Vermont State Police Log: Thief drops cell phone at crime scene

ADDISON COUNTY — A man who broke into vehicles parked at a local trailhead apparently dropped his cell phone in one of the cars, and he surprised the owner of the car when he returned to retrieve it.
Vermont State Police report that someone broke the windows of and stole items from two motor vehicles at the parking area at the Watershed trail off Plank Road in New Haven late in the afternoon on Monday, Nov. 28. A local woman told a trooper that she came back to her vehicle to find a rear window smashed; she found a cell phone inside her vehicle that did not belong to her, and she put it in her pocket.
The woman recounted to police how a man arrived at the scene while she was sizing up the situation, grabbed onto her, took the cellphone in question from her pocket and fled the scene.
She described the man as a white male possibly in his late 30s, 5 feet-9 inches tall, approximately 160 pounds, wearing a black knit beanie, beige Carhartt pants and a dark jacket. He was last seen driving a red pickup — it was believed to be a Chevrolet S10 — with Vermont plates travelling westbound on Plank Road in New Haven.
Police said the woman was not assaulted when the man retrieved the cell phone from her pocket.
Anyone with information is asked to contact of the Vermont State Police at 802-388-4919. Information can also be submitted anonymously online at www.vtips.info or by texting “CRIMES” (274637) to Keyword: VTIPS.
The Vermont State Police remind hikers parking in secluded areas and trail parking lots to please avoid leaving any property in plain view from outside of the vehicle on seats or floor areas.
They are currently investigating this and other car break ins throughout Addison County.
Troopers are also looking into break-ins a few days later at Mount Philo State Park in nearby Charlotte. On Dec. 1 at approximately 11:30 a.m. troopers responded a report of two car break-ins at the park’s trailhead. Someone had broken side windows in both cars and stole approximately $3,700 of personal property, including an Apple Mac Pro laptop computer, designer purse and wallets, $600 in cash, and other personal belongings. The total value of damaged vehicle glass is approximately $500. Anyone with information on this incident is asked to contact Cpl. Andrew Leise at VSP Williston 1-802-878-7111.
Meanwhile, Sgt. Matthew Daley of the New Haven state police barracks announced that law enforcement agencies will conduct sobriety checkpoints in Addison County over the next three weeks. This will be done in an effort to monitor the flow of traffic along Vermont’s highways in the interest of detecting and arresting drivers under the influence of alcohol or any drug that has impaired their ability to operate a motor vehicle.
In other recent activity, troopers:
•  On Nov. 28 at 3:50 p.m. were conducting a directed patrol concentrating on impaired and suspended drivers on Route 7 in Ferrisburgh when they stopped a vehicle driven by 40-year-old Justin Bassett of Vergennes for an expired vehicle registration. Troopers seized the vehicle’s registration plates and had it towed; then they cited Bassett for driving with a criminally suspended license.
•  On Nov. 29 responded to a two-vehicle collision on Route 7 in New Haven. No one was injured. Police alleged that 51-year-old Christopher Driscoll of Bristol struck a second vehicle from behind. They cited Driscoll for driving with a criminally suspended license.
•  On Nov. 30 at 11:15 p.m. responded to a one-car crash on Route 17 east of the intersection of Mountain Road in Addison. Police believe that the driver, identified as 20-year-old Sierra Pomainville of Addison, was under the influence of intoxicants. Police cited Pomainville for driving under the influence.
•  Report that on Dec. 1 at approximately 6:50 a.m. Dahcila Curley, 26, of Hancock was driving a 2016 Ford Fiesta eastbound on Route 125 in Hancock when he lost control of the car and it left the roadway. The rear end of the Ford struck a telephone pole and the vehicle rolled onto its roof. Curley was not injured in the crash and the vehicle was towed from the scene. Green Mountain Power had to replace the broken telephone pole.
•  On Dec. 2 at approximately 6:20 p.m. were notified of a one-car rollover with entrapment on Route 17 in Starksboro. State police report that 59-year-old Joseph Natale of Howell, N.J., was driving a 2014 Honda CRV northbound on Route 17 near Stave Brooke Drive. The Honda began to slide on the snowy and slick road and it travelled down a small embankment and overturned. Natale and his passenger sustained minor injuries as a result of the crash. Natale’s vehicle was totaled as a result of the crash. Neither alcohol nor drugs played a part in the crash.
•  On Dec. 3 at a few minutes after midnight, troopers stopped a vehicle on Route 7 near Thomas Dairy in Rutland for a motor vehicle violation. Police said driver Christopher M. Lovelette, 25, of Brandon displayed signs of alcohol impairment, and that Lovelette’s privilege to operator a motor vehicle was suspended for a prior DUI conviction. Lovelette was screened for DUI and a preliminary sample of his breath showed a breath alcohol content of 0.113 percent; the legal limit for driving is 0.08. Police cited Lovelette for driving under the influence and released him to a sober party. He was issued a civil ticket for marijuana possession. A passenger in the vehicle was also issued a notice of violation for having consumed alcohol under the age of 21.
Vermont State Police on Monday dealt with a raft of motor vehicle crashes attributed to the snowy and slippery road conditions; see details in accompanying story.

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