New England briefs

Snow, ice, cause commuters headaches, close schools

A combination of snow and ice caused a tough commute for drivers across much of Vermont, New Hampshire and Maine on the first day back at work after the holiday weekend, and schools were closed or delayed openings.

A winter weather advisory was in effect through midday Tuesday. Snow that fell overnight was expected to turn to sleet and freezing rain. By Tuesday morning, some parts of the region reported up to 4 inches of snow, and road conditions were hazardous.

But gone were the subzero temperatures and dangerous wind chills of the previous few days. Temperatures were in the 20s and expected to rise to near 50 in some areas, turning the wintry mix into rain.

In a winter that's been mild overall, several days of very low temperatures finally helped freeze Lake Winnipesaukee, New Hampshire's largest lake.

Dave Emerson of Emerson Aviation, a pilot who flies over the lake, called "ice-in" on Monday, saying there was no open water.

He said two weeks ago, the lake was more than 50 percent open, which is unusual for February, but not unprecedented. But he said some of the ice is still very thin.

Police: Massachusetts skier killed in Vermont crash

State police say a Massachusetts man is dead following a ski accident in northeastern Vermont.

Police say Varter Shirinian lost control and hit a tree Monday afternoon at Burke Mountain Ski Area in East Burke, Vermont, about 40 miles northeast of Montpelier.

Police say the 58-year-old Watertown, Massachusetts, man had been skiing with a family member on the Big Dipper trail and wasn't wearing a helmet. Shirinian was pronounced dead at the scene.

Police initially transposed his name. They corrected it Tuesday morning.

Foul play is not suspected. An autopsy has been ordered and police are investigating.

Woman fatally shot, caller reports dispute with girlfriend

Police responding to a caller saying he was in a dispute with his girlfriend in Shrewsbury and that she had been shot found a woman who died of an apparent gunshot injury. They took a man into custody.

Police responded to a home on Cold River Road at about 11:30 p.m. Monday, where they found the woman. They have not released any names.

They said the nature of the shooting is under investigation.

Man, 30, dies in Pittsburg snowmobile crash

A 30-year-old man has been killed in a snowmobile crash in Pittsburg.

The New Hampshire Fish and Game Department says Eric Tatarinowicz was riding on a trail with friends on Monday when he lost control of his snowmobile and went off the trail, hitting a tree.

A rider who happened upon the scene began CPR, while others rode to a house to call for help. Officials say there's no cellphone coverage in the area of the accident.

Tatarinowicz was pronounced dead at the scene.

Officials say the Seabrook man was an experienced rider. He was only about 15 minutes into his trip when the crash occurred. Officials are calling it a tragic accident.

Couple accused of taking $100K in jewelry from neighbor

Police say a husband and wife have been accused of taking over $100,000 worth of jewelry from their 70-year-old next-door neighbor.

Jacob and Lauren Stibs were taken into custody Saturday.

The neighbor said 37-year-old Jacob Stibs worked odd jobs around her Manchester home. In August, she noticed she was missing cash and jewelry. She was able to retrieve some items, but learned most were sold at area pawn shops.

Arrest warrants were issued for the couple, who had since moved away.

Stibs was charged with 10 counts of theft by deception and 10 counts of receiving or possession of stolen property. Thirty-year-old Lauren Stibs was charged with receiving or possession of stolen property.

It wasn't immediately known if they had lawyers and no phone numbers could be found for them.

Seafood company shut down over food safety violations

The Department of Justice says a high-end Maine seafood company has been shut down for repeated food safety violations and unsanitary conditions.

A federal judge on Friday signed a consent decree of permanent injunction against Mill Stream Corp., which does business as Sullivan Harbor Farm.

Authorities say the action followed repeated warnings by the Food and Drug Administration. The agency found that the company's products were prepared, packed and held under unsanitary conditions.

The agency also found rodent excrement near where smoker trays are cleaned and apparent black mold on the door frame of a freezer.

The company was founded in 1992 and has annually made about 75,000 pounds of smoked fish and fishery products.

No one from the company was available to comment.

– The Associated Press


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