Man accused of assaulting woman, smashing car with gun

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BENNINGTON >> A Rupert man is being held without bail after a woman accused him of attacking her and smashing the windows out of her car with the butt of a gun.

James V. Wadsworth, 20, pleaded not guilty in Vermont Superior Court Friday to first degree aggravated domestic assault, aggravated stalking with a deadly weapon, and misdemeanor counts of unlawful mischief, and driving under the influence of alcohol.

According to an affidavit by Vermont State Trooper Alexander Saxby, on Thursday at 1:24 a.m. he responded to Route 153 where a woman had fled her home after reporting being assaulted.

She explained she had gone to a party with Wadsworth where he had consumed six beers. She said they had been dating but broke up in September. While he was driving her vehicle home, he began shifting between first gear and park in an attempt to break the transmission. He then attacked her, pulling out some of her hair and trying to strangle her. She punched him to get him off her, and cut her hand on her rings.

He then threatened to kill her then himself while calling her names. He drove to his mother's home where he informed the woman he would be retrieving a gun so he she could watch him kill himself with it. She locked the doors of the vehicle and when he came out he proceeded to smash in the windows with the gun's butt and his fists.

She then left the vehicle and sought help from Wadsworth's mother and stepfather. They were unable to stop him from attacking the car, and eventually she was able to find her keys and drive away in it.

Once she left, he sent her text messages saying she would never see him again. He also sent her a message via Facebook while she was speaking with police. Saxby called him, but he hung up when Saxby identified himself.

Not long after she had left the scene, Wadsworth's stepfather's truck went past her at a high rate of speed. She did not see Wadsworth in the vehicle.

Saxby and another trooper went to Wadsworth's parents' house where they found broken glass in the driveway. No one answered the door and through a window they saw a gun leaning against a wall.

His parents returned and told police they did not see the incident but knew no gun was involved. They had been out looking for Wadsworth and had not found him, but did hear from him that he was someplace warm. They denied driving Wadsworth from the scene. His mother said she believed the woman was the aggressor in the incident.

Police were not able to find Wadsworth, but cell phone data indicated he was in the Granville, N.Y. area.

At 5 p.m., Wadsworth turned himself in at the State Police barracks in Shaftsbury after a warrant for his arrest was applied for.

Contact Keith Whitcomb Jr. at 802-447-7567, Ext. 115.


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