with DePietro, including one who was not a family member, police said.

Reynolds' mother, Trista Reynolds, shared custody of the girl with DiPietro and was living separately from him, according to police.

Waterville police chief Joseph Massey said Monday that the state police, game wardens and FBI are involved in the search, with more than 75 law enforcement agents now helping the investigation. Twenty-five agents helped conduct the river search, which Massey called a "logical" step because of its proximity to the place Ayla was last seen.

Massey maintained that the families of the girl have cooperated with police and that there are no suspects. Police are treating the situation as a missing persons case, he said.

Earlier Monday, Trista Reynolds revealed she had filed to receive full custody of the girl just prior to her disappearance from her father's home.

Reynolds says she filed paperwork Thursday to receive full custody of her daughter one day before the tot went missing, but says she had not told the girl's father.

"Her father had no idea. He didn't know I went to file … he'll know now, but I never told him and no one told him," she said.

Justin DiPietro lives separately from Trista Reynolds, who, according to police, has no permanent address, and the two share custody of their daughter. Trista Reynolds says she has not spoken to him since their daughter disappeared.

"I've had no contact with him; he's had no contact with me. All I know is he's the last man to see my daughter," she said. "He helped out, he would take care of her until I was on my feet, but we've been unable to get along and parent together the last few weeks."

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio

Monday
Dec192011

Police Search for Maine Toddler Last Seen at Bedtime Friday

iStockphoto/Thinkstock(WATERVILLE, Maine) -- Police in Maine turned to the public for help on Sunday after local, state and federal law enforcement officials came up empty in their search for a 20-month-old girl whose father told police he last saw her when he put her to bed at 8 p.m. Friday.

"It was imperative for us to bring together all the resources we could, as quickly as we could, to find her," Waterville Police Department Chief Joseph Massey said Sunday, adding that local fire officials have assisted in the search.

Ayla Bell Reynolds was wearing green polka-dotted pajamas with "Daddy's Princess" emblazoned across the front and a soft cast on her left arm when she was last seen, Massey said.

The broken arm, an injury Massy said she sustained about three weeks ago, also is in a sling, according to a "Find Ayla Reynolds…" Facebook page that's been set up.

Ayla is blonde, blue-eyed, 2'9" tall and weighs 30 pounds, according to a National Center for Missing & Exploited Children link on that Facebook site.

Massey said police have interviewed the girl's parents and other relatives and non-relatives who also were present Friday in the home where Ayla lives with her father, Justin DiPietro.

"They were, as far as we could see, very forthcoming with the information," the police chief said.

Massey said local and state police and FBI agents have scoured Ayla's neighborhood but found no sign of the toddler.

When she was reported missing at 8:50 a.m. Saturday, the department, following its protocols, delivered automated phone messages to every home within a mile radius of where Ayla reportedly disappeared, alerting them of the disappearance.

"We need more than just us. We need the help of the general public," Massey said. "I suspect that somebody out there may know where the little girl is....We'd like to get her back home."

Meanwhile, Ayla's mother, Trista Reynolds, revealed that she filed paperwork on Thursday to receive full custody of her daughter but said she had not told the girl's father.

"Her father had no idea.  He didn't know I went to file…he'll know now, but I never told him and no one told him," she said.

Trista Reynolds, who according to police has no permanent address, lives separately from DiPietro.  The two share custody of their daughter.  She says she has not spoken to him since their daughter disappeared.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio

Monday
Dec052011

Escaped Inmate Hunting for Two People in Maine, Police Say

iStockphoto/Thinkstock(ALFRED, Maine) -- An escaped inmate described as armed, dangerous and seeking revenge is hunting for two people in Maine, authorities said Monday.

David Glenn Hobson, 33, has eluded a dragnet since he escaped from a New Hampshire prison on Thursday.

"He's holding a grudge against two individuals," Maine State Police spokesman Stephen McCausland told ABCNews.com. "We warned them early and we believe they're in a safe place."

McCausland would not reveal any details about who the two people are or what they may have done to anger Hobson. Federal, state and county authorities are participating in the manhunt.

There have been no confirmed sightings of Hobson but he is believed to be in the vicinity of the towns of Alfred and Sanford where his relatives live.

