Facing charges of heroin possession, identity theft

BENNINGTON -- A Winhall man is facing charges of identity theft after he allegedly gave a false name to state police who then found him to be in possession of heroin.

Christopher R. McLean, 30, pleaded not guilty Monday in Vermont Superior Court to a felony count of identity theft, and misdemeanor counts of false information to police, and heroin possession. He was held for lack of $1,500 bail.

According to an affidavit by Vermont State Trooper Robert Zink, on Oct. 22 at 10:22 a.m. he saw a vehicle traveling along Ways Lane in Manchester cross the center line twice, so he pulled it over. Both the driver and the passenger, McLean, had open sores on their faces and hands and appeared thin and emaciated. The driver identified herself through her driver's license, while McLean said his first name was "Jonathan."

Zink found a Jonathan McLean in the driver's license database, but the McLean in the vehicle did not match the description of the one Zink found a record of. The man claiming to have a last name of McLean in the car gave a date of birth that matched the McLean in the computer, however he could not give a Social Security number or previous address.

McLean was detained, gave his real name, and was searched. Zink found a small bag of heroin in McLean's right shoe. The bag had a picture of a ghost and was labeled "GHOST." Prior to searching McLean, Zink said he saw the top of a hypodermic needle in the car and the torn off end of a plastic baggie, which he said was reason to suspect drugs were involved.

McLean had an active warrant for heroin possession in Windham County, Zink wrote. The driver of the vehicle did not allow him to search the vehicle, so it was impounded then searched after a warrant was obtained. A second heroin baggie was found in the car.

Keith Whitcomb Jr. at kwhitcomb@benningtonbanner.com or follow him on Twitter @KWhitcombjr.


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