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Union Decries Charges Against Vermont Officer

Montpelier (AP) — A top official with the union representing a Winooski police officer indicted in the shooting of a mentally ill man says he fears the indictment will have a chilling effect on other police officers.

Jeffrey Wimette, business manager for Local 300 of the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers called Wednesday, the day the indictment against Cpl. Jason Nokes was handed up, “a sad day for law enforcement officers in Vermont.”

Nokes was indicted on charges of aggravated assault, reckless endangerment and giving false information to a police officer in the April 25 shooting of 35-year-old Isaac Sage.

Nokes has been on paid leave for most of the time since the shooting.

Police and prosecutors have said Sage sucker-punched Nokes, who received a broken nose and a concussion.

A second officer, who responded as back-up, received minor injuries and tried to stun Sage with a Taser twice with no effect. Nokes’ handgun discharged as the struggle continued to handcuff the combative man.

“It is a sad day for law enforcement officers in Vermont when they see how a system can be so politically driven and tainted, that they no longer feel threatened by the evil in society, but the evil within the justice system,” Wimette said in an e-mail.