Hobson's father Glenn Hobson was arrested Friday night for a charge of hindering apprehension. McCausland said he left clothing, a blanket and medical supplies outside his home for his son to pick up, but not a weapon. Police believe he obtained a weapon from somewhere else. Glenn Hobson has since been released after posting a $500 bail.

Hobson's mother Louann Hobson picked up the phone on Monday and confirmed that it was her before hanging up abruptly when ABC News called.

David Hobson has several relatives in Alfred, Maine, which has led authorities to believe he may be in the area. Police are warning residents in the area to be cautious and aware of their surroundings and to report any suspicious behavior.

Hobson escaped prison by scaling a 12-foot fence topped with razor wire while he was in the prison's recreational area, according to Jason Johnson, the superintendent for the Carroll County House of Corrections in Ossipee, N.H.

"We did recover a bloody shirt outside the jail and the [recovered] stolen vehicle had some blood in it as well," Johnson said.

Hobson was being held in the facility for burglary charges and his pre-trial was scheduled for later this month.

On Saturday evening, the Maine State Police recovered a Toyota Highlander SUV that Hobson had allegedly stole. It was found in a heavily wooded area of Maine. Bloody clothing found inside the car has yet to be processed, but McCausland said authorities believe the clothing to be Hobson's.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio

Monday
Oct242011

Body in Freezer Might Be Woman Who Disappeared in 1983

Comstock/Thinkstock(AUGUSTA, Maine) -- The body of a woman who disappeared in 1983 may have been found inside an unplugged freezer in the storage unit of a former boyfriend who recently died, according to police.

The children of Francis Frank Julian were cleaning out his storage unit following his death earlier this month when they came across a body inside the unplugged freezer.

They notified police, who took the freezer and the body to the medical examiner for identification and cause-of-death investigations. Police expect some results from the medical examiner's office later in the week.

Police say the woman could be Kitty I. Wardwell, of Holden, Maine, who disappeared at the age of 29 and was last seen by Julian when the couple was fighting one night in 1983.

Julian, then 52, allegedly dropped Wardwell off at a motel in New Hampshire and never saw her again, according to Maine Department of Public Safety spokesman Stephen McCausland.

Despite multiple interviews by police, Julian was never named a suspect, and no one was ever arrested or charged with her disappearance.

Wardwell's disappearance has remained a cold case for the police department, which has featured a missing persons report on its website for the woman for years. McCausland said that detectives in the department received all-new assignments Monday to begin investigating the case anew, and interviews with family members of both Julian and Wardwell were already under way.

Julian was 80 when he died in a hospital in Lewiston, Maine. He had 11 children from two different wives, both of whom died before him.

McCausland would not give further details about the circumstances under which the body was found, other than to say the freezer was a floor unit and it was not plugged in.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio

 

Thursday
May192011

Mother of Maine Mystery Boy Arrested for Murder

Jupiterimages/Thinkstock(CHELMSFORD, Mass.) -- A Texas woman has been arrested in connection with the killing and dumping of a 6-year-boy's body along a Maine rural road, according to the New Hampshire attorney general's office.

Julianne McCrery, 42, was arrested Wednesday on a Massachusetts fugitive of justice charge, according to a news release issued by the attorney general.

"The fugitive from justice charge arose from an arrest warrant issued in the State of New Hampshire on the charge of second-degree murder," the release stated.

On Wednesday, sources told ABC News that McCrery had confessed to killing and dumping her son's body.

The Irving, Texas woman told police that she accidentally gave her 6-year-old son, Camden Hughes, too much cough syrup, the sources said.

Initial autopsy results indicate asphyxiation was Camden's cause of death but final results are pending.

McCrery is expected to be arraigned Thursday morning in Concord District Court in Massachusetts.

She was taken into custody after a Massachusetts state trooper spotted her Wednesday morning at a rest area near Chelmsford, Massachussetts, police said.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio

Wednesday
May182011

Mystery Maine Boy: Woman Confesses to Killing Son, Dumping Body

Comstock/Thinkstock(CHELMSFORD, Mass.) -- A Texas woman has confessed to killing and dumping her son's body along a rural road in Maine, sources told ABC News.

The 6-year-old boy, Camden Pierce Hughes, was dumped by Julianne McCrery. McCrery told police that she accidentally gave her son too much cough syrup, the sources said.

