ST. ALBANS — An alleged armed robbery in Enosburg led to a high speed chase that ended with the accused driving into St. Albans Bay.
Stephen Salyer, 38, of Enosburgh, is facing multiple charges.
The incident began at 7:15 p.m. on Saturday when the Franklin County Sheriff’s Office (FCSO) received a panic alarm from the Maplefields in Enosburgh. Store staff reported the store had been robbed by a man with a box cutter who appeared to be wearing a tracking device on his ankle.
Deputies shared a photo taken from surveillance footage with probation and parole officers, who identified the man as Salyer, FCSO reports.
A be on the lookout (BOL) notice was sent out for Salyer and his vehicle.
At approximately 10:30 p.m., FCSO received a GPS location from the bracelet and believed Saylyer was heading home. His vehicle was spotted by a deputy on Route 108 in Berkshire about 15 minutes later. The deputy reportedly attempted a motor vehicle stop, but Salyer fled.
The resulting pursuit went from Berkshire through Franklin, Sheldon, Swanton and into St. Albans, where the St. Albans Police Dept. (SAPD) deployed spikes in the vicinity of Warners Snack Bar on Route 7.
The spikes deflated all four of Salyer’s tires, FCSO reports, but he continued to drive on Main Street, down Lake Street to St. Albans Bay where he drove off of the dock and into the water.
Two SAPD officers, Sgt. Joe Thomas and Mike Malinowski, dove in after Salyer, who had managed to free himself from the vehicle.
FCSO reports he swam to a nearby dock where his hiding place was discovered and he was arrested.
Salyer was taken to Northwestern Medical Center for injuries sustained in the accident. He was transferred to the University of Vermont Medical Center.
At the time of the incident, Salyer had conditions of release stemming from an armed robbery on April 12. In that incident, Salyer is accused of participating in the robbery of a couple who had stopped to assist an apparently disabled vehicle and were then robbed at gunpoint.
In June of 2017, he was charged with distributing heroin in Massachusetts.
He is now facing charges of assault and robbery, attempting to elude a police officer, grossly negligent operation, excessive speed, leaving the scene of an accident, and violation of conditions of release.
Bail for Salyer has been set at $25,000.
In addition to FCSO and SAPD, Vermont State Police, Dept. of Corrections, U.S. Border Patrol, and the St. Albans Town Fire Dept. assisted with this incident.
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