Bristol Police Log: Officers investigate phone scam

BRISTOL — Bristol police investigated a theft by deception and fraud case, which occurred on Oct. 19 in the police district.
Police reported that a male subject claiming to be a relative of the victim called the victim on the telephone and requested that a large sum of money be sent to Mexico. The story was that the victim’s relative had been in an automobile accident, and the money would be used to keep the relative out of jail.
A second male subject contacted the victim soon after, claiming to be an attorney for the relative and requesting that additional money be sent to pay the legal fees. Police noted that the victim was promised the return of the money after the “accident” was resolved.
“In these cases we have found that the unknown source requests cash be sent via Western Union or MoneyGram to a destination for pick-up,” Bristol police said in a press release. “Once these funds are transferred they are often non-refundable as the receiving source accepts the money within minutes of the transaction.”
Police recommend that anyone who is contacted by telephone, mail or email regarding a monetary transaction that they have not initiated, first check the validity of the initiating party prior to supplying any information or money. Anyone who believes they have been the victim of a similar crime may contact the police at 453-2533 if they are in Bristol, or if they are outside Bristol village then they may call the Vermont Attorney General’s Office at 802-828-3171 or the Better Business Bureau at 508-625-4800.
In other recent activity, Bristol Police:
•  On Oct. 5 received a report of a person regularly parking in the handicap parking space by the elementary school. A plate number was obtained.
•  On Oct. 5 provided a breakdown of crime statistics in the five-town area to a member of the Mount Abraham Union High School board.
•  On Oct. 6 responded to a North Street residence where a senior citizen had banged his head. The gentleman was transported to Porter Hospital.
•  On Oct. 6 executed a search warrant at a Bristol residence on Lincoln Road. Cousins Jeffrey and Jason Kimball, age 32 and 30, respectively, were arrested. Jason Kimball was charged with felony possession of heroin and Jeffrey Kimball was charged with a misdemeanor for possession of marijuana. Jason Kimball was also charged with possession of stolen property, police said, because evidence from a prior car break-in on Mountain Terrace was found in his possession.
•  On Oct. 8 assisted Vermont State Police in the case of Buck Mitchell, 20, who allegedly used someone else’s cell phone to contact the plaintiff, which allegedly violated a relief from abuse order. Bristol Police Chief Kevin Gibbs said state police cited Mitchell.
•  On Oct. 8 issued a notice against trespass order to a former Mount Abe student, who was on school property after he had been asked to leave.
•  On Oct. 9 received a report from a Maple Street resident about vandalism on West Pleasant Street. A tree had allegedly been uprooted and several street signs in the area were reportedly bent, stolen or damaged.
•  On Oct. 9 received a complaint of threatening phone calls made to a female student. The student reported receiving threats from an unknown caller. Police are working with the phone company to determine where the calls came from.
•  On Oct. 10 assisted the Barre City police in attempting to locate a woman for an upcoming domestic violence trial. The woman had been receiving mail at a Starksboro address. Bristol police found that she was no longer residing at the address and left a message with current residents on behalf of the Barre police.
•  On Oct. 10 assisted state police with a one-vehicle accident on Carlstrom Road. The trooper who responded investigated the accident.
•  On Oct. 10 cited Michael Rougier, 41, of Bristol for driving under the influence and felony possession of marijuana. “Around a third of a pound of marijuana was seized,” Gibbs said.
•  On Oct. 12 received a report of a wallet stolen from Holley Hall and later recovered. A juvenile reportedly took the wallet, attempted to use the cards at Merchants Bank, and then turned the wallet in to a Mount Abe school counselor.
•  On Oct. 13 responded to a multi-vehicle crash at the youth soccer jamboree at Mount Abe. “After requests from media for the name of the driver I released that information with a request, and in fact in some cases I begged the media, not to print that subject’s name because I was concerned for his safety,” said Chief Gibbs. “I would submit to the paper that I think it was irresponsible of both the (Burlington) Free Press and the Addison Independent to print his name. Our investigation has revealed that he was a victim of the crash as well due to a medical condition.”
•  On Oct. 15, Chief Gibbs attended a volunteer training workshop at WomenSafe in Middlebury.
•  On Oct. 16 received a complaint from the Addison County Humane Society that a subject had abandoned a dog on a hill in Lincoln because it had allegedly urinated on the subject’s carpet. A dog was found in Ripton, and police are working to determine whether the complaint is valid and whether the dog retrieved in Ripton is the dog in question.
•  On Oct. 16 performed a background check on an applicant to the U.S. Army.
•  On Oct. 16, met with a female Mount Abe student who believed she was being stalked. Police have eliminated one suspect and are investigating others.
•  On Oct. 16 received a report that a male subject drove away from Maplefields without paying for just under $60 worth of fuel. A suspect has been identified.
•  On Oct. 17 responded to minor vehicle crash on Lawrence Lane. A car backing out of a driveway struck a parked vehicle; no injuries were reported.
•  On Oct. 17, held the third community forum on crime and drugs at Mount Abraham Union High School. Police will meet with the steering committee on crime and drugs to schedule the next meeting.
•  On Oct. 19, received a report that a female subject was receiving strange phone calls from an unknown male caller, who claimed that the female subject had his dog locked in her closet. Since no callback number could be obtained and the subject believed that the call had been placed to her in error, no further action was taken.
•  On Oct. 19 received a report from a Kountry Trailer Park resident that a female acquaintance was refusing to leave his driveway. The resident had reportedly allowed her to stay the night before; she was reportedly in her car and getting ready to leave when an officer arrived on the scene.
•  On Oct. 19 arrested David Collette, 28, of Bristol on an outstanding warrant for escape. Collette had failed to attend his assigned work crew, and a warrant had been issued for his arrest, according to the police report.
•  On Oct. 20 received a report of a loud stereo on South Street. Police advised the owner of the complaint but took no further action because, “You can play your stereo loud in the middle of the day if you want to,” said Gibbs.
•  On Oct. 20 arrested Irina Hagan, 35, of Monkton on a warrant for bad checks and lodged him at the Chittenden County Correctional Facility for lack of $675 bail.
•  On Oct. 20 received a second report of loud music, this time from a Mountain Street resident. A neighbor reported that her house was vibrating from the noise and that her son could not sleep. The party was located and the owner was informed of the complaint. The officer reported that the party had had a James Bond theme: “It says they were dressed as James Bond, one of the characters from a James Bond movie, or Austin Powers,” Gibbs noted, as he read from the report.
•  On Oct. 21, in the early morning hours, an officer responded to a complaint of trespassers on the roof of a Main Street building. No subjects were found; however, it was noted that a meteor shower was expected between 3 and 5 a.m. and it was believed that people had attempted to access the roof to watch the meteors.

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