Court in brief

BENNINGTON — The following cases were recently heard in Vermont Superior Court Bennington Criminal Division:


Before Judge David A. Howard

- Michael P. Watson, 55, of Shaftsbury, pleaded guilty to misdemeanor driving under the influence—second offense (amended from felony driving under the influence—third or subsequent offense). Watson received a 12-to-18 month suspended sentence with probation and a 96-hour prison sentence. The charge stemmed from a March 1 offense investigated by Vermont State Police. A count of felony third offense DUI test refusal was dismissed by the state.


Before Judge David A. Howard

- Jacob Empie, 22, of Bennington, pleaded not guilty to felony possession of child pornography (two counts) and a misdemeanor count of the same. He was released on conditions and will return to court on Dec. 6. It's alleged that Empie was in possession of child pornography on or about Sept. 21. The investigation was conducted by a detective with the Bennington Police Department assigned to the Bennington County Special Investigations Unit and members of the Vermont Internet Crimes Against Children Task Force.

Before Judge William D. Cohen

- Miguel E. Maisonet, 39, of Bennington, received a six-to-eight month prison sentence with a work camp recommendation. Maisonet pleaded guilty on Sept. 18 to misdemeanor simple assault (amended from felony aggravated assault). The charge stemmed from a May 20 offense investigated by Bennington police.

Ed Damon can be reached at, at @edamon_banner on Twitter and 802-447-7567, ext. 111.


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