Westmore man dies in head-on crash

The following is a selection of police incidents that occurred recently in Vermont, as reported by Vermont State Police

DRIVING FATALITY in EAST CHARLESTON – Nov. 16 at 8 am, Vermont State Police along with Fire and Emergency Services responded to a two vehicle crash on RT 105 in East Charleston. A Subaru driven by Dean Burns, 41, of Westmore crossed the center line and crashed head on into a Ford Explorer driven by Taryn Hunt, 42, of Glover. EMS pronounced Burns dead at the scene. Hunt was transported to North Country Hospital for non-life threatening injuries.    

INSTATE ARREST WARRANT IN HANCOCK – November 16 at 2:30 pm, Vermont State Police in Royalton responded to a disabled vehicle on Vermont Route 125 in Hancock. The vehicle, unattended, was blocking one lane of traffic. Troopers later located the operator, Kristine Gowdy, 35, walking on Vermont Route 100 in Hancock. Gowdy had an instate arrest warrant out of Caledonia County. Gowdy was arrested, transported to the Royalton Barracks, and then transported to Southern State Correctional Facility.

RELEASE VIOLATION IN WARREN – November 16 at 8 am, Vermont State Police received a report of a female who had knocked down a trash can and recycling bin, and had screamed profanities in the area of Elm Street, Warren. Vermont State Police responded to the area and identified the female as Margaret Gile, 50, of Warren. Investigation revealed Gile had violated her conditions of release. Gile was taken into custody and transported to appear in Washington County Superior Court.

SPEEDING IN CABOT – 2 pm November 16, State Police stopped a 2017 GMC truck for traveling 81 mph in a posted 50 mph zone on US RT 2, near Danville Hill Rd, in Cabot.  The operator was identified as Randy Stoddard, 64, Lyndonville. He cited for Excessive Speed and is scheduled to appear in Washington County Superior Court.

WANTED PAIR BAGGED IN RANDOLPH – November 16, Trooper from the Royalton Barracks assisted a Deputy from the Orange County Sheriff’s Department in conducting an investigation of two known wanted subjects, Trisaia Junior, 32, and James Lumbra, 34, who were believed to be at an apartment on Hale Street in Randolph. They were observed in the residence and attempted to hide, but were located in the basement of the building. Junior and Lumbra were taken into custody without incident and transported to Southern State Correctional Facility for lack of bail.

ABUSE PREVENTION ORDER VIOLATION IN WATERBURY – On Nov. 15, Vermont State Police in the Middlesex barracks received a report of a violation of an Abuse Prevention Order. Investigation revealed David Horton, 40, had violated a court ordered Abuse Prevention Order by contacting an individual who he was prohibited to contact. In Waterbury, Horton was issued a citation to appear in Washington County Superior Court and released.

DUI #2 IN LINCOLN – November 15 at 5 pm, Troopers from the New Haven Barracks responded to a report of a two vehicle crash on Downingsville Road in the Town of Lincoln. There were no reported injuries as a result of the crash. Upon arrival Troopers suspected the at fault operator, Randy Little, 31, of Lincoln, to be under the influence of intoxicants. Little was subsequently arrested for suspicion of DUI #2. Little was cited to appear in Addison County Superior Court, Criminal Division for the charge.

DUI#4, DLS in ST. ALBANS – November 14 at 3:30 pm, Vermont State Police in St. Albans received a report of a possible intoxicated driver, Troopers located the vehicle which was operated by Scott Sheltra, 43, of Newport. He was arrested and brought to the St. Albans Barracks for processing. Sheltra was charged with DUI #4 and Criminal DLS.

CRIMINAL THREATENING IN SHELDON – Nov. 15 at 10 AM, Vermont State Police received a 911 hang up call coming from Church St. in Sheldon. The caller would not identify himself, and instead of answering dispatch questions, threatened to beat up his neighbor. Troopers were able to identify this caller as Roger Brow (52 of Sheldon, VT). On scene, Troopers made contact with Brow and victim Silas White, 18. Brow was placed under arrest for Criminal Threatening for repetitively making statements of assault and harm towards White. Brow was transported to the Vermont State Police – St Albans Barracks for processing, and lodged at Northwest Corrections on $1,000 bail. Brow was cited to appear in Franklin County District Court.       

DUI, ELUDING, TEST REFUSAL ETC. IN WESTMINSTER – During the early hours of 11/15/20, the Vermont State Police received a report that Johnathon Kinney, 32, of Saxtons River was intoxicated and throwing and damaging property at a residence on Route 121. The caller informed 911 that Kinney had left the residence and provided a description of the vehicle. While leaving the residence, Kinney struck a parked vehicle belonging to the complainant. Kinney was located driving on Route 121 later that morning and, upon being signaled to stop, made a U-turn and attempted to flee in the opposite direction. Kinney then pulled onto a side road off Route 121 and stopped his vehicle. Kinney was suspected to be under the influence of alcohol and was requested to provide an evidentiary breath sample, which he refused. Kinney was cited for the above offenses and lodged at Southern State Correctional Facility for violations of his probation agreement.

POLICE DOGS FIGHT OUT-OF-STATE DRUG CRIME – in recent, separate incidents on both sides of Vermont helped apprehend out-of-staters with illegal drug connections who were fleeing human police, police say. 

According to Burlington police, on Friday, Nov. 13 a Colchester police dog sniffed narcotics in a vehicle, operated by Jason Kelsaw of Detroit, Michigan, which was parked at the Malletts Bay McDonalds. Kelsaw was being investigated by Colchester Police and the US Drug Enforcement Agency. 

Kelsaw then fled by car into the New North End of Burlington. After leaving the car he was tracked by two other police dogs. Eventually he was found by police in a New North End shed, and according to subsequent news reports surrendered without incident. 

A day later, on Saturday, November 14 Vermont State Police from the Royalton barracks saw a black SUV traveling south on I-89 at a high rate of speed, Vermont State Police said. 

Troopers caught up to the vehicle, attempted to initiate a traffic stop and the vehicle accelerated away from them. A pursuit was initiated and multiple Troopers with the Vermont State Police persued the vehicle until being instructed to terminate the pursuit. 

Troopers maintained visual contact with the vehicle until crossing into New Hampshire and  relaying the vehicle’s location to New Hampshire authorities. Authorities from New Hampshire apprehended and stopped the vehicle. The operator, identified as Erik J. Smith of East Hartford, Connecticut, fled on foot into the woods, and was pursued by a K9. 

New Hampshire State Police suspected Smith to be under the influence of intoxicants and charged him with possession of a controlled substance with intent to distribute. Smith was also found to be on federal parole. Vermont State Police issued Smith a citation for Grossly Negligent Operation and Eluding a police officer. Smith was cited to appear in Windsor Superior Court Criminal Division on 01/12/2021 to answer to the charges.

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