Frustration with Burlington shootings, theft boils over online

Police, rescue workers on scene of double killing at Decatur Street Sunday night. Wayne Savage photo

by Mike Bielawski, for KeepVermontSafe.com

The Queen City saw more crime this past weekend, including a double homicide involving a Crips gang member, two other illegal gunfire episodes, and the police station set afire.

Online commentators are apparently frustrated by the continued trend of more shootings, retail thefts, and other serious crimes over the recent years since the City Council defunded their police department by about a third.

@JustinTuthill challenged those who insist Burlington is still safe to defend yet another rough weekend. He wrote, “Where is our, “Burlington isn’t that bad” crew? #VTPoli Three shootings and a police station set on fire in one weekend. Maybe time to reassess our policies” the tweet states. There was no response as of early Monday afternoon.

A double shooting

At 9:13 on Sunday evening, the police department got calls about gunfire at a residence on Decatur Street. Police responded and found two victims, one already dead and another who died shortly afterward at the hospital. Both men were shot in the head.

Members of the BPD’s Detective Services Bureau as well as the Chittenden County Gun Violence Task Force are investigating the case.

Another shooting

Just a little over an hour earlier there was another shooting that may have been related to this but that hasn’t been confirmed yet. The same police report states that the department got reports of gunfire from the area around 101 Main Street.

“Responding officers did not find any victims or perpetrators. Witnesses reported seeing two males flee, in apparent possession of a firearm. Patrol officers recovered ballistics evidence sufficient to confirm a gunfire incident,” the report states. “… It is currently unknown if the two incidents are related.”

Arson at the police station

The police are reporting that there was arson at the police station set at about 2 AM on Monday morning, just hours after the department had to deal with the shootings.

The report states, that someone went into the vestibule of their department and set fire to items in the room. This activated the sprinkler system which mixed with the smoke and caused enough damage to force a temporary relocation for their dispatch center. They had to work out of the South Burlington department until the fire department was able to declare the building OK again for that work.

The report also states, “The criminal investigation into this incident is ongoing. No persons were injured in the fire, but it is currently estimated that police headquarters sustained thousands of dollars of damage.” An arrest was made Monday.

More frustrated responses on social media

On VtDigger’s posting of their article on the double shooting, there were numerous commenters on X who were also expressing frustration.

@pnshdvermonster wrote in apparent sarcasm, “Stop fear-mongering. Burlington is perfectly safe. These clearly have nothing to do with the rampant drug use and unhoused immigrants.”

@CarlyMarie32 suggested that out-of-staters have brought soft-on-crime policies to the state. He wrote, “Welcome to Vermont, where politicians moved in from another crappy state to make Vermont crappy! Keep voting blue 🤪😳”

@BaizouDr would like to see whoever lit the fire at the station brought to justice.

“Setting the fire to make the department scramble seems very deliberate to cause chaos. I hope the perpetrator is as vigorously investigated as the presumed black murderers,” she wrote.

@RowdyYates8 reminded that the department was defunded by about a third by the City Council back in 2020. He wrote, “DEFUND THE POLICE IS WORKING as ”PLANNED”. THIS IS WHAT PEOPLE WANT.”

Another, @busted_chard, took aim at Chittenden County District Attorney Sarah George stating simply, “@SarahFairVT is bad.”

More such comments can be read at X.

The author is a reporter for the Vermont Daily Chronicle

17 replies »

  1. Oh, perhaps we just need to invite the true leader of Vermont to come visit and we’ll get things in order.

    Let’s have Vermont’s President Xi come visit like he did in California….

    and suddenly they fix things people have complained about for years. Can you now see where the true alliance are?

    • Were you at the Trump rally last weekend where he was touting Xi and how he “took care” of heroin users? (I can give you the quote, I’ve already used it once here.) It’s funny to see the MAGAS go so far right that they became Commies lol

      • He stated they don’t have a drug problem because dealers are given the death penalty. The suggestion that this observation makes DJT or his supporters communists is just silly. Who wants the rule of law and who turns a blind eye to millions being killed by illegal drugs?

      • As someone that has traveled extensively in Asia and trained in defensive shooting, I was duly impressed with the how safe I felt there unarmed. Certainly more so than Burlington of late. These are not wealthy countries. Lacking resources to deal with an addiction epidemic and the street crime that follows. By instituting capital punishment for trafficking, (not addiction) any opiate supply is effectively non existent. This holds true for Singapore, Malaysia, Philippines, China and much of the Arab nations. There is no other proven solution. As his style, Trump was being starkly honest. Most of us respect him for that.

      • You do realize the opium wars brought China to their knees for over 100 years from 1850 to 1950. You do realize we have fentanyl coming from China through Mexico to America? You do realize they have a long memory and a long-term plan? You do realize Xi is coming to meet Newsom not Trump?

        And no I didn’t go to the rally, can you fill me in? You seem to know all bout it.

        btw, some of have been talking about this for YEARS, Trump is just catching up.

      • Seeing how Governor Newsome cleaned and sanitized San Francisco instantly to roll out the CCP red carpet for Xi – I fail to see your point. It reminds me of a tenant cleaning their apartment before Mr. Landlord shows up for inspection. Are you for Tawain sovernity or not? Being the riots breaking out in DC last night, there is more confusion and violence on tap here than anywhere as the youth go wild biting and chewing the hands that feed. Waking up to reality is a tough pill to swallow…been there.

  2. When will Vermonters stop voting for all the progressive left wingers in Vermont government? Well the answer to this and “how bad does it have to get” Can be found in Dan Bongino’s reply to this question. “It’s not bad enough yet!” When it gets bad enough then people will vote for change, so what we are experiencing now means its not bad enough yet.

    • It’s not just how bad it gets, it’s where it gets bad. As long as the Marthas Vineyard crowd and their ilk are safe, happy and raking in the money, don’t expect change.

  3. VTDigger….wonder why there comment section disappeared right around the time of the killer sniffles?

    The destruction of BTV is being done intentionally….nobody could be this dumb. Miro and his cronies are waiting in the wings to steal the real estate for pennies on the dime.

  4. Thank the progressives in Vermont, from Montpelier to Burlington politicians especially Burlington more concerned about pandering to people’s imaginary pro nouns than the crime or drug addicts who od weekly and get brought back. Too soft on criminals look at the people that have had dozens of run ins with the pd and they still get released the next day because God forbid someone’s feelings get hurt.

  5. Progressives and the righteous, high idealistic (but with no principles) Vermont voters are responsible for this Orwellian Dystopia that engulfs Vermont. These are the same bored , guilt ridden, self loathing elitists in search of some sense of self worth. Generally bitter, wanting to appear smarter, higher intellectually and with a higher moral plane than all others. The same people who have the “hate has no home here” lawn signs (oh, the irony!). Could these people be any more despicable? They will never accept responsibility for this mayhem and will be doubling down at the next election. I’m sad for Vermont and wish it would regain it’s charm and greatness. However, the Progressive cult like mindset that permeates Vermont is just too formidable to overcome. It will take 3-4 generations to dig out of this societal dumpster fire.

  6. @BaizouDr would like to see whoever lit the fire at the station brought to justice.

    “Setting the fire to make the department scramble seems very deliberate to cause chaos. I hope the perpetrator is as vigorously investigated as the presumed black murderers,” she wrote.

    As to that one, just gotta say that guy was never really the criminal type. Used to work with him, definite hard wiring issues to be sure, I’ll leave it at that.

    • He’s 62 and didn’t hurt anyone. To see him prosecuted like a murderer would be absurd, obviously.