Crime by homeless not just a city problem in Vermont

The Orange County town of Bradford continues to struggle with public behaviors and crimes reportedly committed by a growing number of homeless residents who have settled in town.

Bradford Police Department today reported that a second homeless man was taken into custody yesterday in connection with the recent burglaries of the Vittles coffee trailer, the Bradford Golf Club, and a camp in Fairlee.

Isaiah Taylor, 26, a transient, was arrested for burglary, grand larceny and other related charges. Eugene Kilchewski, 46, who was arrested on Monday was arraigned yesterday and remains in custody, according to BPD and as reported by VDC.

BPD states stolen property from all three crimes was recovered by police.

Taylor was arrested after he was located at 64 South Pleasant Street. That is the same downtown home that was the site of an alleged stabbing last week.

At 6 AM on August 24, Travis Guyette, 33, and Christopher Kirk, 48 became engaged in a physical altercation that resulted in Kirk being stabbed with a knife. Kirk was transported to CVMC where he was treated for his injuries and released. Later in the evening when Troopers went to the residence to speak with Guyette and effect an arrest, he physically resisted. He was charged with aggravated assault and resisting arrest, police say.

Bradford city leaders have been meeting for weeks about the growing violent and property crime, much although not necessarily all of it feared to be stemming from an influx of transients.

“It happens every year, but not like this,” a public official said in the August 2 Journal-Opinion, of the growing crime, nuisance behavior, and appearance of bodily fluids like blood, feces and vomit in public places. The public library, with its free wifi and water/toilet services, has been a particular area of concern. A citizen’s task force that formed to provide community solutions during Covid has been reprised to address this new problem.

Bradford isn’t the only small rural community coping with new levels of homelessness, of course. A federal report issued last December showed Vermont had the second highest rate of homelessness in the nation, next to California – an estimated 2,780 people.

Vandalism Tuesday night – The eastern Orange County town also saw a troubling vandalism incident last night, with no known connection (at present) to the transient influx.

Tuesday night, August 29 at about 10 pm, State Police were notified of a vandalism that occurred at “The Hub” Bradford Teen Center, located at 152 Main St, Bradford. Many witnesses saw a female break many windows and disrupt traffic. State Police are asking the public for assistance in identifying the female.

This story includes reporting from today’s online newsletter and recent print editions of the Journal-Opinion, the weekly community newspaper for Bradford and surrounding towns.

Categories: Crime

9 replies »

  1. Why not just let the people in town who are so concerned about the poor homeless open their doors for them 24-7 and that way they can just take what they want without getting in trouble for it!

  2. A federal report issued last December showed Vermont had the second highest rate of homelessness in the nation, next to California – an estimated 2,780 people.

    If you build it, they will come. Vermont has put out the social service welcome sign.

  3. I was plagued with homeless addicts lottering and camping on my riverfront, commercial property. Within a couple days the area was strewn with litter and syringes.. Well armed, I gathered, stacked, and burned everything. That was three months ago. No one has set foot on the property since. Guess they moved on to greener pastures?

  4. Wherever the liberal progressives congregate, usually failing downtowns because property is cheap, the homeless follows. They know where their bread is buttered

  5. When I was employed at the now closed Vt. State Hosp. in Waterbury, we saw the homeless start to “act out” every fall and eventually get arrested and brought to the state hosp. They would spend the winter in a nice warm environment where they got a bed, 3 meals and 3 snacks and all the cigarettes they could beg, borrow, or steal. Come April or May, many miraculously got better and were discharged back to mostly the Burlington area. Thanks to Shumlin, we now see these homeless on the streets year round. And the numbers have grown in proportion to pre-Irene times. Many people were helped at that hospital not just as a homeless shelter but as a hospital. Many stayed there for years because they needed the help. Now there is no real place for them to go. As the drug problems continue to increase the situation grows and becomes more dangerous. No longer is there any state hospitals in any state that I know of. Another big mistake created by big government. Check out the history of that hospital and see what the government did to cause it to go from a self supporting facility to closing. It is interesting to see how the involvement of the government in anything will destroy everything.

  6. Orange County – isn’t that Senator “let them get an extra blanket” MacDonald’s territory? Here’s your sign. Give all the credit where credit is due! Every lawmaker representing Bradford and Orange County are proud of their policies and the mayhem that follows. Be sure to give them all a kudos and “good job!” the next time you see them and send them all the crime news articles reporting their awesome representation and stellar accomplishments within their districts.

  7. I’m homeless i.e. do not have a permanent secure housing without leaks over my head.
    I am not an addict.
    I do not steal.
    I am part of my community.
    I try to serve and help others where and when I can.
    I am a writer and an artist.
    I’m 72 years old.
    The writer above who said, why don’t people open their homes had it right as did Jesus: Love they neighbor as thyself.
    Gabor Matte’s studies on addicts says that those with loving, forgiving support systems are more likely to actually recover.
    Those without housing are more likely to have housing — with a loving caring support system.
    What would YOU want your neighbors family and friends to do if YOU did not have housing – and not because you are an addict or thief…
    Look in the mirror brothers and sisters.
    But for the grace of God…