Peacham man threatened to douse victim with gasoline and set her afire, police say
by Guy Page
Mack Varnum, who police say kidnapped a woman and threatened to pour gas on her and light her on fire is on the loose, whereabouts unknown, after someone posted his bail and sprung him from jail last week, the Caledonian-Record reported Monday. UPDATE: Tuesday, after a warrant was issued for his arrest, Varnum turned himself in at the Caledonia County Courthouse.
The Peacham resident faces a possible life sentence if convicted of attempted first-degree murder, kidnapping and other charges. Police say that on February 23, the victim, a 33-year-old woman, was picked up on the side of the road near Varnum’s residence in Peacham by Varnum and Nichole Cloutier in Varnum’s truck. She was forcibly restrained and bound. The victim was driven in the Peacham and Danville area and restrained for several hours, while her life was threatened – including the threat to set her afire on the side of the road.
At one point the victim was left alone in the truck, enabling her to break free enough to drive away in the truck and escape. She then drove herself to St. Johnsbury Village.
According to a report in Monday’s Caledonian-Record, Mack Varnum was released (after someone paid his $50,000 bail) on conditions he not leave his Peacham home.
Varnum had a 24-hour curfew, except for cleared departures for legal and medical reasons. But when state police conducted a compliance check, he was nowhere to be found. Authorities Monday requested and were granted a warrant for his arrest.