James Valente, Esq.

Hashim: a state trooper who de-escalates situations

I am the president of Costello, Valente & Gentry, P.C., a law firm in Brattleboro. Part of my practice is criminal defense, which means that I see a lot of material related to law-enforcement incidents in Windham County which isn't readily available to the public. That material includes video created by cruiser cameras when my clients interact with the Vermont State Police.

Particularly in Windham County, VSP represents us well and exhibits a high level of professionalism and respect, even though they deal with very difficult situations every day.

Each officer has a distinct way of addressing these problems. Some are friendly and conversational, others are stern, and others defy categorization. With experience, they seem to adopt a strategy that fits their personality and allows them to accomplish what they're trying to do.

From the first time I saw Nader Hashim's style, I liked it. A person he arrested was not being compliant and behaved in an aggressive way that could have easily escalated the encounter. But Nader made a careful effort to engage with them, and it became obvious that they were having a hard time dealing with their own issues, not trying to escape or start a fight.

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