BRATTLEBORO -- A local man has been charged with misdemeanor stalking after he allegedly harassed a Guilford man for more than two years.
Donald G. West, 42, of Guilford, pleaded not guilty to the charge during his arraignment in Windham County Superior Court Criminal Division on Tuesday and was released on conditions, which included that he not have any contact with the victim.
According to the affidavit, West has been throwing empty beer bottles at the victim’s home, driving by and honking the horn of his vehicle at all hours of the day and made numerous threatening gestures at the man with his hand.
On April 27, the victim told the State Police that West was tailgating him along Guilford Center Road after passing him earlier, heading in the opposite direction.
"(The victim) reported that when West passed his vehicle, West made a gesture with his hand (to) form a gun and then made a firing motion at (the victim) as he passed," Vermont State Police Senior Trooper Travis Valcourt wrote in the affidavit.
Fearful for his life, the victim had installed a video camera in his vehicle and was able to record about 30 seconds of the incident.
The victim also told police that West had recently begun making "a slashing motion across his throat" as well as the gun gesture with his hand.
One of the most recent alleged incidents occurred on June 16, when the victim was driving in the roundabout along Route
He told police that he saw West’s vehicle also enter the roundabout from Route 9 in New Hampshire and that West passed him and cut him off in the traffic circle as he attempted to get on the interstate.
The victim stated he kept a great distance between his vehicle and West’s but as they approached St. John Drive, West had positioned his vehicle across Sweet Pond Road in the victim’s direct path.
To avoid West’s vehicle, the man stated he had to "stomp" on his brakes and narrowly missed crashing into the parked truck.
"West remained blocking the roadway for a few moments while glaring at (the victim)," Trooper Valcourt wrote. "West then slowly began to move past (the victim) while pointing his arm and middle finger at him."
For the victim, the incident caused him "profound anxiety and fear," the affidavit states. "(The victim) stated that he was truly afraid for his life."
If West is convicted, he facing up to two years behind bars and a fine of up to $5,000.
Josh Stilts can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org, or 802-254-2311 ext. 273.