Strange incident on I-89 in Royalton near the Sharon town line brings out state police and ambulances
Updated at the bottom of the story with descriptions of the individuals and a possible vehicle
ROYALTON - The sight of two men dragging a woman off the side of Interstate 89 down into the woods near the Commerce Park solar farm and industrial complex shortly after 3 p.m. Saturday prompted a large police response but authorities are still not certain what passersby were witnessing.
"This started with a call to state police about people running on the interstate," recalled Sgt. Hugh O'Donnell about an hour after the incident began, "The next call was about a female unresponsive in the woods but we have not been able to find anybody yet."
There were several witnesses to bits and pieces of what happened on I-89 and below the highway a short time later closer to the intersection of River Road and Commerce Park but troopers were still trying to "connect the dots" as the afternoon progressed.
Ambulance crews from South Royalton Rescue and White River Valley Ambulance stood by while troopers searched
O'Donnell said that, after speaking with some of the witnesses, the working guess by police was that what witnesses had seen was a drug overdose on the part of the woman and that at least one man who was with her appeared to have administered Narcan to her.
"The last known sighting is that they were running away from the EMTs after she had been revived," O'Donnell said, explaining, "We've got a canine coming just to make sure she is not up in the woods somewhere."
Police initially thought there might have been weapons involved in the incident and that prompted the Hartford Police Department to send a couple of their officers to back up state police during the initial minutes of the incident but Sgt. O'Donnell said those reports appeared to be the result of confusion.
"Nobody was stabbed, nobody was shot," O'Donnell said. "There weren't really any threats."
Police believe the trio may have left the area in a car or cars before police arrived.
"Realistically the Narcan thing is not a crime at this point but we just want to check on her welfare," O'Donnell said.
On Saturday evening the state police released descriptions of the individuals and a vehicle that is believed to be associated with them and they are asking anyone who might know who the subjects are to contact the Royalton Vermont State Police Barracks at (802) 234-9933.
The three individuals are described as a balding black male with a muscular build wearing a dark shirt and a white male in his mid-to-late 30s, also with a muscular build, who stands about 5-feet-9-inches tall with dirty blonde hair wearing a black shirt with "peace signs", new looking brown Carhartt jeans and cut up workbooks and a black female with a "round" face and short curly light brown hair. She is believed to be about 5-feet-3-inches tall and was wearing an all black short sleeve shirt and black pants with dark sneakers. She also had a white winter-style hat with a Nike symbol on it and was carrying a backpack.
The vehicle associated with the trio is believed to be an older model (2000-to-2005) Ford Explorer with a Vermont license plate. The SUV was described as "extremely dirty" and had dark tint on the rear windows and a "Cummings" sticker on the back.
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