BENNINGTON — A Shaftsbury man is accused of attempting to bribe police with cherry-flavored cake.
Edward Corey, 62, pleaded not guilty Monday in Vermont Superior Court to a felony count of grand larceny, and a misdemeanor offense of bribing a public officer. He was released under conditions, among them he not have contact with his father whom he's accused of stealing from. The court also ordered Corey to undergo a competency evaluation to see if he is able to stand trial. Corey represented himself at the arraignment, according to court records.
According to an affidavit by Bennington Police Cpl. Christopher Lauzon, on Jan. 16 Corey came to him with a box of items he wished to have taken to his father's doctor. Lauzon later learned that Corey's father had contacted Vermont State Police on Jan. 15, accusing his son of locking him out of his house, but later let him back in.
On Jan. 18, Corey asked police to conduct a welfare check on his father. Lauzon was the officer who went and was told by Corey's father that $6,000 was missing from the home. Corey's father said his son was the only other person with access to the home. He was reluctant to have Corey charged and asked police question Corey about the money, which they did.
Corey told police he took $2,000 from his father. He said it was the proceeds from an item he had sold and given his father a share of. "He didn't deserve it," was the reason Corey gave for taking it.
Later, on Feb. 12, Corey's father contacted police to say his son had taken $5,000 from his bank account. He said he allows Corey to take $150 per week, but never authorized $5,000. Police learned this is, in fact, a joint account and that both Corey and his father were allowed to take money from it. It was then that Corey's father decided to press charges regarding the missing cash.
Lauzon wrote that since issuing Corey a citation on Feb. 21, he has received multiple telephone messages and letters from him regarding settling the matter without going through court. Corey seemed to indicate that he had boxed all of his father's belongings up along with $5,000 and was prepared to turn it over.
"On February 24th, Edward sent me another letter and a cake packaged in a box wrapped in gift paper. On the inside flap of the envelope Edward wrote, 'Cake is to sweeten deal let's make it happen today.'"
Lauzon received two more letters from Corey, in them he was apparently upset about the manner in which Lauzon learned of the missing cash. Lauzon called Corey and told him to stop calling and sending letters. This upset Corey further and he hung up the phone.
— Contact Keith Whitcomb Jr. at 802-447-7567 Ext. 115