Police On Elm Street?

Did anyone hear of anything happening involving the police on Elm Street today? Just curious?

Comments | 31

  • Elm St.

    Yes, something did happen on Elm St. but I will wait till the information comes out in the newspaper.

    • Waiting...

      Is it something that can’t be discussed? Or are the details unclear?

      (I’m just confused about the waiting before answering the question.)

      • ...for next of kin to be notified

        I’ve been told it was an unfortunate, but unsuspicious, death of a female (ie, not a fight, or murder, or robbery).

        • Not in Newspaper today~

          I am part of a group called F.E.E.T. which stands for Frost, Elliot and Elm Triangle. Another death happening in our small turf is of concern. I hope that a newspaper, Reformer or Commons, will cover the story as some point.

          • Write it here if you know what happened

            Waiting for newspapers to cover things is part of why we started the site. Everyone is capable of asking questions and sharing what they know. We were all taught how to write in school.

            Reporters and editors check this site and get ideas for stories. If you write it up here and it is news, a newspaper story will likely follow. We see your (everyone’s) stories as headlines often.

            I always hope that someone who knows something writes it up here and informs us. : )

          • Long wait

            If you’re waiting for the Reformer to cover this story you have probably got a long wait. They don’t seem to be able to get information about what is happening in Brattleboro in a timely manner and when they do print things the articles often contain erroneous information or personal information that certainly can’t be considered “news”. As Chris suggested -better to look on ibrattleboro first.

          • The Reformer is what it is -

            The Reformer is what it is – a newspaper, albeit, increasingly old fashioned, but it still serves a lot of people’s needs.
            Comparing the Reformer in any way to iBrattleboro or any other online news sources is an apple-oranges thing. The total population of Windham County is 44,266 as of July 2011. In 2010 Brattleboro’s population was 7,414. Within the town and southern part of the county the Reformer is the primary paper and I think the Weekly Commons is second.
            The Reformer has an online edition but I don’t think it’s intended to be as almost “real-time” the way iBrattleboro is.
            It’s the diversity of the news sources that counts. A person’s individual need for news varies, and we all should be able to get what we want by utilizing what works best with what is available to us. I don’t think the Reformer needs to be criticized, as I sometimes read it on here, anymore than the Commons, cable TV news, radio news or other news sources need criticized solely on a comparative basis. They are not and cannot be homogenous.

          • My criticism of the Reformer

            My criticism of the Reformer comes from the frequently unprofessional reporting that I see in both their online presence-including their Facebook page and the print edition. They consistently print incorrect information with little regard to what the facts may actually be. And,in more than one instance they have printed personal information about people and/or situations that in no way can be considered news.Unfortunately,they are the only daily local ‘news’ publication that we have.I think if you’re going to publish a newspaper you should make sure that you know the facts before printing any story and, for goodness sake, have someone occasionally check for spelling errors.
            They could do much better than they currently do. Many other newspapers of the same size in other towns manage to do a professional and accurate job of reporting the news.

  • So, after all is said and

    So, after all is said and done, what the frack happened on Elm ?

    • as Chris said above

      There was a death, an unsuspicious one. There have been deaths here in Melrose too. People die.

    • Finally, on page 11 of April 13th Reformer:

      Bratt police investigate untimely death on Elliot Street Reformer Staff Friday April 12, 2013
      BRATTLEBORO – The Brattleboro Police Department is investigating the untimely death of a woman whose body was found in her apartment on Elm Street on Thursday morning.
      According to a press release from Det. Lt. Michael Carrier, at approximately 11 a.m. on April 10, the Brattleboro Police Department and other emergency services responded to the residence to find Samara Washington, 34, dead.
      Her body was transported to the Chief Medical Examiner’s Officer in Burlington for an autopsy to determine the cause of her death.
      The death is under investigation and at this point in time there is no reason to believe there is any threat to the public, stated Carrier.
      Minor detail: April 10th was Wednesday.
      I don’t think I knew her.