The woman who is being questioned in connection with the case has been taken to a local hospital for a medical evaluation and has not been charged with a crime, said David Procopio, director of communications for Massachusetts State Police.

"She remains in the care and custody of Massachusetts State Police. ... I'm not confirming any ages and names," Procopio said at a press conference Wednesday afternoon. Procopio declined to identify the woman or the boy and referred reporters to the New Hampshire State Attorney's office. He also declined to say why New Hampshire authorities were in charge of the investigation.

Juliane McCrery was found in a blue Toyota Tacoma truck at a rest stop off 495 in Chelmsford, Mass., on Wednesday. A female Massachusetts state trooper approached McCrery and asked if she needed assistance. The woman, who is in her 40s, responded: "I killed my son. I want to kill myself." She was taken into custody at the Concord State Police barracks.

State Police officials confirmed that they are questioning the woman in connection with the discovery of the boy's body, which was found fully-clothed under a green fleece blanket on Dennettt Road in South Berwick, Maine on Saturday.

Investigators have been hunting for a woman driving a blue pickup truck since Saturday when the boy's body was found on Dennett Road in South Berwick, Maine.

The mystery of who dumped the boy has puzzled investigators. Nobody filed a missing persons report for the boy. A scan of missing persons databases turned up no leads.

A passerby who lives in the neighborhood discovered the boy's body. Police won't say if the body, between the ages of 4 and 8, showed signs of trauma.

The State Police Computer Crimes Unit produced a computer-generated photo of the unidentified boy. The boy was 3 feet 8 inches tall and weighed 45 pounds. He had dirty blond hair and blue eyes. His baby teeth had yet to fall out.

The death has been deemed suspicious, and investigators have not ruled out homicide.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio

Tuesday
May172011

Mystery Maine Boy May Have Been Dumped by Military Member

Comstock/Thinkstock(SOUTH BERWICK, Maine) -- Police believe the person who dumped a little boy's body on a rural Maine road may have connections to the military, and they've enlisted the help of the Naval Criminal Investigative Service to help identify the boy.

The eyewitness who spotted a woman driving a blue Toyota Tacoma pickup truck on Dennett Road the day the boy's body was found spotted a Navy insignia embossed in or around the truck's license plate.

"We're really starting to wonder if the individual involved with this truck is a member of the military," said Maine State Police Lt. Brian McDonough. "We're starting to think that way because we just got no information from any neighbors, any family members....Maybe these people are...assigned a temporary duty in the military and aren't that well known or embedded into the community and again would have family outside of the state or outside of the region."

Police are alerting Navy Reserve centers and have also brought Interpol into the investigation as they continue to search for the owner of the blue truck.

Other facts that might hint at a military connection include the boy's clothing. Found fully clothed, the boy had on a gray-colored, camouflage-hooded sweatshirt and a navy blue T-shirt with "Aviator Series" displayed on the front, police said.

"There's really no explanation for this...how nobody can report this child is missing. To me, it's unthinkable," McDonough said.

The boy, who's between the ages of four and five, was found in South Berwick, Maine, at around 5 p.m. A passerby who lives in the neighborhood saw the body with a green fleece blanket over it, police said. Police won't say if the body showed signs of trauma.

The State Police Computer Crimes Unit produced a computer-generated photo of the unidentified boy. The boy was three feet, eight inches tall and weighed 45 pounds. He had dirty blond hair and blue eyes. His baby teeth had yet to fall out.

The death has been deemed suspicious, and investigators have not ruled out that this could be a homicide case.

Anyone with information about the boy's identity or the Toyota Tacoma pickup truck spotted in the area should call Maine State Police at 207-657-3030.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio

Monday
May162011

Mystery Maine Boy Found Dead on Rural Road Puzzles Investigators

Jupiterimages/Thinkstock(SOUTH BERWICK, Maine) -- Despite receiving at least 100 tips, police said they're no closer to identifying the dead boy found under a blanket on a rural road in Maine.

"Somebody has got to miss this child. He's a nephew of somebody, a son or grandson of somebody....It's just been very, very frustrating that we haven't gotten any leads, significant leads, in identifying this child," said Maine State Police Lt. Brian McDonough.

