2 Rhode Island men plead not guilty to conspiracy to sell drugs, other charges


BENNINGTON -- Two men are being held for lack of $100,000 bail on drug charges after a local woman said they forced her to sell crack cocaine and tried to get her involved in prostitution.

Juan A. Cuthbert, 28, of Providence, Rhode Island, pleaded not guilty Tuesday in Vermont Superior Court to conspiracy to sell drugs, sale of cocaine, possessing a weapon while committing a crime, and misdemeanor cocaine possession.

Nicholas O. Ranglin, 28, also of Providence, pleaded not guilty to conspiracy to sell drugs, cocaine sale, cocaine possession, and simple assault.

According to an affidavit by Bennington Police Officer David Faden, on Monday at about 5:39 p.m. he was sent to South Branch Street where a woman said five men from Rhode Island had come to the apartment she shared with her boyfriend and would not leave. She said they were drug dealers and one had a gun.

The woman said the males were brought to the apartment by someone she knows, and that they wanted her to sell crack cocaine for them and be a prostitute. She said she had been involved with those activities in the past. An argument ensued and Ranglin punched her boyfriend in the face, while another, Cuthbert, displayed a pistol.

The woman said Ranglin said he would give her $700 per week to sell crack and gave her some to sell on July 5, which she did, but a male stole the rest. These sales took place at the boyfriend’s apartment on Pleasant Street.

Ranglin and Cuthbert were found in a 1997 Infiniti on Pleasant Street. Some 1.7 grams of crack cocaine was found in the glove compartment. Numerous cell phones were found in the vehicle as well, which police say is often an indicator of drug selling. On the cell phones were pictures of the woman making the complaint.

Police said both Ranglin and Cuthbert are under supervision by Rhode Island corrections officials for drug related crimes.

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


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