  • “People die.”

    Going out to Grace Cottage in Townshend there is a little Mom and Pop Deli down the street on Rt 30. On their newspaper rack at the top is the Reformer. Now, whether or not news of an unsuspicious death on our Elm Street here, should be considered news out there, is questionable. Same can be said for Newfane, Litchfield, Dummerston, etc., where I’ve seen the Reformer sold in stores as well.

    As KAlden points out the Reformer has “printed personal information about people and/or situations that in no way can be considered news.” This touches on a longstanding media problem. I believe that most reporting of incidents – deaths, robberies, assault – are nonessential news articles to the larger community or city. Obviously, the more sensational, the most likely it will be splashed around in the media. But the bottomline is – most are irrelevant to what the daily lives of the total viewing population need to know.

    iBrattleboro is not really just a Brattleboro website, but it is likely that its viewing audience is heavily populated from our town. There is a little semi-dirt road that runs along a tributary off of the West River populated with a string of homes. I doubt an unsuspicious death on Elm St, even if it was mentioned in the Reformer or iBrattleboro would be “news” to them.

    Even for the FEET group, an unsuspicious death is not always a matter for their concern. If the death was natural or an accident, the immediate family may prefer that their privacy is respected and then, it’s nobody’s business.

    Kalden also points out she is dissatisfied with the quality of the Reformer reporting. Personally, after six years of reading it I’m not too put off or alarmed by it, but I can understand why it would bother people.

    Chris and Annikee kinda keep it in perspective, it was an unsuspicious death – “People die.”

  • It's all the net~ is this too much information?

    BRATTLEBORO — A 34-year-old Brattleboro woman who was released from prison six days earlier was found dead in her apartment Wednesday.

    Authorities are investigating the death of Samarra Washington, said Brattleboro Police Detective Lt. Michael Carrier.

    Carrier said Washington was discovered in her Elm Street apartment at about 11 a.m. Wednesday. He said her body had been taken to the office of the chief medical examiner for an autopsy.

    Windham County Deputy State’s Attorney Steven Brown said Washington had been released from prison April 4.

    “She had been out of jail less than a week,” said Brown, who said Washington had been sentenced in November 2010 to a 16-month-to-6-year sentence on a combination of charges including forgery and false pretenses. She was convicted of selling cocaine in July 2011. Some of the cases dated back to December 2009, he said.

    “There was no sign of foul play,” Brown said.

    ______some of her arrest history from the internet________

    INCIDENT: Conditions of Release
    OFFICER:: Lynde CONTACT#: 257-7950

    DATE/TIME: 9/4/10

    LOCATION (specific): Harmony Parking Lot

    VIOLATION: Conditions of Release

    ACCUSED: Samarra Washington AGE: 31




    SUMMARY OF INCIDENT: Brattleboro Police were on foot patrol in the Harmony Parking lot and located Samarra Washington there also. Washington was violating her court ordered curfew so she was arrested and brought to the Brattleboro Police Dept. for processing. Washington was released on a citation to court for a later date and time.

    Charged on: 08/10
    ACCUSED: Samarra Washington AGE: 31
    On August 15, 2010, at approximately 0756 Hrs. the Brattleboro Police arrested Samarra Washington, 31, of Brattleboro and charged her with eight counts of Criminal Contempt.
    Charged on: 5/24/10
    ACCUSED: Samarra Washington AGE: 31
    SUMMARY OF INCIDENT: On May 24, 2010 Brattleboro police arrested Samarra Washington at her residence for violating her conditions of release. Washington has a 24-hour court ordered curfew and she was found walking on Elliot Street Monday night. Washington was released on a citation to appear in court on a later date and time.

