BENNINGTON — Police said a male suspect has been arrested in a killing in downtown Bennington on Monday.
The Bennington Police Department is withholding the suspect’s name until criminal charges are filed. It also has not identified the female victim.
The incident is the first reported homicide case in Bennington – or the county – this year.
According to a news release from BPD Chief Paul Doucette, around 11:15 a.m. Monday, town police received a call about “a male attacking a female” along the Walloomsac River walkway between North and School streets.
Police found “a female victim on the ground just off of the walkway suffering from a significant laceration,” Doucette said. An officer provided first aid until the Bennington Rescue Squad arrived, he said.
After getting a description of the suspect, a BPD officer reportedly found him on School Street. Police tried to arrest him once a second officer arrived at the location.
The suspect resisted arrest but was detained after a brief struggle, Doucette said. “A weapon believed to be involved in the attack was recovered by officers,” he said in the release.
The victim was taken to Southwestern Vermont Medical Center, where she died of her injuries later Monday, police said. The body has since been transported to Vermont’s Office of the Chief Medical Examiner for an autopsy.
Contrary to social media reports, no bomb or explosive device was involved in the attack, Doucette said. Shortly after the incident, someone ignited fireworks in the area of Depot Street, he explained.
As of Monday evening, it was unclear whether the suspect has already been charged or when he might appear in court. Bennington County State’s Attorney Erica Marthage couldn’t immediately be reached for comment.
Bennington County’s last known homicide was the fatal beating of Christopher Sharby, 46, which authorities said happened in Bennington last September. A Bennington man, Joseph Cattani, 48, is facing manslaughter and aggravated assault charges in Sharby’s death.
The Bennington Police Department, the lead investigating agency, said it continues to investigate the Monday killing and is asking anyone with information to contact Detective Sgt. Jason Burnham or Detective Corey Briggs at 802-442-1030 or through the BPD website, benningtonpolice.com.
Vermont State Police and the Bennington County Sheriff’s Department also responded to the incident.