On Saturday, the body of a boy between the ages of four and five was found on Dennett Road in South Berwick, Maine, at around 5 p.m. A passerby who lives in the neighborhood saw the body with a blanket over it, police said. Police won't reveal how decomposed the body was or if the body showed signs of trauma.

What makes the discovery of the body even more of a mystery is no boy has been reported missing in Maine, New Hampshire or Massachusetts who fits the boy's description, authorities said.

Before the body was found, residents spotted a woman driving a blue pickup truck in the area Saturday morning.

The truck has an extended cab and a full cap over the bed. Police have not been able to track where the truck is licensed. Over the weekend, police took castings of tire impressions and foot impressions on the road.

On Monday, police looked at surveillance video, hoping they might catch a glimpse of the child.

McDonough said he believes the person who dumped the body had to be familiar with the rural, semi-paved road because it is in a remote area.

South Berwick is near the New Hampshire border, and New Hampshire authorities have been helping in the investigation. Members of Team Adam from the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children are also involved. Team Adam includes former law enforcement officials and those familiar with missing children cases.

The State Police Computer Crimes Unit produced a computer-generated photo of the unidentified boy. The boy was three feet, eight inches tall and weighed 45 pounds. He had dirty blond hair and blue eyes. His baby teeth had yet to fall out.

The fully clothed boy was wearing a gray colored camouflage hooded sweatshirt, khaki pants, a navy blue T-shirt with "Aviator Series" displayed on the front and "Lightning McQueen" black sneakers, police said.

Police thought that they had a near-break in the case earlier Monday when a law enforcement tip led them to search for a boy of a similar build and description as the unidentified boy. A check revealed that the boy was safely at home.

Anyone with information about the boy's identity or the Toyota Tacoma pickup truck spotted in the area should call Maine State Police at 207-657-3030.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio

Wednesday
Dec292010

Sugarloaf Ski Accident Investigation: Winds to Blame?

Photo Courtesy - Liz Hinckley/ Facebook(CARRABASSETT VALLEY, Maine) -- Investigators will take a close look Wednesday at a Maine ski lift that broke Tuesday morning, sending five chairs of people plummeting more than 20 feet to the snow-packed ground below.

At least six people were injured when a line on the chairlift at the Sugarloaf ski area suddenly snapped. The resort said none of the injuries were life-threatening.

Longtime skier Rebecca London said everything seemed normal as she rode the chairlift until it stopped for a second time.  Then, without warning, she suddenly realized she was falling.

"It [the lift] kind of jerked backwards and then all the sudden I could feel myself falling and see the chair in front of me falling as well," London, 20, told ABC News Wednesday.  "It was happening so fast I really didn't have time. ... I didn't even realize what had happened until I was on the ground."

Investigators are reportedly looking at wind as a possible cause of the accident on the Spillway lift, given that there were 40-mph gusts at the time.  The lift had been closed earlier in the day because of the high winds but reopened half an hour before the accident.

Witnesses also said a worker appeared to be in the middle of repairing part of the lift tower at the time of the accident, which a spokesman for Sugarloaf could not confirm.

Copyright 2010 ABC News Radio

Tuesday
Dec282010

Ski Lift Derails at Maine Resort; Skiers Trapped, Injured

Photo Courtesy - Liz Hinckley/Facebook(CARRABASSETT VALLEY, Maine) -- A ski lift in Maine, crowded with holiday skiers, derailed Tuesday and sent more than a half-dozen skiers plunging 50 feet to the ground. A rescue effort was immediately launched to reach the skiers who fell, as well as dozens of other skiers trapped on the lift at Sugarloaf Mountain ski area in Carrabassett Valley.

The resort reported on its Facebook page that the accident occurred on the Spillway East chairlift, and that eight people were believed injured. The resort called the injuries "minor."

Franklin County Emergency Management told ABC affiliate WMTW that officials received word of a "condition yellow" which means people were injured, not critically.

A spokeswoman for Franklin Memorial Hospital in Farmington said two of the injured people were being taken there by ambulance.

Conditions at the time of the accident were blustery. The National Weather Service reported winds in the area gusting from 29 to 43 miles per hour. The temperature was 12 degrees at the time, resulting in a windchill of minus-nine.

Copyright 2010 ABC News Radio

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