Police handled scary situation professionally

BRATTLEBORO — Recently, as I was standing at my window on Western Avenue, a white SUV-like vehicle was stopped by the police. I saw three town police officers side by side and a sheriff's vehicle behind them. All the police had gotten out of their cars. They positioned themselves and had guns drawn.

The officer in the town police car on the far left heading toward the Interstate had a weapon that looked like a submachine gun. He was standing by the left front fender of his car.

The officer in the middle cruiser was on his audio system talking to the stopped vehicle in front of them. The officer in the town police car on the far right was on a yard at the far right pointing his handgun at the white vehicle also.

It was frightening as I watched the event unfold.

Very cautiously, the officer in the middle police car began talking through the cruiser's system, issuing instructions to the white vehicle that they had stopped.

One person got out of the white car, walked backwards, and dropped to kneeling, keeping hands visible. An officer went up and put on the handcuffs, gracefully and firmly walking the person to a cruiser.

Next, the police officer called for another person to get out, issuing the same instructions. Again, the police talked, then another person got out and was handcuffed.

As I kept watching, I thought that this could not be happening here in such a small town.

There was a pickup truck coming very slowly down Western Avenue headed toward town. It slowly passed the officer holding the submachine gun. The officer didn't flinch; he held to the task at hand. Here were police with their guns pulled, and some rubberneck wanted to go by slowly, within a foot or two of the officer on the left during this very dangerous event. Only in Vermont!

The police ordered the rest of the passengers out of the car one by one. Two of them were handcuffed and sat on the sidewalk. Then they were questioned individually.

It was such a surreal event. I kept wondering what did these people do, how dangerous for everyone involved this must have been, to have the officers have to draw their guns.

I am proud to say the police department acted with the most professionalism I'd ever seen here, or anywhere. And I am glad nobody got hurt.

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