Vermont State Police Log: Icy road and accident close down App. Gap

VERMONT — Vermont State Police shut down Route 17 from the Appalachian Gap in Buel’s Gore down a quarter of a mile on the Starksboro side of the mountain after a car driven by a Bristol man started slipping backwards on the snow-covered road and flipped over on March 26.
Troopers report that Randy McWilliams, 35, was driving a 2007 Toyota in a heavy snowstorm near the crest of the hill at a little before 5 p.m. that Thursday when he felt his vehicle begin to slide on the snow covered roads. He told police that the Toyota then slid downhill toward the eastern side of the road where it went up onto snowbank and rolled over. coming to a rest in a lane of travel and upside down. McWilliams was reportedly wearing his seatbelt and uninjured in this crash.
Police reduced traffic to one lane after this crash and they reported that delays were kept to a minimum.
But, at 7:20 p.m. — about 45 minutes after clearing from the Toyota from the scene — state police were notified of a second incident at the same location. Troopers said 52-year-old Bruce Churchill of Groton, N.Y., was driving a 2012 Toyota Tacoma truck up the hill when the pickup and the snowmobile trailer it was pulling jack-knifed across both lanes of Route 17, facing uphill. Churchill told troopers that he attempted to make it up and over the hill when his vehicle lost traction and began to slide backwards, causing the jack-knife.
Route 17 was completely closed for several hours while crews worked to remove Churchill’s truck and trailer. During this time, police said, VTrans employees also properly addressed the road conditions in the area allowing delayed motorists to traverse up and down the hill without further incident.
Meanwhile, state police in the past week also tracked down two motorists who tried to outrun them in separate instances.
First, on March 26 at 10 17 p.m. troopers attempted to stop a vehicle driven by 18-year-old Brandon Yandow of Ripton for traveling at 75 mph in a 50 mph zone on Route 7 in Leicester. Yandow led state police on a short pursuit on Route 7 and Fern Lake Road before troopers backed off due to heavy fog and Yandow’s dangerous driving. But troopers found Yandow a short time later at his residence, arrested him and charged him with attempting to elude, careless and negligent driving, excessive speed, driving with a suspended license, and violation of conditions of release.
Then, on March 29 at around 6:30 p.m. state police received a complaint of a black Audi driving erratically on Route 17 in New Haven. Troopers stopped a vehicle driven by 37-year-old Leah Jamieson of Vergennes that they believed was the one in question.
During the stop, Jamieson fled from troopers in her vehicle, and was chased on Route 17 to Route 7. When troopers attempted to take Jamieson into custody, they said she resisted arrest.
Jamieson was transported to the New Haven barracks where she was cited for careless and negligent driving, attempting to elude, DUI-refusal, and resisting arrest. She was lodged at the Chittenden Regional Correctional Facility for lack of $50,000 bail.
In other recent activity, Vermont State Police:
•  Began investigating a burglary at a Plank Road home in Waltham on March 24. Police report that someone forced entry into the residence and stole a small amount of cash and prescription drugs.
Troopers also began investigating the theft of a red 1998 Plymouth Neon from a residence on Hooker Road in Leicester sometime on March 24 or 25. It has a dent in the driver’s door and a small fin on the trunk. The car belongs to Kayla Bronson of Rutland City,  police said.
Anyone with information on these cases is asked to contact the state police at (802) 388-4919, or anonymously online at www.vtips.info or by texting “CRIMES” (274637) to Keyword VTIPS.
•  On March 24 at 9:32 p.m. stopped a motor vehicle driven by Richard J. Bodington on Hardscrabble Road in Monkton for a traffic infraction. Police report that 19-year-old Bodington of Hinesburg was under the influence of drugs and the trooper cited Bodington for driving under the influence.
•  Assisted Vergennes police and Addison County Sheriff’s Department deputies investigated break-ins at several camps in Ferrisburgh on Feb. 26. That morning police looked into a report of a burglary at a seasonal cottage on Sleepy Hollow Lane that is currently vacant and on the market for sale. A real estate agent reported that she had gone to a Sleep Hollow Lane residence and found that someone had entered several residences and burglarized/vandalized them, and three men were at the residence she was checking. By the time police arrived the subjects had fled, leaving behind personal items as well as pellet guns and three “older” rifles. Seven homes in the neighborhood had been entered, with at least one damaged.
Vergennes police returned to the Sleepy Hollow Lane residence that was the subject of the first call and found four young men and three underage females there. Police seized a number of firearms and pellet guns from the group, issued the girls juvenile citations and released them to their parents.
In Monday’s edition, the Independent incorrectly reported that state police made the arrests; actually it was Vergennes police. The adults arrested were: 19-year-old Seamus C. Doolan of Essex Junction; Brian J. MacKenzie, 18, of South Burlington; Nathan P. Morrill, 20, of Burlington and Matthew J. Shepardson, 21, of Hinesburg. They each pleaded innocent to a felony count of unlawful entry of an occupied dwelling. Morrill was held without bail for violating the conditions of release from a previous arrest.
Investigation continues; anyone with information regarding these break-ins is asked to contact the Vermont State Police, New Haven barracks, at 802-388-4919 or Vergennes police at 802-877-2201.
•  On March 29 at 1:11 a.m. stopped a suspicious vehicle on Morgan Horse Farm Road in Weybridge, and cited the driver, identified as 59-year-old Matthew O. Bruch of Weybridge for driving under the influence. Bruch provided a preliminary sample of his breath, and police said his blood alcohol content measured 0.210 percent; the legal limit for driving is 0.08. 

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