AAA offers free pre-winter car checks



AAA of Northern New England offered free pre-winter car inspections to drivers in Maine on Saturday in South Portland to keep drivers safe on the roads when the snow hits.

The checks are free for members and non-members alike.

Technicians checked all fluid levels, inspected filters, hoses, belts, and tires.

AAA Maine Fleet Supervisor Erik Lowell said the technicians see a lot of tires that are worn down or not properly inflated, which can make driving in the snow difficult and even dangerous.

Technicians also checked battery levels, and met with drivers to show them what areas of their cars needed service.

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Rain floods Maine Mall parking lot

SOUTH PORTLAND, Maine (NEWS CENTER) -- Just like many parts of southern Maine, the parking lot of the Maine Mall was flooded Wednesday afternoon.

Shoppers returned from the stores to find their cars surrounded by shin-deep water. Others never even made it into the mall; their cars got stuck while they were driving through the parking lot.

"'Come to Maine,' they said. 'Enjoy the weather,' and here we are," Kevin O'Brien, who was on vacation from Florida, said.

He had to shed his shoes and socks and trudge through the water to reach his rental car.

"Couldn't get my wife to get the car, so I had to get it," he joked.

Laurie Romprey got stuck on a curb in the lot.

South Portland officials investigating hazing incident


SOUTH PORTLAND, Maine  (NEWS CENTER) -- South Portland school officials said they began an investigation into hazing on the high school football team after the high school football coach told them about it.

Thursday, the football team was taken into a lecture room while each player was interviewed individually by the athletic director and assistant principals about the incident - which officials said involves drugs.

South Portland superintendent Ken Kunin would not tell NEWS CENTER what the drug was - but confirmed the pills taken were not performance-enhancing. He did say the pills are illegal to possess without a prescription.

He said the incident involved older players on the team forcing younger players to take those pills.

South Portland approves plastic bag fee

SOUTH PORTLAND, Maine (NEWS CENTER) -- Residents in South Portland will soon have to pay for plastic bags at grocery stores.

The Portland Press Herald reports South Portland's city council approved a measure imposing a five-cent fee on paper or plastic one-time use shopping bags.

This specific measure also bans polystyrene food packaging and mirrors the one passed in Portland this April.
City leaders said they wanted both cities to be on the same page with one another. The changes are tentatively set to go into effect March 1. 


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MDEA: South Portland man arrested on drug trafficking charges

SOUTH PORTLAND, Maine (NEWS CENTER) -- According to MDEA agents, a South Portland man has been arrested on drug trafficking charges. 

For the past month, agents from the MDEA Cumberland District Task Force, along with officers of the Portland and South Portland Police Departments conducted an investigation into the illegal distribution of drugs in the greater Portland area by 30-year-old Brandon York.

According to officials, agents from the Cumberland District Task Force arrested York on August 21 at his home in South Portland on an arrest warrant. 

During a search of York's home, agents found cocaine, MDA, packaging material and $5,000.00 in suspected drug proceeds. 

Police fliers ask drug dealers to report competition

SOUTH PORTLAND, Maine (NEWS CENTER) -- Some local police departments are sharing a flier on social media that asks drug dealers to turn in their competitors.

South Portland and Winslow Police Departments each posted the flier. Their pitch is that if if you want to get rid of the competition, the police are willing to help. Both South Portland and Winslow Police admit it was a funny post they put up and never expected to get the response they did.

"It was a tongue and cheek sort of response that we were making and we did expect some reaction, some appreciation for using humor to discuss what is really a serious topic for our community drug abuse and drug trafficking," said Lt. Frank Clark with South Portland.

Both posts received hundreds of comments, shares and likes, which is a surprise for both departments.

Men charged in South Portland shooting, stabbing case appear in court


SOUTH PORTLAND, Maine (NEWS CENTER) Three men indicted on charges of attempted murder, elevated aggravated assault and robbery stemming from a shooting and stabbing over a small drug transaction in South Portland were back in court Tuesday morning. Two of the men were there to enter pleas of not guilty, and the third to argue bail.

 Zachary Swain, 19, of Cape Elizabeth, Noah Sibole-Little, 19, of Portland and Essa Sayed, 18, of Portland were all arrested after an altercation back on March 11 at the city's recreation complex off Highland Avenue. 

Police said at the time that Sayed and Swain shot and stabbed two people during what police called a drug deal involving "a relatively small quantity of marijuana."