Six Vermont State Troopers assigned to the St. Johnsbury barracks have been placed on paid administrative leave while they are investigated for conduct during an ongoing incident on duty last month. State Trooper David Garces was initially placed on leave for a police case that spread into New Hampshire and back into Vermont. State Troopers Colin Connery, Elisabeth Plympton, Luke Rodzel, Gabriel Schrauf and David Wicks were relieved of duty about a week later, according to two people briefed on the case. The case reportedly involved a possible domestic abuse complaint that started in Vermont and later went into the Haverhill, N.H. area, during the night of Dec. 22 and early morning hours of Dec. 23, police said. The troopers were trying to track the suspect. The internal investigation reportedly centers on the department’s policies concerning car pursuits and the use of spike strips to deflate tires of unresponsive drivers. The investigation will include statements from the troopers and video from their body and cruiser cameras, according to a person familiar with the VSP Internal Affairs Office. The St. Johnsbury barracks covers all of Caledonia County, much of Orange County and the southern half of Essex County, although the department contracts with the Essex County Sheriff’s Department to handle many of the calls for service. State police have about 53 vacancies across Vermont and troopers had been ordered earlier to take mandatory overtime work to plug shifts due to vacancies.
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