Thursday July 4, 2013

KEITH WHITCOMB JR.

Staff Writer

BENNINGTON -- An 18-year-old who was shot with a stun gun while trying to flee police two years ago was sentenced to serve between 15 days and two years in prison after he was rejected from the court’s youthful offender program.

Branden T. Brooks, who at one time had a Pownal address listed with the Bennington Superior Court Criminal Division, entered conditional guilty pleas in 2011 to aggravated assault on a police officer, simple assault on a police officer, and disorderly conduct. In June of this year he was moved from the youthful offender program to the criminal court where he was sentenced.

His attorney, Kate Lamson, said the reason for the move is confidential.

According to an affidavit by Vermont State Trooper Jesse Robson, in May 2011 Brooks escaped from a Department of Children and Families facility in Benson. He wrote that police have had numerous issues in the past with Brooks fleeing. In July 2011, police received a tip that Brooks was at a home in the Alta Gardens Mobile Home park in Pownal. Robson wrote that he found Brooks inside the home he found Brooks partially concealed behind a washer. He learned the home’s owners had asked Brooks to find something behind it in order to stall him while police entered the home.

Robson wrote that Brooks moved when told not to, so he pointed his stun gun at him. Brooks complied briefly, then tried to run so Robson fired the stun gun just as Brooks closed a door between them.


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Robson opened the door and Brooks pulled a wooden gun cabinet down in front of the opening, hitting Robson’s hand. Robson said he entered the room and grappled with Brooks, and because of debris on the floor they both fell and got wrapped up in the stun gun’s wires, and were both electrocuted. Brooks became compliant at this point.

According to Robson, Brooks seemed happy that he had been shot with the stun gun and when taken outside informed some nearby children of his having been "Tased."

Contact Keith Whitcomb Jr. at kwhitcomb@benningtonbanner.com or follow him on Twitter @KWhitcombjr.