Upper Valley Dispatch

Police: Windsor Woman Was Going to Court for Restraining Order When She Was Killed (Update)

White River Junction — The 23-year-old Windsor woman who police say was slain by her estranged boyfriend was planning on getting a restraining order from court the day she was killed, according to court documents. A Vermont State Police affidavit unsealed today says family members of Molly Helland told police after she was shot and killed that Jason Kendall had held a gun to her head three days earlier while she tried to move out of his apartment. Helland’s father said she was on her

Trailing Toward Summer

Nearly every early June for the last nine years, I’ve covered the Vermont Division III high school track and field state championship meet at Chester’s Green Mountain Union High School. It’s an enjoyable assignment, and I’ve come to consider it a sort of right of passage into the summer season. With 36 events — 18 each for the boys and girls teams — and many with multiple heats, it’s a long day. Inevitably, there comes a time when a reporter simply needs to step away

Police ID Windsor Shooting Victim, Continue Search for Shooter (Updated 4:20 p.m.)

UPDATE AT 4:20 P.M.: Vermont State Police have identified Molly Helland, 22, of Windsor as the victim of this morning's shooting, saying she was discovered on the ground outside her parents' house in downtown Windsor.  Police are continuing to search for Jason Kendall, according to a news release issued by state police. Police say Helland, who had a child with Kendall, recently ended a relationship with him and moved in with her parents. Kendall's 1996 Honda Accord was seen leaving the crime scene shortly after the

‘Valley News’ Banquet to Honor Upper Valley Athletes

The Valley News will recognize the Upper Valley’s outstanding school athletes from the 2014-15 school year in a special section to be published June 16 and at a banquet scheduled for June 24. The 34 athletes — a male and female competitor from each of the 17 schools regularly covered in the Valley News — were chosen by the newspaper’s sports editor and reporters based on their on-field achievements. The winners will be announced through the special section, which will feature portrait photographs of each

Judge Excludes ‘Confession’ Letter in Bethel Shooting Case

White River Junction — A Superior Court judge has ruled to not allow into evidence a letter that defense attorneys had said could exonerate Emily Perkins, the South Royalton woman accused in a 2011 Bethel shooting. The handwritten letter, purported to have been written by Perkins’ husband Michael before he died of cancer, took responsibility for the shooting that injured a teenage woman and left a Bethel man dead. In a 13-page decision filed in Windsor Superior Court on Tuesday, Judge Karen Carroll said that

'Valley News' Seeks Freelance Writers

The Valley News occasionally needs freelance writers to cover news and feature stories. If you have reporting experience — or reporting skills, but are in need of experience — and would like to be included on our roster of available writers, please send a resume to: Martin Frank, Editor, Valley News, PO Box 877, White River Junction, Vt. 05001.

Upper Valley’s Core City Is ‘Best Small Town in America’

Lebanon may not be America’s Best Town, but it is the Best Small Town in America. Confused yet? All it means is that, just weeks after being burned in one online competition to identify nice communities, Lebanon has triumphed in another. In the first, hosted by Outside Magazine, Lebanon was ousted by Lake Placid in the first round of a 64-town bracketed competition. (Chattanooga, Tenn., and Port Angeles, Wash., are currently battling it out for bragging rights and a feature spread in the magazine.) But

Flatlander Grateful for a Kind Community

In a letter to the editor published on Wednesday, Paul Sunde, of Wilder, thanked the Norwich Police Department and a good Samaritan for returning his wallet “and everything it contained, truly everything.” This letter struck me as a simple yet accurate depiction of the kindness of the Upper Valley community. Whether it’s someone holding a door open at the store, a clerk spending extra time with a customer, a fellow motorist waving to a passerby or someone returning a lost wallet, this community is full

Meeting Tonight on Gas Project Proposed for Route 120 in Lebanon

West Lebanon — Valley Green Natural Gas, the entity planning to construct a natural gas facility serving the Route 120 corridor, is set to hold a public information session tonight at the Kilton Public Library in West Lebanon. Developer Jay Campion, the president of Valley Green Natural Gas, has previously appeared before Lebanon’s Planning and Zoning boards and Hanover’s Selectboard to describe the project, which is proposed to provide natural gas to area businesses and municipal groups, including Dartmouth College, Dartmouth-Hitchcock Medical Center, Hypertherm and

‘Strong to Severe’ Thunderstorms, Possible Hail Predicted for Upper Valley This Afternoon

The National Weather Service has issued an alert for likely “strong to severe thunderstorms” this afternoon across Vermont and northern New York, including Orange and Windsor counties. “Some thunderstorms may produce locally heavy rainfall, strong gusty winds and small hail, as well as frequent lightning,” the alert stated. A similar but less severe alert was also issued for Grafton and Sullivan counties on the other side of the Connecticut River, warning that “a few (thunderstorms) may be severe with damaging winds and heavy rainfall the