Police say man threatened woman with gun
By Patrick McArdle
STAFF WRITER | November 19,2012
BENNINGTON — A McCall Street man is being held without bail after a woman accused him of pointing a loaded gun at her during an argument on Nov. 10.
Christopher D. Violette, 23, of Bennington, was arraigned on Nov. 13 in Bennington criminal court on felony charges of first-degree unlawful restraint which risked injury, and first-degree domestic assault with a weapon. Violette pleaded innocent to the charges.
In an affidavit, Cpl. Christopher Lauzon, of the Bennington Police Department, said he was contacted by a woman on Nov. 11 around 9:40 a.m., who reported an assault involving a gun. Violette was detained a short time later, Lauzon said.
The woman told police she had gone out to visit her brother around noon on Nov. 10. She said Violette called her phone many times while she was visiting her brother but she didn’t answer.
She said she came home around 8 p.m. but the door was locked and when Violette returned he was “upset and intoxicated.”
According to the woman, Violette began throwing things and punching holes in the walls after they went inside. She told police that Violette “threw her around” throughout the night and into Nov. 11 until around 8:30 a.m.
Sometime between 10 and 11 p.m. on Nov. 10, Violette got the woman’s .45-caliber pistol, inserted a magazine, chambered a round and switched off the safety switch.
“(The woman) stated Violette put the loaded pistol to the temple of her head, threatening to kill her, her father and himself,” Lauzon said.
She told police that Violette left the home to get more beer and she was able to leave and contact the police.
According to the woman, Violette has been violent with her on other occasions in the past.
Lauzon said Violette had agreed to give a statement shortly after being taken to the Bennington police station.
“As I was explaining the allegations, Violette became agitated and refused to speak with me,” Lauzon said.
In the affidavit, Lauzon said he went to the home where the woman said the assault took place and found evidence that supported her account such as holes in the wall, empty alcohol containers, and debris which someone had cleaned up and thrown into a trash bag.
The woman took Lauzon to show him where her gun safe was in the home but she said it was now missing along with a rifle.
A hearing took place on Nov. 14 to determine if Violette would be given a chance to be released before the charges are resolved but Judge Cortland Corsones ordered Violette be held without bail.
Violette invoked his right to a speedy trial. A jury is scheduled to be drawn for what is expected to be a one-day trial on Jan. 8.
Violette is being held in the Rutland jail.