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On 10/10/2021 at approximately 6:42 pm, Colchester Police received a report of a male operating a green Jeep Cherokee erratically on Vermont Route 15 in Essex approaching Colchester.
At the intersection of Vermont Route 15 and Barnes Avenue in Colchester, the male in the Jeep reportedly pulled along-side another vehicle, exited the vehicle and demanded a debit card from the driver.
The male from the Jeep then reportedly pointed a crossbow at the complainant, a 22 year old male from Essex and then fled when the victim pulled away.
While officers were investigating the original complaint, a report of a robbery had just occurred at the Cumberland Farms store approximately one half mile away on Vermont Route 15 involving a male fleeing in a SUV.
Winooski Police reported that a green Jeep was just involved in a crash Vermont Route 15 in Winooski at approximately 6:50 pm and reportedly fled the scene south on Interstate 89 at Exit 15.
At approximately 7:14 pm Colchester Police received a report of a green Jeep driving erratically with one tire missing on Vermont Route 7 in an area known as Sunny Hollow. Witnesses followed the vehicle onto Severance Road then onto Forman Drive.
The witnesses attempted to keep the Jeep from driving away but the operator pointed crossbow at them. A CPD officer arrived at the scene and pointed his duty weapon at the suspect and ordered him to drop the crossbow. The suspect dropped the crossbow then re-entered the Jeep.
The Jeep struck a mailbox then turned toward and struck the Colchester Police vehicle just after the officer re-entered the vehicle. The officer attempted to stop the Jeep but it fled out of Forman Drive and veered toward a second CPD vehicle striking it.
The two CPD vehicles sustained minor to moderate damage but were both able to be driven.
CPD continued to pursue the Jeep east on Severance Road onto Kellogg Road in Essex where it turned onto Morse Drive. Essex Police arrived to assist and the Jeep drove directly at the Essex Police vehicle striking the left side of the cruiser causing extensive damage. Two Essex Police officers were seen at UVM Medical Center for minor injuries.
The male, 38 year old Ben J. Webb of Middlebury was taken into custody on Morse Drive. He was transported to UVM Medical Center for treatment.
The vehicle was reportedly taken without permission from Webb’s brother in Middlebury. Webb faces multiple aggravated assault charges as well as two charges of robbery. Further charges are likely as the investigation continues in cooperation with the Essex and Winooski Police Departments.
Police from Shelburne, Williston, and Middlebury are also assisting with the investigation. Anyone with information on this case is asked to call Colchester Police at 264-5555.