Archive for June, 2013

PTSD added to list of qualifying conditions for medical marijuana treatment

June 30th, 2013

AUGUSTA, Maine — A bill adding post-traumatic stress disorder as a qualifying condition for the prescription of medical marijuana quietly became law on Wednesday without Gov. Paul LePage’s signature.

The bill, sponsored by Rep. Elizabeth Dickerson, D-Rockland, amends the Maine Medical Use of Marijuana Act to add post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), inflammatory bowel disease and other illnesses to the list of conditions for which a physician may prescribe medical marijuana.

The new law takes effect late September.

Dickerson said Friday that she sponsored the bill at the request of a number of veterans, one of whom told her he would rather use medical marijuana than something like Prozac.

Paul McCarrier, legislative liaison for Medical Marijuana Caregivers of Maine, said the change will help veterans and patients in Maine access “their medicine of choice” and will help physicians and others gather data about how medical marijuana can help veterans with PTSD.

The original bill received “quite a bit of pushback” from the Maine Medical Association, McCarrier said, because it contained language that would have added treatment of opioid or other pharmaceutical dependence, as well as “any other medical condition or its treatment as determined by a physician.”

Gordon Smith of the Maine Medical Association said that language was just one aspect of the bill that made many MMA member physicians uncomfortable.

“We had quite a fight with a few legislators who were very bothered by [our opposition] and asked, ‘Don’t we trust the doctors?’” Smith said. “I said, ‘No, not all 4,000 of them, no.

Article source: http://bangordailynews.com/2013/06/30/news/state/ptsd-added-to-list-of-qualifying-conditions-for-medical-marijuana-treatment/

Auburn man charged in 2×4 assault over medical marijuana

June 28th, 2013

AUBURN, Maine — A Hogan Road man was arrested Wednesday night, charged with beating another man with a two-by-four in a dispute over medical marijuana.

Derek Daniel Fox, 41, of 156 Hogan Road, was charged with elevated aggravated assault in the attack that sent the victim to a Lewiston hospital.

Police said that early Wednesday night, Fox was at the Vine Street home of his former partner, with whom he had been growing marijuana plants. Both men, police said, are medical marijuana caregivers.

At about 8 p.m., the victim decided he wanted to smoke some of the pot and took a bud from Fox’s plant, police said. Fox took exception, produced a board and struck the victim with it at least once.

Police were called to the home, where they arrested Fox and took him to the Androscoggin County Jail. The victim, who was not identified, was treated at a Lewiston hospital and later released, police said.

Fox, who has a criminal history of disorderly conduct and sale or use of drug paraphernalia, is expected to make an initial court appearance on Friday.

Article source: http://bangordailynews.com/2013/06/28/news/lewiston-auburn/auburn-man-charged-in-2x4-assault-over-medical-marijuana/?ref=polbeat

Bangor asking residents for ideas on future of Pickering Square bus hub

June 28th, 2013

BANGOR, Maine — Bangor officials want to know residents’ thoughts on the future of the city’s public transportation system as it relates to sometimes-troubled Pickering Square.

The city will host a public workshop about the Community Connector bus service and ways of improving the area around its Pickering Square hub at 2 p.m. Thursday in Council Chambers at Bangor City Hall, 73 Harlow St.

According to a notice of the event, the city would like to know:

• What’s good about the current arrangement?

• Can Pickering Square and the Community Connector be improved together where they are?

• Should the bus service be moved to a different location?

• What spots might be better?

• What do residents and businesses expect to see for Pickering Square, the parking garage and public transportation?

City officials have been weighing their options for the area on and off for more than a year after downtown residents raised concerns about panhandling, foul language, loitering, littering and brawls in Pickering Square near the Community Connector’s downtown bus hub.

A year ago, a City Council panel decided to pursue other options for addressing concerns in Pickering Square because moving the bus hub likely would have required a $25,000-plus study. Some of those actions, such as Bangor Police Department’s revival of a downtown Bangor walking beat and a citywide ban on synthetic marijuana, have noticeably improved the situation in Pickering Square, according to some downtown business owners and

Article source: http://bangordailynews.com/2013/06/24/news/bangor/bangor-asking-residents-for-ideas-on-future-of-pickering-square-bus-hub/?ref=latest

Fatal accident shuts down Route 3 in Augusta

June 27th, 2013

June 18

2 drivers killed Monday in Augusta Route 3 head-on crash

A head-on crash claims Laura Hall, 46, and Dean A. James, 45; James, who caused the crash by crossing the center line, was a convicted drug dealer.