    Charged on: 01/07/2010
    ACCUSED: Samarra L. Washington AGE: 31
    SUMMARY OF INCIDENT: Police were contacted to investigate possible check forgery. Further investigation revealed that Washington was in possession of stolen checks, and had attempted to use these stolen checks. Washington was currently being held on an unrelated arrest warrant, was and cited to appear in Windham District Court on 01/14/2010 to answer to this charge.

    — Samarra Washington, 32, of Brattleboro, pleaded guilty to sale of cocaine Tuesday and was sentenced to zero to 3 years in jail. That sentence is to be served concurrent to the 16 months to six years she is already serving for forgery.

    Washington’s forgery conviction last November was just one of more than 40 charges on her criminal record, including drunken driving, simple assault, violation of conditions of release, failure to appear in court and passing bad checks.

    Washington was investigated by the Southern Vermont Task Force in early 2010 and was arrested later that year on unrelated charges.

    • The point?

      And we need to know her arrest record/criminal history for what reason?
      It’s unfortunate that this women’s life obviously took some bad turns. It’s also unfortunate that she died at such a young age. None of the above information should be considered “news” nor is it anyone’s business.
      She died and the circumstances were such that apparently no one else was in danger.Can we just defining people’s personal lives as news? It isn’t.

      • Hear, Hear KAlden

        Did we really need to see this !?
        Was defaming her unfortunate life that necessary to you that you would need to print this, in detail, and then ask if this is too much information !?
        Is someone who cared about her reading your “too much information” now?

      • Thank you KAlden

        I think the trend to take apart someone’s life because they died is shameful. Yes, Robyn, that’s far too much.

      • sorry

        sorry, if I could go back and edit I would.

    • Uncomfortable facts

      The news story which Robyn Flatley began with, was published in the Rutland Herald.

      In addition, she quoted from a number of background items from the public record. Her entire post had not one word of opinion or personal comment: It was entirely citation of public sources, none of which she created.

      So the question is: Was this relevant?

      The news story and public records citations indicate that a 34 year old woman died suddenly with no explanation of the cause, in a context of a continuing history of criminal charges including involvement with cocaine. That may not be of interest to everyone, but for anyone who does care to know, the circumstances of her death certainly do make this a legitimate matter of concern.

      I find it unfortunate that posting information which some ibrattleboro participants find disturbing is virtually an act of courage because of the public chastisement which is almost certain to follow.

      It appears to me that those chastising Robyn Flatley are violating ibrattleboro policy, and that the moderators of this site should stop allowing those types of attacks. The iBrattleboro policy clearly requires that you report inappropriate comments, but not try to police them yourselves.

      Here is what the policy says:


      “”Please Leave Site Policing To The Moderators

      “It’s not necessary for site users to police each other’s comments by adding comments about other’s use of the site. If you would like to report a possible violation of site policy, please email us at info@ibrattleboro.com and refer us to the offending url/comment. We’ll take care of it so you don’t have to.”

      I am going to report those comments chastising Robyn Flatley’s comment as inappropriate, and then I am going to report my own comment as inappropriate. That should put the ball clearly in the moderator’s court, where they can then decide at last to actually police the policy, or else they should stop complaining about the free-for-alls which occur here, in part because we ibrattleboro participants too often quarrel with comments that we find offensive, instead of reporting them.

      • thank you

        Thank you. I was uncertain about posting all the info but I was also amazed how much there was. I’m sorry if my post caused anyone stress.

      • RESPECT

        I’m quite surprised that there is no respect for a young woman’s family reflected in your summation, SKB. You seem to think that mining info on people who have died is just fine. I’m very surprised.

        And I believe that you can edit your comments, Robyn. It’s one of the new features, is it not?

        Go right ahead and report me for insubordination to you.

        • respect indeed

          First, the decision was made by the moderator already, the comments were not only posted, but he encouraged someone to write about the woman.

          I am with Annikee, KAlden and Vidda on this issue. I am surprised that S K-B feels “anyone who cares to know” is a reason enough to make this a “legitimate matter of concern.” The family and friends have the right to grieve and respect the dead in private and that is more important than the right of a neighborhood group or “anyone” who has a interest in what happen.

