"Missing" Springfield man resurfaces in courtroom and is released on conditions
WHITE RIVER JUNCTION - A Springfield man who was briefly the focus of a missing persons inquiry by police late last week appeared in court on Monday and then was subsequently released on pre-trial conditions.
Brandon Adams-Smith, 20, has been keeping a low profile in recent weeks while he lives at the home of a drug counselor and attends frequent substance abuse meetings in the Springfield area, his court-appointed public defender told a judge this week.
Windsor County Deputy State’s Attorney Ward Goodenough told the same court that police got involved in looking for Adams-Smith because of a warrant that had been outstanding for Adams-Smith’s arrest after he failed to appear for arraignment in connection with the burglary of a jewelry store in Chester and because of rumors that had been circulating.
“There were a number different theories as to where he had gone spread throughout the community, some of them involving a possible overdose he was believed to have suffered,” Goodenough explained to Judge Timothy Tomasi.
“The defendant had cut off communication with a significant chunk of his family and deleted his Facebook account in an effort to avoid detection,” Goodenough continued. “Then on Saturday he did call the Springfield Police Department and told them he was alive and out of New England and didn’t want to have anything to do with this area. The Springfield Police Department didn’t believe much of that and they were able to locate him in Springfield and he was arrested.”
Adams-Smith’s attorney, Robert Lees, and a family friend both described Adams-Smith as a young man who was struggling to get his life together for the sake of his five-month-old daughter who was in the courtroom with Adams-Smith’s fiancé and several of his friends and family members on Monday.
Lees pointed out that, although Adams-Smith had just pleaded innocent to a felony count of burglary and an accompanying misdemeanor charge of unlawful mischief in connection with the April 12th break-in at Mountain Man Jewelers in Chester, the state was not seeking jail time in connection with that case “due to his honesty with the police.”
Chester officers wrote in an affidavit filed with the court that they quickly located Adams-Smith that night and he allegedly confessed within minutes to having smashed the store’s front window with a hammer and grabbing a small display case filled with stud earrings “because he needed something to sell so he could buy heroin.”
Judge Tomasi said from the bench that he was concerned about Adams-Smith’s alleged behavior but at the same time noted he was “willing to take a chance” because of the young man’s apparent efforts to engage in drug counseling and treatment. Adams-Smith was released on an unsecured appearance bond and a series of pre-trial conditions that include nighttime curfews and on-going participation in substance abuse group meetings.
“I try to do three days a week and at least six meetings a week,” Adams-Smith assured the judge before he was allowed to leave the courtroom carrying his young daughter out the door.
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