Vergennes Police Log: City police assist DCF with family case

VERGENNES — Vergennes police on Aug. 8 helped Department for Children and Families personnel remove four children, the oldest a teenager, from a Meadow Lane home at which Vergennes Police Chief George Merkel said living conditions were determined to be highly unsanitary and unsafe.
Merkel said the DCF was investigating reports of poor conditions at the home and allegations of child abuse. The Aug. 8 visit confirmed the living conditions were unacceptable, he said, while the DCF is investigating the abuse allegations.
DCF officials first placed the children at the home of a relative, but their mother picked the three youngest children up there the next day and eventually Vergennes police asked Vermont State Police and Burlington police to help find the parent and the three children. Merkel said police were also told a threatening text message was sent to a Mary Johnson Children’s Center employee working in the MJCC Vergennes summer program.
Burlington police found them on Aug. 10, and took the mother to the University of Vermont Medical Center for counseling, while DCF retrieved three children. Merkel said the oldest child was found in Vergennes on Aug. 11.
In other incidents between Aug. 8 and 14, Vergennes police:
•  On Aug. 8 cited David C. Pullman, 28, of Grand Isle for refusing to submit to testing for driving under the influence of drugs and ticketed him for possession of marijuana and drug paraphernalia, all following a North Main Street traffic stop.
•  On Aug. 8 checked out a complaint that a tractor-trailer truck was parked on the wrong side of South Water Street near the Small City Market and blocking driveways; it was gone when police arrived.
•  On Aug. 8 looked at an empty South Maple Street home at which a light had gone on and learned a storm door had blown open and triggered a motion sensor.
•  On Aug. 8 ticketed a motorist for possession of a small amount of marijuana and for speeding on West Main Street; the department canine alerted on the drug.
•  On Aug. 9 responded to a Macdonough Drive home, where a resident found a strange man in his shower. The man explained to police he thought it was a public building and apologized.
•  On Aug. 10 helped the Addison County Sheriff’s Department with a DUI at Field Days.
•  On Aug. 10 accepted a lost wallet found by a citizen and contacted its owner.
•  On Aug. 11 dealt with a minor two-car accident on Main Street.
•  On Aug. 11 heard from a First Street resident that she had received a threatening Facebook message from a friend of her son.
•  On Aug. 11 looked for a man reported to be hanging around in a car at Shaw’s Supermarket, but could not find him. Police received the same complaint the next day, and spoke to him; they were told he was waiting for a relative to return from work out of town, and would wait instead at the Agency of Transportation commuter lot.
•  On Aug. 12 checked a report of two dogs in a locked car at Shaw’s; the car was gone when police arrived.
•  On Aug. 12 ticketed a motorist for possession of paraphernalia and for speeding on West Main Street.
•  On Aug. 12 helped VSP by trying to find a car reported to be speeding on Hawkins Road in Ferrisburgh; they could not find it.
•  On Aug. 12 helped the sheriff’s department near Field Days, where a deputy was trying to pull over a pickup doing doughnuts at the intersection of Route 17 and Field Days Road. The driver tried to elude police, but crashed after a short pursuit. He did successfully flee on foot, even though Vergennes police deployed their canine. The sheriff’s department seized the vehicle and obtained a search warrant for it.
•  On Aug. 13 cited Amy Gendreau, 47, of Vergennes for domestic assault and lodged her at the Chittenden Regional Correctional Facility when she was uncooperative with police, who said additional charges are possible for her use of threatening language and gestures directed at them. 

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