          As for Robin’s post being “an act of courage” well move over Rosa Parks.

        • Respect

          My personal feelings aside, I do not think that Robyn Flatley deserved to be attacked for acting as a truthful, citizen journalist.

          An untimely death is painful, especially for the person’s family. I personally have lived in a household where most of the adults were involved with heroin, and were in and out of prison.

          For several years, on a daily basis I associated with individuals who had spent time for murder, burglary, and other crimes. I witnessed violence and was a victim of violence. I saw how children were harmed.

          The attrition rate was appalling. Everyone seemed to have siblings who had died violently or in other ways associated with addiction. Later, after leaving, when I inquired about young people I had known, I would invariably hear about another death and another death.

          People who are regarded as hardened criminals shared with me their sensitivities as well as their brutal feelings. In my experience, most people who get snared by addiction and crime are lost souls whose innermost yearnings are not evil, but rather are vulnerable and clueless about how to protect themselves.

          I saw adults hurt, I saw children hurt, I saw immensely talented individuals unable to flower into the wonderful human beings whom they might have become in a more wholesome environment. I found myself powerless to change any of this.

          A number of times I have seen someone who was trying as hard as they could to stay away from drugs, plunged right back into hell after being humiliated by an indifferent “respectable” person and, finding no support and not knowing how to defend themselves, returned to the “relief,” of heroin, and self-destruction.

          I do not view anyone in a one-dimensional way. I do not see being honest about problems as a lack of respect for human beings, neither do I see air-brushing aside the truth as being a moral imperative. If we are going to have a productive discussion, then we must have a real discussion.

          One more thing: I think it must have been clear that I did not report you for “insubordination” to me. How silly… you can insubordinate me any time you like, it’s fine. I reported you for trying to police another participant’s comments, which violates the site policy that you should report inappropriate comments to the moderators, and not try to police them yourself.

          And since I had admonished you, Vidda, and KAlden for violating site policy, thereby also violating the same policy that you violated: In fairness I also reported myself.

      • Unless you have access to a

        Unless you have access to a different ibrattleboro than I do I think it is pretty common for people to disagree with what others have posted. My response to the post with this woman’s entire criminal past was a question as to why anyone would think this information was necessary to post or deem it news worthy.I didn’t blame her for using the site incorrectly- I questioned what possible reason there would be to post criminal activity going back several years when clearly the woman’s death was not putting the public at risk.
        I certainly don’t see that this thread is a “free for all”. Some information is necessary for the public to know – I don’t think the very sad and tragic past circumstances in the deceased life qualifies as something that will allow us all to sleep better tonight for knowing.
        So, please, by all means report my comments to the moderators. I am clearly not alone in thinking that posting personal history is anything other than pure voyeurism.

      • The SK way ...ward

        I’m with Annikee and KAlden on this. Report away, son. Report away.

        I don’t know Robyn but I’m sure she can take of herself without an indignant “big” brother, unlike Sammie who is now voiceless.

  • RIP Sammie

    I’m so sorry to those who knew and really loved Sammie for the inconsiderate and nosey busybody tone of this thread.

    And to Sammie, you won’t be forgotten. And I’ll remember you with love and a smile. Who could ever forget your eyes?

  • Incredibly sad and frustrating!!

