Vermont State Police Log: Public help sought in Whiting shooting

ADDISON COUNTY — Vermont State Police are asking members of the public to come forth with information they have on a shooting incident in Whiting this past Thursday morning.

At approximately 5:15 a.m. on April 15 troopers from the New Haven state police barracks responded to a report of gunshots fired into a home on West Road in Whiting.

Several adults and one child were at the home at the time, but no one was injured. Nevertheless, they described a scary incident in the pre-dawn hours. Someone came by the house and fired approximately nine gunshots at the residence from outside before leaving. Investigators believe that more than one gun was used.

Troopers canvassed the immediate area and located several shell casings in the roadway. They collected those and other evidence — including projectile fragments — from inside the home.

State police on Friday said they were conducting interviews and gathering evidence but had not, at that point, identified a suspect, nor had they nailed down a motive for the shooting.

State police spokesman Adam Silverman said troopers investigating a crime would not ask about immigration status of crime victims or witnesses unless immigration status is an essential element of a crime or is necessary to solving the crime and arresting a suspect. He emphasized that state police are not obligated to communicate with federal immigration authorities regarding the immigration or citizenship status of any individual.

Anyone with any information regarding this incident is asked to contact the New Haven barracks at (802) 388-4919. You can also submit an anonymous tip online at vsp.vermont.gov/tipsubmit. Det. Sgt. Henry Alberico and Det. Trooper Adria Pickin are investigating.

Separately, troopers on Friday evening put out a call asking for the public’s help in finding a missing man in Bristol.

Walter Rusch, 63, of Bristol was reported missing from his home at 5:45 p.m. on April 16. Rusch was last seen at home overnight Thursday into Friday but was gone by 6 a.m. He is believed to be on foot and might have been spotted walking in downtown Bristol at about 11:30 a.m. Friday.

Police said Rusch did not take his personal effects with him. The case did not appear to be suspicious, but there were concerns for Mr. Rusch’s welfare.

 He was described as a white man, 5 feet, 11 inches tall, weighing 165 pounds, with brown hair and blue eyes. He was wearing a moss-green rain jacket and dark-colored pants.

Anyone with information or who sees a person fitting Mr. Rusch’s description is asked to call the Vermont State Police in New Haven at 802-388-4919. Tips also may be provided online at vermont.gov/tipsubmit.

In an unrelated incident, state police are seeking information on a theft in New Haven. On April 10 at about 7:45 p.m. troopers received a report of three kayaks stolen from Otter Creek along Twitchell Hill Road in New Haven. The kayaks, valued at approximately $1,000 each, were described as:

•  Small, bright red, single seat, rudder with a string.

•  Small, bright yellow, single seat, black rudder.

•  Large, orange, double seat, no rudder, new.

About 30 minutes before to this incident, a vehicle with a bright red kayak on its roof was reported speeding southbound on Morgan Horse Farm Road in Weybridge, where the driver reportedly destroyed a mailbox. Video footage showed the vehicle looked to be a white Ford Focus hatchback, but no registration was visible.

Anyone with information relating to this incident is strongly encouraged to contact the New Haven Barracks at 802-388-4919.

In other recent activity:

•  On April 16 at 11:01 p.m. responded to a report of a family fight in the Bluebird Lane neighborhood of Starksboro. Police said their investigation showed that Charles Carpenter, 27, of Starksboro had caused serious bodily injury to an intimate partner.

Troopers cited Carpenter for first degree aggravated domestic assault and lodged him at the Northwest Vermont Correctional Facility.

•  On April 19 at around 6:17 p.m. responded to a report of a motorcycle crash on Lake Dunmore Road in Leicester. Police said that 22-year-old Jozef Sloma of Leicester was taken by helicopter to UVM Medical Center to be treated for what they characterized as “suspected moderate injuries.” The hospital could not give out any information on his condition. See a full story elsewhere in A section.

•  On April 21 at around 10:30 p.m. responded to a trespassing complaint at a Silver Street home in Monkton. After investigating, police cited Brittany Zwynenburg, 31, of Monkton for unlawful trespass and cited Jeremy Broderick, 40, of Monkton for accessory before the fact.

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Addison County Independent