• Man pleads guilty to three charges
    March 13,2014
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    Man pleads guilty

    to three charges

    BENNINGTON — A former Bennington resident who has a long history of impersonating law-enforcement officers pleaded guilty Tuesday to three misdemeanor charges based on two incidents from last year.

    Christopher J. Gagne, 39, who now lives in Missouri, pleaded guilty in Bennington criminal court to simple assault attempted by menace, using false pretenses to obtain less than $900 and providing false information to police in order to implicate another person.

    Under the plea agreement Gagne entered, two felony charges, first-degree unlawful restraint in a manner that risked injury and carrying a weapon while committing a crime were dismissed and a felony charge of aggravated assault with a deadly weapon was reduced to simple assault attempted by menace.

    Bennington County Deputy State’s Attorney Alexander Burke said the state had made the changes because the witness who had reported the alleged incident had credibility issues and the police had been unable to find a gun that was allegedly used by Gagne.

    In a separate docket, misdemeanor charges of possession of stolen property and false information were dismissed.

    That case involve an allegation from last year that Gagne, who had a “Mr. Fix-It” business last year, possessed an emergency frequency radio, whose owner said it had been stolen, and a heater that had been dropped off at his business but never returned or repaired.

    The second case involved an allegation that he had pointed a gun at a roommate during an argument in March 2013.

    Gagne was sentenced to serve one to two years in prison but all of that time was suspended and he was placed on probation instead.

    In 2012, Gagne was briefly appointed as Bennington’s town service officer, but he was removed from the position after local police received information that he had made false claims on his application, including that he had been a member of the police department in New Orleans.
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