The Vermont State Police have issued a press release with further details about last night's taser incident in Thetford. See the full text below the fold...
Colonel Thomas L'Esperance, Director of the Vermont State Police, provided the following statement at a press conference which was held at the Department of Public Safety Headquarter building in Waterbury earlier today:
On June 20th, 2012 at approximately 1511 hours, Troopers from the Vermont State Police Bradford Barracks were contacted by an Intake Crisis Technician at Dartmouth Hitchcock Medical Center regarding a person that was reportedly suicidal. That person called the hospital threatening to harm and kill himself and others, it was also reported that the person had weapons and was prepared to use them. The person was identified as 39 year old Macadam Mason.
Three Troopers from the Bradford Barracks initially responded to a residence, located at 1100 Sawnee Bean Road in the Town of Thetford. The Troopers saw Mr. Mason inside the residence through a window and knocked on the door and asked him to come out and speak with them. Mr. Mason was uncooperative and refused to comply with the Troopers request to speak with them. The Troopers remained at the residence and called a family member of Mr. Mason asking if the family member could respond to the area to provide the Troopers with recent history of Mr. Mason that could aid in deescalating Mr. Mason. When Mr. Mason's family member arrived, Mr. Mason ran from the residence into a wooded area behind the residence. Troopers called for medical personnel to come to the area to be available to assist if there assistance was needed. A Vermont State Police K-9 was also called in to assist with the search for Mr. Mason.
A couple hours later Mr. Mason returned to his residence and was addressed by a Trooper and several verbal commands were directed at him, which he refused to comply with. The Trooper noticed that Mr. Mason was unarmed, unarmed, therefore he lowered his weapon and drew his taser. The Trooper ordered Mr. Mason on the ground and Mr. Mason lowered to a squatting position, the Trooper continued to tell Mr. Mason to get on his stomach, at which time Mr. Mason stood up and moved toward the Trooper with a closed fist yelling aggressively at the Trooper. Mr. Mason and the Trooper were now less than ten feet from one another. The Trooper continued with verbal commands for Mr. Mason to get on the ground, and after several failed attempts for Mr. Mason to comply, the Trooper deployed his taser, striking Mr. Mason in the chest. Mr. Mason went to the ground and the Trooper immediately rendered first aid as he observed Mr. Mason was unresponsive. The Trooper administered CPR and continued so until Rescue personnel took over the care of Mr. Mason and transported him via ambulanced to Dartmouth Hitchcock Medical Center in Lebanon, NH, where he was pronounced dead at the hospital.
Several Vermont State Police Investigators from outside the area were contacted to conduct an investigation. The completed investigation will be forwarded to both the Orange County State's Attorney and the Attorney General Office for review. The name of the Trooper involved in this incident is being withheld for a 24 hour period, per policy of the Vermont State Police.
The autopsy is scheduled for 1:00pm today at the Office of the Chief Medical Examiner's Office in Concord, NH. Results of the autopsy information are not under the jurisdiction of the State of Vermont, as that portion of the investigation will be directed by the authorities of the New Hampshire Medical Examiner's Office.
No further information is available at this time.