More charges for Bennington man accused of lewd conduct
BENNINGTON -- A Cyr Court man accused last month of hugging and kissing a teenage girl against her will is facing more charges alleging that he committed similar acts on two other young females.
Gary Partridge, 43, pleaded not guilty Monday in Vermont Superior Court two new felony counts of lewd and lascivious conduct with a child. On Jan. 15 he pleaded not guilty to a single count of the same. He was released from court under the conditions he not contact any of the complaining witnesses and must not have contact with anyone under 16 outside the presence of a certain adult.
Lewd and lascivious conduct with a child carries a penalty of between two and 15 years in prison, and not more than a $5,000 fine.
According to an affidavit by Bennington Police Detective Anthony Silvestro, on Jan. 15 two girls, a 12-year-old, and an 18-year-old were speaking to a Department for Children and Families investigator regarding the charges facing Partridge. The two girls said Partridge hugged them, kissed them, and touched their private areas.
Partridge is known to a relative of theirs.
Silvestro said the 12-year-old was interviewed on Jan. 21 and told police that Partridge's activities began when she was 11. She would be in a guest bedroom at a home on Cyr Court and Partridge would come in and kiss her on the lips. She said he would also touch her private areas with his hands. This would stop when she told him she was going to use the bathroom, and he would be gone when she returned. The girl did not know how many times this had happened.
The 18-year-old reported similar behavior, saying it began when she was 17. She said Partidge would hug her and try to kiss her, and he would attempted to touch her buttocks. She said this happened between two and three times, and one time Partridge succeeded in kissing her.
According to an earlier affidavit, a 15-year-old girl reported to DCF investigators that on Dec. 21 Partridge kept hugging her and trying to kiss her while she was in a home at Cry Court. She told police Partridge kissed her and made her want to "scrape her face off." He then asked if she planned to tell anyone about the incident.
The girl also told police she thought Partridge was taking pictures of her using a mobile device.
According to the affidavit, Partridge admitted to hugging and kissing the girl, saying he was in a "Christmas mood," and that he was sorry for upsetting her.
The affidavit notes that when Partidge was 17, he was charged with indecent assault and battery on a child in Hampden County, Mass., but it makes no mention of a conviction. Partridge's only other criminal record is a petit larceny charge from Vermont that he was sent to diversion for in 2009.
Contact Keith Whitcomb Jr. at firstname.lastname@example.org or follow him on Twitter @KWhitcombjr.
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