Vermont State Police Log: Troopers bust driver who allegedly smoked pot

ADDISON COUNTY — A Vermont State Police trooper was patrolling Route 125 in Hancock on Wednesday, Oct. 29, looking for suspicious activity when he pulled into the parking area at the trailhead of the Long Trail at around 12:40 p.m. Trooper Justin Busby reported that as he pulled in he saw Elyssa Osborne, 25, of East Middlebury in the driver’s seat of a compact SUV lighting a marijuana cigarette.
Busby investigated and reported that Osborne had stopped to smoke a joint before she returned to her residence. State police received consent from the accused and searched the vehicle. Busby said the search uncovered more marijuana and drug paraphernalia, which he seized. He cited Osborne for possession of marijuana.
In other recent activity, troopers:
•  On Oct. 28 were told that a fugitive from justice — 26-year-old Michelle Guadagnoli — was residing at a residence on Sand Road in Ferrisburgh. Guadagnoli, originally from California, had an active, extraditable warrant for her arrest issued out of Fort Collins, Colo., for failure to comply on a charge of aggravated motor vehicle theft. Troopers took Guadagnoli into custody without incident at around 1:15 p.m. and lodged her without bail at the Chittenden County Correctional Center.
•  On Oct. 29 at 5:42 p.m. tried to pull over a vehicle driven at 74 mph by Gemmar Oconnor, 29, of Shoreham on Route 74 in Shoreham. Police said Oconnor refused to pull over and continued increasing his speed to over 90 mph. Oconnor then turned onto 22A and allegedly continued at speeds in excess of 90 mph. After Oconnor eventually stopped on Route 22A in Shoreham, policed arrested him and cited him for attempting to elude a police office and for careless and negligent driving.
•  On Oct. 29 at 9:54 p.m. stopped a motor vehicle driven by Galen D. Helms, 25, of Monkton on West Street in Bristol for a traffic infraction. The trooper reported that Helms was driving while under the influence of intoxicants, but Helms refused to provide a preliminary sample of his breath at roadside. The trooper took Helms into custody for suspicion of DUI and transported him to the New Haven state police barracks for processing. Helms was cited for DUI 1.
•  On Oct. 30 at 7:15 p.m. responded to a two-car crash on Route 116 south of the four-corners with Route 17. Police report that 18-year-old Caroline J. Cote of Bristol was driving a Volkswagen Jetta too closely to the Ford Escape driven by Katherine A. Jackson, 56, of Rutland, so that when Jackson braked to slow down, Cote’s Jetta rear-ended her. No one was injured, but both vehicles were damaged.
•  On Oct. 30 at an unreported time responded to a single-vehicle collision on East River Road in Lincoln. Police report that the driver of the 2004 Subaru WRX that was totaled in the crash was driving under the influence of intoxicants. They identified the driver as Charles R. Varty, 21, of Middlebury. The trooper said Varty’s preliminary breath test showed a blood alcohol content of 0.113 percent; the legal limit for driving is 0.08 percent. Varty is due to answer a charge of DUI in Addison County Superior Court, criminal division, on Nov. 17.
•  On Oct. 31 at 3:35 p.m. received 911 calls from several individuals reporting a reckless driver on Route 7 in Salisbury. Police identified the driver as Todd Norris, 42, of Shoreham and cited him for careless and negligent driving. Anyone else who witnessed the incident is asked to contact the Vermont State Police at 802-388-4919.
•  On Nov. 1 at eight minutes past midnight attempted to initiate a traffic stop on Hewitt Road in Bristol on a vehicle spinning its tires. The trooper reports that the vehicle in question quickly accelerated westbound on Hewitt Road. Apparently due to the speed the driver lost control of the vehicle and crashed into the home at 574 Route 116 South in Bristol. The driver, later identified as 20-year-old Edward Lafayette of Lincoln, was transported to Fletcher Allen Health Care to be treated for his injuries, and police said he would be cited for DUI, speeding and careless and negligent driving.
•  On Nov. 1 at 3:44 a.m. looked into a report of a vehicle off the road on Maple Street in Waltham. The trooper said his investigation showed that Michael P. Merrigan, 24, of Waltham was driving a 2003 Chevy Impala southbound on Maple Street when he lost control of his vehicle. Merrigan provided a preliminary sample of his breath and his blood alcohol content was measured at 0.129 percent; the legal limit is 0.08 percent. He was cited for DUI.
•  On Nov. 1 at 10:36 p.m. were called to a reported family fight in Shoreham. The trooper said his investigation showed that the primary aggressor was Jason Vincent, 30, who when police were called had left the residence and was en route back to his residence in Bristol. Troopers along with Bristol police and state game wardens responded to Vincent’s Bristol home and made contact with him. Further investigation showed that Vincent was under the influence of intoxicants. He provided a preliminary sample of his breath and his blood alcohol content was measured at 0.110 percent. Vincent was also involved in a domestic dispute. Police arrested Vincent; cited him for DUI, domestic assault, interference with emergency services and reckless endangerment; and lodged him at the Chittenden County Correctional Center for lack of $2,500 bail.
•  On Nov. 2 at 12:16 a.m. stopped a vehicle driven by Lawrence E. Martell, 55, of Lincoln on Briggs Hill Road in Bristol for a traffic infraction. Police said a breath test showed Martell’s blood alcohol content was 0.175 percent at 12:25 a.m.; the legal limit is 0.08 percent. Police cited Martell for DUI.
•  On Nov. 3 at 11:22 p.m. responded to a two-car crash on Route 22A in Orwell. The trooper reported that a 2003 Subaru WRX driven by Eric S. Morang, 39, of Watervliet, N.Y., sideswiped a 2005 Ford Focus driven by Julia E. Austin, 32, of Benson. Austin was transported to Porter Hospital to be treated for minor lacerations to her face, and Morang left the scene and was later located in Fair Haven. Police arrested Morang and cited him for leaving the scene of an accident.
•  On Nov. 3 began investigating a report that between Oct. 25 and Nov. 3 someone had entered a Salisbury home and stolen a gun and a Stihl chainsaw. The gun was described as an older, bolt-action .300 Savage with foreign engravings on it. Anyone with information on these items or this crime is asked to call state police at 802-388-4919.

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