New England in brief

Mass. man faces drunken driving charge

September 14, 2008
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A Massachusetts man faces drunken driving charges after ramming a courthouse curb while taking a friend to a drunken driving hearing in Candia, N.H. A state trooper who arrested the friend two months ago was outside the courthouse Wednesday morning when 50-year-old Edward Cooper of Rockland, Mass., drove in. He said the driver ran into the curb, then was charged with drunken driving. Cooper was driving a friend to court for a hearing on a drunken driving arrest in July. Cooper has his own hearing next month. (AP)

Four campers hurt as cooking fuel ignites
Four young campers were hurt, and two of them hospitalized, when a makeshift cooking fuel can they were refilling with alcohol exploded yesterday in Barnstead, N.H., spraying them with burning fuel. Deputy Fire Chief Shawn Mulcahy said the girls at Camp Fatima were pouring alcohol into a small can they were using as a heat source for a stove and didn't notice a flame still was burning in the can. The flame followed the stream of fuel back into a one-gallon metal can and exploded. Mulcahy said two campers suffered very minor injuries, but two others were more seriously hurt - one burned on the arm and one burned on the face, neck and leg. (AP)

Hundreds mourn slain immigrant
Hundreds of mourners marched in a procession through the streets and attended a funeral Mass yesterday for a 27-year-old Sudanese immigrant who was fatally shot last weekend while working as a hospital security guard. People marched arm-in-arm behind a hearse carrying the body of James Angelo from a funeral home to the Cathedral of the Immaculate Conception, where they filled the church to near capacity. Along the way, they cried and sang and carried a portrait of Angelo, whose killing remains a mystery. Angelo, a former youth soccer coach who hoped to one day become a police officer, was gunned down at about 4 a.m. last Sunday while working at Mercy Hospital. Police don't have a motive in the shooting, but say they are working on some strong leads. (AP)

Backpack ban remains in effect at school
A backpack ban will remain in place at Marshwood High School even after dozens of students staged a sit-in to protest the school's policy. At least 50 students at the South Berwick school staged a protest Friday over a school policy that prohibits the use of backpacks during school hours. Eleventh-grader Richard Cooney said students believe they're not making progress in persuading the principal to change the policy. Superintendent Jeffrey Bearden said the policy was put into place as a safety measure several years ago after the 1999 Columbine High School killings. (AP)

Hunter gets 1-year term in fatal shooting
A Massachusetts bear hunter who killed a man picking berries in 2005 will serve one year in prison after pleading guilty to charges of involuntary manslaughter. Brian Gilbert, 29, of Charlemont, Mass., entered his plea Friday in the death of Douglas Bartlett, 50, of Whitingham, on Sept. 3, 2005. Gilbert originally was charged with second-degree murder and was scheduled to go on trial Monday before a plea deal was reached. Gilbert acknowledged shooting Bartlett while bear hunting in a remote area of Whitingham but maintains that he saw a bear. On Friday, Bartlett's family said Gilbert left Bartlett alone in the woods to die, even though Gilbert says he and his brother called 911, and has left them with a life sentence without their loved one. (AP)

Officials mull how to resolve election tie
Cumberland town officials are trying to figure out what to do after the primary election for an at-large town council seat ended in a tie. Democrat James McLaughlin asked for a recount after finishing three votes behind incumbent Bruce Lemois. The recount at the state Board of Election offices in Providence on Friday found each man finished with 2,855 votes. State officials say the town must settle the matter, but town officials say they don't know what form a settlement might take. Lawyer Brandon Bell, who is representing McLaughlin, says there is nothing in the town charter that addresses election ties. The Board of Canvassers plans a meeting tomorrow to discuss how to resolve the tie. (AP)

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