Game warden impersonators arrested

Following continued investigation, including by detectives with the Vermont State Police Bureau of Criminal Investigations, police have charged two Highgate men with impersonating game wardens and assault in connection with a Nov. 20 incident at a Highgate home. 

Investigation shows that Storm Choiniere, 29, and Douglas Barratt, 53, both of Highgate, had previously sought unsuccessfully to purchase large fuel tanks from the victims. Subsequently, Barratt and Choiniere returned to the victims’ home at about 3:30 a.m. Nov. 20, and falsely identified themselves as game wardens with Vermont Fish & Wildlife who were investigating deer jacking.

Once victim Dennis Nadeau opened the door and asked for identification, Choiniere allegedly pointed a gun at him, and both suspects began to assault him and his wife. Investigation also shows that Choiniere attempted to prevent Wendy Nadeau from calling 911. Both suspects fled the scene on foot after Dennis Nadeau was able to call police.

Choiniere is currently incarcerated on a probation violation charge. He was cited Dec. 15 on suspicion of the above charges (and three others) arising from this incident and is due for arraignment Jan. 5 in St. Albans. Barratt was arrested Tuesday on the above charges and ordered jailed for lack of $50,000 bail. Barratt is scheduled to be arraigned at Dec. 16 in St. Albans.