    I honestly try to stay out of most discussions but sometimes it reaches a level that burns my eyes and makes me cry. Despite the thin skinned who take offense with opinion, I have one to offer.
    First of all, if word of people dying under “untimely” circumstances never reached me, I would have no way of knowing how lucky I am to have three sons still alive, all with children of their own. Maybe not perfect, but alive. I would not be able to say that nearly a third of the childhood friends who would stop after school with my kids to eat bagels, listen to music or shoot hoops in the driveway have died, and most of them involved in drugs, alcohol and corrections. Several years ago, she was one of a number of happy go lucky school kids who never intended any harm or wished any harm toward anyone else.
    Since the background of this woman has been posted for all to see, I think a bell or two should ring for the complete lack of support services for those who find themselves locked into the impossible grid of the correctional system. Many of you know how much that has burned into the core of my being. I am more than just saddened to hear that another human has been sacrificed to the failings of that system. The credit is always added to the ass end of the issue and used to beef up policing, court systems, building more prisons, and blame is always placed on the poor departed soul when information is added to show a background that involves drugs, crimes, and prison time. I guess we’re supposed to think they somehow deserved it, and politically, it’s the news that keeps resulting in enhanced sentencing, longer prison terms, bigger fines and everything that snowballs from there. All of this money spent to punish people needs to be spent where it would make a difference and its the only way we will ever see this insanity stop. Education, job training, decent housing, livable incomes, and most of all, forgiveness for those who make mistakes. In Vermont, when a background check is asked for, an entire history is given regardless if the person asking says they want only the past five or seven years. There is never any forgiveness. There is never an end to the punishment .. Never.

    I want to say to Samarra that I forgive her, except she isn’t able to hear me. If I had wealth, I would happily spend myself poor handing out opportunity. Money can’t buy happiness but it sure as hell can solve problems, and there is little doubt her life was chock full of them. My heart breaks to hear this news. Maybe more hearts need to break before something changes.
    Chances are, she wasn’t alone when she died. No. People will run, scatter and hide so as not to be blamed when death comes, if drugs were involved especially. But for all practical purposes she has no doubt been alone for most of her life.
    This is attention she may have once dreamed of.. That people would care about her and her circumstances, but the only time it seems we would be reminded of what must have been pure misery for her is when the newspaper tells us her life has ended. There’s something really screwed up then, but it wasn’t Samarra.

    • The Bigger Picture

      Hey Babalu, thank you for posting this. It is a beautiful tribute to a soul caught up in the barbed wire of our society. I didn’t know Samarra, at least not by name, and I, unlike others here, was grateful for Robyn’s forwarding of some of the details. At the same time I knew that there was so much more to the picture of this woman’s life, and that these details should come out, too, and she should be honored for the positive things that she tried to do. You gave us a glimpse of that side of her here, and I hope that others follow similarly.

      And then there’s the bigger bigger picture — how do we foster a culture where people’s gifts are uncovered and celebrated? Where they are encouraged to contribute, mentored into the skills that they need to thrive, and supported when they stumble? A line from a Rumi poem is coming to mind:

      If you’ve not been fed, be bread.

      • The Smaller Picture

        This article is about someone who died. Above it’s said, “People die.” What Rabiah did what to set the local police activity curiosity-machine in motion. iBrattleboro is the vehicle.
        So far, however, I believe I’m the only who mentioned the family privacy primary issue. The second level is Sammie’s friends. The third level is the open-ended public curiosity. As of today, no one from her family has entered this thread (I think) and only one person identified herself as a friend.

        The rest of us are just freebooting, who are pirating a deceased woman’s death without benefit of a close relationship with her. Maybe the issue of fostering “a culture where people’s gifts are uncovered and celebrated” is meritorious. How realistic is it, even in a closed community like Brattleboro, to do that for all people who die an “unsuspicious” death? In the past, that kind of thing would show in the obituaries. If you were “celebrated” during your life, maybe you would merit news coverage, sometimes front-page coverage.

        But maybe, it might be more useful for family and friends of Sammie to decide whether or not they even want an after-the-fact public scrutiny, celebrated or not. It certainly is too late now, thanks to this exposure and it had the unfortunate effect of being negative, without real benefit of people who knew her. Most people commenting started out saying “I didn’t know Samarra, but…”

        Sometimes, taking a fast from our nosy-neighbor-curiosity-machine is better than pretending you need to be the bread.

    • I love what you said

      yes, you are right. you have posted an important and moving message. thank you.

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