By CRAIG CROSBY Kennebec Journal

AUGUSTA — Two people were killed Monday in a head-on car crash on Route 3 that closed the busy road for several hours, and police are investigating whether an earlier report of an erratic driver is related to the deadly incident.

Augusta police reconstruct a car accident that claimed the life of two people Monday on Route 3 in Augusta.

Andy Molloy / Kennebec Journal

Laura Hall, 46, of Liberty, died at the crash scene, said Deputy Chief Jared Mills of the Augusta Police Department. Dean A. James, 45, of South China, was taken to MaineGeneral Medical Center in Augusta, but he died there shortly thereafter. A third driver, Duane Alexander, 56, of Palermo, was not injured.

All three drivers were alone in their vehicles, Mills said.

The crash occurred around 7:15 a.m. Monday just east of Fairview Estates mobile home park as James drove his 2012 Nissan Altima east on Route 3. James’ Altima apparently crossed into the oncoming lane, Mills said, and hit the back of a 2013 Jeep Liberty registered to Togus police and driven by Alexander.

Mills did not know whether Alexander is a Togus police officer or works elsewhere

Article source: http://www.onlinesentinel.com/news/Fatal-accident-shuts-down-Route-3-near-Augusta.html

Maine Adopts Law Allowing Medical Marijuana for PTSD

June 26th, 2013

Study: Cannabinoids Could Potentially Cut Down On NSAID-Induced Hospitalizations

MORGANTOWN, WV — Non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAID), such as ibuprofen, are among the most widely used analgesic substances in the world. However, the consumption of…

Article source: http://www.thedailychronic.net/2013/24174/maine-adopts-law-allowing-medical-marijuana-for-ptsd/

A growing addiction: Heroin overdoses on the rise in Maine

June 23rd, 2013

One man was found in bed, dead at 39, in the early hours of the morning. Three sleeping children didn’t know about daddy’s drug habit.

Another was 32 and found dead, at home, in the bathroom last month.

A third was 62, also found dead in bed by family.

Lewiston and Auburn police are investigating the three possible fatal heroin overdoses between March and May, waiting for toxicology results and possible charges. Police say the deaths are too spread out to have been one bad batch.

But then, it’s heroin. It’s all bad.

And it’s on the rise in Maine, again.

Heroin killed three times as many people in 2012 than it did in 2011 in Maine, according to numbers from the Office of Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services.

Maine Drug Enforcement agents around the state made 99 heroin busts in the first five months of 2013 after counting 127 for all of last year.

Numbers also show more heroin addicts checking into treatment here. One-quarter report they’ve shared needles. The state epidemiologist worries about users spreading hepatitis and HIV and catching infections that can go straight for the heart. Law enforcement officers worry about patting down suspects and getting pricked.

“We’re seeing a lot of heroin,” said Dr. Michael E. Kelley, chief of psychiatry at St. Mary’s Regional Medical Center in Lewiston, which has inpatients and outpatients in its chemical dependency detox program.

At the root is economics, with deadly implications.

About 15 years ago, Kelley said, doctors received a subtle message regarding pain meds: Start

Article source: http://bangordailynews.com/2013/06/23/news/state/a-growing-addiction-heroin-overdoses-on-the-rise-in-maine/

A growing addiction: Heroin overdoses on the rise in Maine

June 23rd, 2013

One man was found in bed, dead at 39, in the early hours of the morning. Three sleeping children didn’t know about daddy’s drug habit.

Another was 32 and found dead, at home, in the bathroom last month.

A third was 62, also found dead in bed by family.

Lewiston and Auburn police are investigating the three possible fatal heroin overdoses between March and May, waiting for toxicology results and possible charges. Police say the deaths are too spread out to have been one bad batch.

But then, it’s heroin. It’s all bad.

And it’s on the rise in Maine, again.

Heroin killed three times as many people in 2012 than it did in 2011 in Maine, according to numbers from the Office of Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services.

Maine Drug Enforcement agents around the state made 99 heroin busts in the first five months of 2013 after counting 127 for all of last year.

Numbers also show more heroin addicts checking into treatment here. One-quarter report they’ve shared needles. The state epidemiologist worries about users spreading hepatitis and HIV and catching infections that can go straight for the heart. Law enforcement officers worry about patting down suspects and getting pricked.

“We’re seeing a lot of heroin,” said Dr. Michael E. Kelley, chief of psychiatry at St. Mary’s Regional Medical Center in Lewiston, which has inpatients and outpatients in its chemical dependency detox program.

