BRATTLEBORO >> A local man authorities were looking for after a hate-motivated crime committed on July 31 was apprehended and arraigned on Wednesday.
Patrick W. Poillon, 21, of Brattleboro, pleaded not guilty to assault and robbery charges stemming from an incident on Sunday. His bail was set at $10,000.
A male victim told the Brattleboro Police Department he was purchasing two alcoholic beverages in a store on Elliot Street when a man fitting the description of Poillon, began punching and kicking him. Police said Poillon's girlfriend, Mariam Belarj, 20, of Medford, N.Y., who was arraigned for assault charges on Monday, hit the victim in the head two or three times with a bottle of beer. Belarj also allegedly stole the beverages from the victim.
A black female victim who drove up to the scene "stopped her car because of the subjects blocking the roadway," police said. Poillon called her a racial slur after she exited her car and started picking up glass from the road using a handkerchief.
"I'll (expletive) fight you, I'll (expletive) kill you!" Poillon said, according to an affidavit, before assaulting the female victim.
Police searched the area after Poillon fled the scene. He allegedly ran into a wooded area between Elliot and Frost streets.
"Officers set up a perimeter and began a canine track," police said. "Shortly thereafter, dispatch said that the female (Belarj) had been located on Canal Street, having just asked someone something to the effect of 'Are the police gone?'"
An officer from the Dover Police Department contacted Brattleboro police on Monday, identifying Poillon as a person who had bitten him in a previous incident.
The Brattleboro Police Department received information regarding Poillon's whereabouts Wednesday at about midnight. Poillon was arrested at an Elliot Street residence without incident after police found him hiding in a bedroom closet with Belarj, according to the affidavit.
Poillon entered not-guilty pleas to four counts in Windham County Superior Court Criminal Division on Wednesday. Assault and robbery, simple assault and aggravated disorderly conduct charges stemmed from the incident on Elliot Street. Another charge had to do with retail theft, which Poillon had not yet been arraigned on. He is facing up to 20 years in prison.
Contact Chris Mays at firstname.lastname@example.org or 802-254-2311, ext. 273.