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EXCLUSIVE: Dangerous fugitive on the loose, “significant police presence” out tonight

By Michael Bielawski,

A presser by the State Police indicates that there is a fugitive wanted for alleged violent crimes currently on the loose in Vermont, as of mid-afternoon on Tuesday.

“Multiple law-enforcement agencies are seeking the driver of a stolen Ford F-250 who led police on multiple pursuits, nearly causing several crashes, through northwestern Vermont on Tuesday,” it states.

The police located an abandoned pickup truck in Winooski around 2 p.m. The report says that this man has been on an active crime spree and Vermonters must take precautions when they are out.

Violent attacks on motorists

It states, “Members of the public should be aware that the suspect has attempted to steal several vehicles throughout the day, including by force, and should be considered extremely dangerous. People should ensure their vehicles are locked when unattended and be aware of their surroundings when returning to their cars.”

The identified suspect is Andrew Brace, 39, of St. Albans. Brace already has a reputation with the police.

The report states that he “has had multiple confrontations with police in the past several weeks, including in Colchester and Berlin. Brace is about 5 feet 11 inches tall and weighs 220 pounds. He was last seen wearing black athletic-style shorts and no shirt and is believed to be on foot in the Winooski area.”

It goes on that things began in Grand Isle County in the morning. Then gradually the person continued through different towns including Swanton, Fairfield, Georgia, and St. Albans.

“Nearly causes multiple crashes”

The report continued, “Brace nearly caused multiple vehicle crashes and intentionally steered at police vehicles, forcing them off the road. As of 2 p.m., no crashes had occurred, and no injuries had been reported.”

It continues that law-enforcement agencies involved so far include “the Grand Isle County Sheriff’s Department; the police departments in Milton, St. Albans, Swanton, and Winooski; the wardens with the Vermont Department of Fish & Wildlife; the Enforcement and Safety Division of the Vermont Department of Motor Vehicles; and the Vermont State Police. A significant police presence is active throughout the area.”

Where do fugitives go?

According to Psychology Today, there are known patterns that fugitives routinely follow. An article written by career trial attorney Wendy L. Patrick, J.D., Ph.D., talks about some of the red flags communities should watch out for. She also wrote a book titled Red Flags, which examines how to identify alarming patterns in people who seek to take advantage of others.

“David M. Bierie and Paul J. Detar [professionals in criminology and epidemiology respectively] note that fleeing offenders have to prioritize ‘core needs,’ which include, in addition to avoiding capture, finding safety, shelter, and income—which can be complicated by background checks or other methods of verifying identity and employability. This combination of needs drives their choice of community.”

It is noted that often fugitives will return to their hometown or other familiar settings.

They are also known to settle in places where they can make money under the table. Patrick writes, “Without sufficient funding to continue their journey, some fugitives extend their stay wherever they are and engage their employable skills in order to survive. Because we don’t expect to find them applying anywhere that requires a background check, they are more likely to seek out people who can hire them for odd jobs on a part-time basis.”

People who see or know anything should call 911 or the State Police in St. Albans at 802-524-5993. Anonymous tips can also be taken here.

The author is a writer for the Vermont Daily Chronicle


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