State Police arrest multiple suspects in drug bust; shootings, traffic accidents on the rise

The Vermont State Police have been seeing increased activity in drug trafficking, shootings and highway accidents.

Big drug bust

A police report indicates that troopers with the Middlesex Barracks and Barre City Police Department searched a suspicious residence with a warrant in Williamstown. Among other details, the report indicates that Rex Comstock, 42, a local resident, was arrested for the alleged distribution of crack cocaine.

state of Vermont

LAW ENFORCEMENT: State police carried out a big drug bust last week. In addition, they are seeing an overall increase in gun-related crimes and traffic incidents.

“State Police suspected that crack cocaine was being distributed from a residence on Graham Road, during the month of April they said,” News10 reported on Friday.

Troopers found large amounts of drugs, according to the report:  “about 35 grams of crack cocaine and 7.8 grams of powder cocaine allegedly belonging to Alexander Cotton, 28, of Springfield, Massachusetts. Troopers also alleged that about 13 lbs of marijuana belonging to Comstock and 200 mg of fentanyl belonging to Alana Perras, 33, of Cabot were found at the residence.”

Gun crimes on the rise

According to comments by the Vermont Department of Public Safety, gun crimes generally are on the rise in the state. Vermont has seen 94 violent gun incidents so far in 2022. These include three homicides, eight non-lethal gunshot injuries, 25 shots fired near others, 11 instances of property damage, and 47 threats with a gun.

Update on last Monday’s Burlington City Hall gunfight

During the early hours on May 13, a gunfight involving multiple parties was reported at City Hall Park in Burlington. On Thursday, an update from police said stray bullets hit numerous popular establishments, and one man narrowly escaped being struck in the head.

“Officers arrived on scene and provided immediate medical aid to the person with a bullet wound,” the police report states. “He was bleeding from his head. He was transported to the UVM Medical Center with a bullet wound channel that spanned between the back of his neck to his ear. His prognosis is good that he will recover.”

The update also indicates that numerous iconic locations in the popular city center were hit by stay bullets. “Initial investigation determined that this person and another engaged in a shootout that left bullet holes in the store front window of Burton Snowboard and Community Bank, both located on College Street. There was also a bullet hole in the newly erected public restroom in City Hall Park. Another bullet shattered a window at the Flynn Theater,” the report states.

Highway accidents on the rise

There have been 25 highway deaths in Vermont so far in 2022 — an uptick from the 19 accidents reported this time last year. Vermont’s highway fatalities “have been climbing steadily since 2019, and the 74 road deaths recorded in 2021 marked Vermont’s highest count in nearly a decade,” VTDigger reported.

Distracted driving continues to be a major culprit.

“Texting is the most alarming distraction,” states the Vermont Department of Health website. “Sending or reading a text takes your eyes off the road for 5 seconds. At 55 mph, that’s like driving the length of an entire football field with your eyes closed.”

Help on the way?

The state is struggling to fill in its officer vacancies. The State Police on Sunday put out a press release indicating that they are hiring Dan Nelson as a new recruitment specialist to the agency’s Office of Professional Development.

“The addition of Nelson to the VSP team comes at a time of staffing challenges for police agencies across the country. Currently, the Vermont State Police has about 48 vacancies in its authorized strength of 333 sworn troopers,” the release states.

Michael Bielawski is a reporter for True North. Send him news tips at and follow him on Twitter @TrueNorthMikeB.

Image courtesy of state of Vermont

6 thoughts on “State Police arrest multiple suspects in drug bust; shootings, traffic accidents on the rise

  1. I am a retired 70 year old ‘flat lander’ who moved here thirteen years ago from California. I moved into the Brattleboro area, got a job and rented an apartment nestled among the woods and meadows of this magnificent state. It was what I always dreamed of. The fact that I could walk away from my car without locking it and not having it looted or leaving my apartment unlocked without fear was like utopia to me. Things have changed in the past decade. Brattleboro has the dubious nickname ‘Brattlebronx’. It’s downright dangerous to walk downtown after dar. Homelessness is rife, drugs are everywhere. Gangs from the cities have set up shop, attracted by this state’s extremely generous welfare program, especially for single mothers with their anchor babies who come here, get housing and all the amenities this state offers for single mothers on the dole, then they are followed by their male friends who come here and set up shop.

    I used to be a left leaning democrat. But after watching this pretty Vermont river town go down the crapper they way it has I rethink my political policies and drift towards the right. This small town police force are unequipped for this onslaught and even if they could, their hands are tied by woke political correctness.

    I no longer live in Brattleboro but I still work there. I am not rich enough to afford the skyrocketing rent and I am not poor enough to benefit from the social programs and if I did there would be my self respect issues to keep me from submitting to that lifestyle. At the beginning of the Covid epidemic they rounded up all the homeless, a huge population, and put them up in the motels on the north and south side of town where, I watch from my work place, emergency vehicles and police cars constantly interceding in the violence and drama that go on there every night….after sundown.

    I arm myself now. I sincerely hope that I do not become a statistic in the gun violence count escalating in this once peaceful and lovely state I made my home in. But I am not an easy target. I’ve lived in big cities before. I know the story. And I also know that if I feel I must arm myself in a small Vermont town of 12,000 after dark. Something is very, very wrong.

  2. The policies of the Dem/Prog/Rinos (aka Uniparty) are responsible. We will see a whole lot more of this and don’t expect any help from our representatives or law enforcement. If we had any Sheriffs or law enforcement who know the Constitution (not only swear to it – know it!), the real criminals would be held accountable and we would not see this State spin into lawlessness.

    • Melissa,

      I am a retired Vermont Law Enforcement Officer. An iron clad case means nothing when you have weak States Attorney’s and Deputy States Attorney’s who either decline to prosecute or amend the charges down to the equivalent of a J walking ticket. I’ve seen it with Judges too. Don’t lay this on Law Enforcement. We are the bottom of the food chain here and we don’t get a say in the revolving door of Criminal Justice.

  3. “..gun crimes are on the rise..” Inanimate objects can’t commit crimes. Only people commit crimes. Maybe Vermont is getting more undesireable people. Vermont certainly needs its share of illegal aliens…invaders. Invaders that they get to care for and baby sit. When the impact finally hits…huge ‘affordable ‘ (read trash) housing developments , MORE crime, MORE whiners who feel discriminated against (don’t they all when they don’t get their way) . Those rolling black outs you will experience will be because of all these aliens sucking up electricity. And the farmland developed and destroyed. And then, something about freezing your asses off next winter! GOOD! All fueled by your stupidity. Communists!!

  4. I see people driving distracted all the time and it makes me wonder how many accidents are due to distracted driving. It’s illegal to text or talk on a hand held device while driving, but the law has no teeth. Unless the driver admits to driving distracted, law enforcement can’t prove it.

  5. It seems like going soft on crime has been nothing but a Jobs Programs for Attorneys.. Many of which seem to be Democrats.. oddly enough.

    Attorneys -along with counselors and that whole machine that benefits from this economy.. that has been built from no longer policing as we did before- when people understood that if they did the crime they’d do the time. Period.

    When do we start saying that what is going on is not working?
    Or are we just going to allow our nation to be transformed into a Zero Trust Society where we all need to live in gated communities with razor wire to keep us safe.
    It seems as though Burlington and Brattleboro are well on their way to just that.

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