At the root is economics, with deadly implications.

About 15 years ago, Kelley said, doctors received a subtle message regarding pain meds: Start

Article source: http://bangordailynews.com/2013/06/23/news/state/a-growing-addiction-heroin-overdoses-on-the-rise-in-maine/

A growing addiction: Heroin overdoses on the rise in Maine

June 23rd, 2013

One man was found in bed, dead at 39, in the early hours of the morning. Three sleeping children didn’t know about daddy’s drug habit.

Another was 32 and found dead, at home, in the bathroom last month.

A third was 62, also found dead in bed by family.

Lewiston and Auburn police are investigating the three possible fatal heroin overdoses between March and May, waiting for toxicology results and possible charges. Police say the deaths are too spread out to have been one bad batch.

But then, it’s heroin. It’s all bad.

And it’s on the rise in Maine, again.

Heroin killed three times as many people in 2012 than it did in 2011 in Maine, according to numbers from the Office of Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services.

Maine Drug Enforcement agents around the state made 99 heroin busts in the first five months of 2013 after counting 127 for all of last year.

Numbers also show more heroin addicts checking into treatment here. One-quarter report they’ve shared needles. The state epidemiologist worries about users spreading hepatitis and HIV and catching infections that can go straight for the heart. Law enforcement officers worry about patting down suspects and getting pricked.

“We’re seeing a lot of heroin,” said Dr. Michael E. Kelley, chief of psychiatry at St. Mary’s Regional Medical Center in Lewiston, which has inpatients and outpatients in its chemical dependency detox program.

At the root is economics, with deadly implications.

About 15 years ago, Kelley said, doctors received a subtle message regarding pain meds: Start

Article source: http://bangordailynews.com/2013/06/23/news/state/a-growing-addiction-heroin-overdoses-on-the-rise-in-maine/

Maine’s growing heroin habit: Busts, overdoses on the rise

June 23rd, 2013

One man was found in bed, dead at 39, in the early hours of the morning. Three sleeping children didn’t know about daddy’s drug habit.

Another was 32 and found dead, at home, in the bathroom last month.

A third was 62, also found dead in bed by family.

Lewiston and Auburn police are investigating the three possible fatal heroin overdoses between March and May, waiting for toxicology results and possible charges. Police say the deaths are too spread out to have been one bad batch.

But then, it’s heroin. It’s all bad.

And it’s on the rise in Maine, again.

Heroin killed three times as many people in 2012 than it did in 2011 in Maine, according to numbers from the Office of Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services.

Maine Drug Enforcement agents around the state made 99 heroin busts in the first five months of 2013 after counting 127 for all of last year.

Numbers also show more heroin addicts checking into treatment here. One-quarter report they’ve shared needles. The state epidemiologist worries about users spreading hepatitis and HIV and catching infections that can go straight for the heart. Law enforcement officers worry about patting down suspects and getting pricked.

“We’re seeing a lot of heroin,” said Dr. Michael E. Kelley, chief of psychiatry at St. Mary’s

Article source: http://www.sunjournal.com/news/lewiston-auburn-oxford-hills-river-valley-franklin/2013/06/23/maines-growing-heroin-habit-busts

Heroin busts, overdoses on the rise

June 22nd, 2013

One man was found in bed, dead at 39, in the early hours of the morning. Three sleeping children didn’t know about daddy’s drug habit.

Another was 32 and found dead, at home, in the bathroom last month.

A third was 62, also found dead in bed by family.

Lewiston and Auburn police are investigating the three possible fatal heroin overdoses between March and May, waiting for toxicology results and possible charges. Police say the deaths are too spread out to have been one bad batch.

But then, it’s heroin. It’s all bad.

And it’s on the rise in Maine, again.

Heroin killed three times as many people in 2012 than it did in 2011 in Maine, according to numbers from the Office of Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services.

Maine Drug Enforcement agents around the state made 99 heroin busts in the first five months of 2013 after counting 127 for all of last year.

Numbers also show more heroin addicts checking into treatment here. One-quarter report they’ve shared needles. The state epidemiologist worries about users spreading hepatitis and HIV and catching infections that can go straight for the heart. Law enforcement officers worry about patting down suspects and getting pricked.

“We’re seeing a lot of heroin,” said Dr. Michael E. Kelley, chief of psychiatry at St. Mary’s

Article source: http://www.sunjournal.com/news/lewiston-auburn-oxford-hills-river-valley-franklin/2013/06/22/maines-growing-heroin-habit-busts