August 8th, 2013
The Burlington Free Press announced last week that it was laying off 13 employees, including five reporters, editors and photographers in the newsroom. Over the past decade, the Free Press’ weekday circulation has dropped by nearly half, from 50,000 to 26,000. Since the Free Press switched to a tabloid format and raised its subscription rates in June 2012, it has lost more than 10 percent of its weekday sales.
It’s an impossibly beautiful summer morning in Vermont — and I’m leaving the state on the last Saturday of July to go sit in a dirty church basement in Providence, R.I.
My travel takes me south through the mountain towns of Jamaica and Townshend along Route 30. There’s a farmer’s market along the way, and in another town they’re getting ready for a parade.
On the shortcut through Brattleboro I pass the old ski jump on the edge of town, near signs protesting a skateboard park.
VERGENNES — Vergennes police on July 31 arrested a city man for the second time in less than a week on larceny charges, and this time he was jailed.
Police said Tyler Flynn, 21, of Vergennes was lodged at the Chittenden County Correctional Center for lack of $10,000 cash bail after allegedly stealing a laptop computer from a second street home and selling it to a Burlington store.
Flynn, who five days before was cited for stealing copper wire and then released with conditions, was cited for petit larceny and violating the conditions of his earlier release.
ADDISON COUNTY — Vermont State Police rushed to a three-car accident on Route 22A in Panton on the evening of Tuesday, July 30.
Police report that the three drivers involved in the crash were Duncan Sewall, 18, of Milton, Mass., in a Honda Pilot; Charles Swinton, 22, of Ticonderoga, N.Y., in a Chevy van; and Jordan Stearns, 17, of Ferrisburgh (police did not report what he was driving).
This collision left all three vehicles disabled.
MIDDLEBURY — Middlebury police responded to a report of a fight in progress at a Seminary Street Extension residence on Aug. 5. Police said they found a man and a woman, both drunk, who had been involved in a dispute. Police said they took the woman into protective custody, while the man was taken to Porter Hospital to meet with counseling service officials because he had threatened to take his own life.
In other action last week, Middlebury police:
•Investigated a trespassing complaint at the municipal pool off Buttolph Drive on July 29.
BRISTOL — On June 24 Bristol police responded to a report of an armed robbery on South Street.
A white male wearing a hooded sweatshirt had confronted a woman as she came out of the alley behind Green Mountain Shoe and Apparel, where she had disposed of household trash. The woman was forced to the ground and to give up her wallet.
Police reported last week that one suspect was identified, but they had insufficient evidence for an arrest. Anyone with information on this matter is still encouraged to contact police at 453-2533.
Norman Maclean ends his novella “A River Runs Through It” with a sentence at once both simple and profound: “I am haunted by waters.”
There are times I know what he means. Most of the time, though, I am haunted by fish. Not by fish in general, but by specific fish in particular places. And without exception, they are fish I have not caught.
It’s no secret St. Albans has a drug problem. But the problem can’t be localized. It’s not a St. Albans problem. It’s a Vermont problem, and its tentacles reach into every alley corner, every hamlet, every city in the state. For verification, all one has to do is to read the court report, talk to any of the folks involved in law enforcement, or, saddest of all, talk to those within the medical community. It’s pandemic.