February 19

Vermont police back bill to create cold-case investigator

Vermont has at least 57 unsolved homicides and more than 30 inactive missing person cases dating to 1946.

By Beth Garbitelli
The Associated Press

MONTPELIER, Vt. — Vermont police are supporting a new bill in the state legislature that would establish a force dedicated to cold cases to restart old investigations and potentially give families of victims of unsolved murders some of the answers they are looking for.

Major Glenn Hall, the commander of the state police Bureau of Criminal Investigations, on Wednesday described for lawmakers what cold case families go through.

“They wake up every day wondering what happened, they go to sleep every night wondering what happened,” Hall said. “And that’s the truth, they live that. It’s really nothing you can really imagine unless you’ve been through it or if you have somebody that’s close to you that’s been through that.”

The bill’s sponsor, Berlin Republican Rep. Patti Lewis, said her motivation is to help families who are involved in those type of cases obtain closure.

“If it was my daughter, I would want to know,” Lewis said.

Unsolved homicides are an important issue for the state, according to Hall.

Vermont has at least 57 unsolved homicides and more than 30 inactive missing person cases dating to 1946, according to police data. Hall said the bulk of those cases are from the 1970s and 1980s.

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