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Multiple arrests result from incident in Burlington’s City Hall Park

By Timothy Page,

Tensions flared in Burlington’s City Hall Park on the afternoon of June 17th, as officers from the local police department responded to a call regarding an active arrest warrant. The target of their operation was Alex Morits, a 20-year-old resident of Richmond.

Upon arriving at the scene around 5:15 pm, the officers wasted no time in attempting to apprehend Morits. However, their efforts were met with resistance as Morits attempted to flee, leading to a physical altercation as the officers grabbed hold of him.

As the struggle unfolded, a large and aggressive crowd began to gather, adding to the volatility of the situation. Among the onlookers was 43-year-old Jeramie Shadle of South Burlington, who began shouting at the officers, further escalating the tension.

Despite the chaos, the officers managed to gain control over Morits, but their attention was soon diverted by another disturbance within the crowd. Jenna Munson, a 27-year-old woman from Essex, threatened to strike the officers, prompting them to issue commands for her to back away and create space.

Munson, however, defied the officers’ orders and pushed one of them, leading to her immediate arrest. Shadle, undeterred by the unfolding events, attempted to physically assault the officers, resulting in his own arrest as well.

The situation took a further turn when Joseph Hackett, a 36-year-old Burlington resident, inserted himself between an officer and the arrestee, impeding the officers’ ability to carry out their duties. With limited resources at the time, the officers were forced to let Hackett go, but not before noting his involvement for future action.

True to their word, the following day, on June 18th, officers located Hackett and took him into custody for impeding public officers, adding another layer to the already complex incident.

As the dust settled, the Burlington Police Department found itself faced with a trio of arrests, each carrying their own criminal histories that painted a concerning picture of the individuals involved.

Munson’s record included a prior charge for simple assault, while Shadle’s extensive rap sheet spanned numerous offenses, including violations of court orders, felony charges, assaultive crimes, and violations of probation or parole.

Hackett’s criminal history was equally troubling, with failures to appear, violations of court orders, felony convictions, assaultive crimes, and violations of probation or parole littering his record.

The events of those two days served as a stark reminder of the challenges law enforcement officers face daily, as they navigate the delicate balance between maintaining public order and upholding the rule of law, often in the face of volatile situations and individuals with checkered pasts.


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