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Office of the Vermont Attorney General

Vermont State Trooper Will Not Be Prosecuted for Non-Fatal Officer-Involved Shooting Incident in West Haven

April 12, 2021

Contact: Charity R. Clark, Chief of Staff, 802-828-3171

The Attorney General’s Office today announced that it has concluded its review of the non-fatal officer-involved shooting incident that occurred on December 6, 2020, in West Haven, Vermont. The Attorney General’s Office is declining to prosecute Vermont State Police Trooper Craig Roland for charges related to the discharge of his firearm at Reginald Book, 70, of West Haven, Vermont, based on the facts and circumstances and consistent with Vermont law. In reaching this decision, the Attorney General’s Office reviewed all materials provided by the Vermont State Police, Major Crimes Unit, who conducted the investigation.

On December 6, 2020, the Vermont State Police responded to a family disturbance that had been reported to have occurred at a farm in West Haven. As a result of that investigation, it was determined that probable cause existed for the arrest of Reginald Book.

Mr. Book was subsequently located by Vermont State Police Troopers at a farm near where the family disturbance had been reported to have occurred. Mr. Book was operating a small transport bus in which he was the sole occupant. Despite several attempts by troopers to engage Mr. Book in a dialogue to explain to him that he needed to be arrested, processed, and released, he refused to cooperate or exit his vehicle.

A decision was made to prevent Mr. Book from leaving the farm property where he was found so that he could be safely taken into custody. Road spike strips were placed in the front and back of Mr. Book’s vehicle to impede or stop his vehicle’s mobility. As Trooper Jeremy Sullivan attempted to reposition a road spike strip in front of Mr. Book’s vehicle, Mr. Book unexpectedly engaged his vehicle and drove it in the direction of Trooper Sullivan. In response to Mr. Book’s actions, Trooper Roland discharged four rounds from his service weapon at Mr. Book’s vehicle. None of the rounds struck Mr. Book and Trooper Sullivan was not struck by Mr. Book’s vehicle. Mr. Book was later taken into custody and charged by the Rutland County State’s Attorney’s Office for offenses related to the incident.

In accordance with the Vermont Rules of Professional Conduct, the Attorney General’s Office, at this time, cannot comment further on the specific findings of its review. The Office can release additional information related to this decision when the criminal charges pending against Mr. Book are resolved.

All requests for video footage should be made to the Rutland County State’s Attorney’s Office and the Vermont State Police.

Last modified: April 12, 2021