VT. Lawmakers Propose 'Cold Case Unit' for VSP

Lawmakers in Montpelier are looking to dedicate an entire State Police unit to solving cold cases.

There are 55 murders unsolved in Vermont, they date back to the 50's. In addition to the murders there are also 35 missing person’s cases dating back to the 40's.

"I do life as anybody else, I just have a little room that I go into and that is Brianna's room and I deal with it as I can from time to time but it’s all still with me,” said Bruce Maitland.

Maitland's 17 year-old daughter, Brianna vanished more than 10 years ago.

"When you talk to these families you realize how tough this is and in his case they wake up every morning they don't know what happened to her, we haven't found her and that is a tough thing and they live with it every day,” said Maj. Glenn Hall, Vermont State Police.

Its cases like this one that Rep. Patti Lewis, a republican from Washington wants to see solved. She is sponsoring a bill that would create a 'cold case unit' within the state police.

Hall said, "We do things very differently now, we have technology and things much more than we had 20 or 30 years ago so we are literally taking these old case files, going through line by line.”

The unit would consist of at least two 'part-time' investigators. These positions would be filled by former experienced detectives.

"These are detectives that bring a boatload of experience to the table and they are retired law enforcement usually but they have the experience and this is an opportunity to utilize that experience,” said Hall.

The Major Crime Unit was formed in 2015 but state police say current cases take priority-- leaving cold cases on the back burner.

"We may not be able to make an arrest on every one of these but if we are able to resolve the case and give the family some closure that's a positive thing in my mind,” said Hall.

Maitland says he's in constant communication with the police and is encouraged by the bill.

"As far as resolution I’m not even sure I know what that looks like but I do certainly want her to be found and I certainly want anyone brought to justice who's responsible,” said Maitland.


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