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Ex-trooper pleads guilty to assaulting girlfriend

  • Nicholas Cianci, 25 VERMONT STATE POLICE

Valley News Staff Writer
Published: 7/14/2021 5:00:22 PM
Modified: 7/14/2021 5:00:25 PM

CHELSEA — A former Vermont State Police trooper will avoid jail time after pleading guilty to assaulting a woman he was dating last year. 

Nicholas Cianci, 25, of Bradford, Vt., pleaded guilty to one misdemeanor count of simple assault during a hearing in Orange Superior Court Wednesday, his attorney David Sleigh said in a phone interview following the hearing. The plea agreement comes with an 18-month deferred jail sentence and conditions that include Cianci not have any contact with the victim, his former girlfriend. If he completes the 18-month probation time, his record will be expunged of the assault charge, Sleigh said. 

The charge is a change from the earlier citation of misdemeanor domestic violence, which police brought against Cianci in March following a three-month investigation. 

According to a news release from Vermont State Police, the woman obtained a temporary relief from abuse order against Cianci and spoke with police in December. Police believe Cianci threatened and physically assaulted her multiple times during their relationship last year, according to the release. Cianci worked out of the St. Johnsbury barracks, so the investigating officer in his case was a detective from the Westminster barracks to avoid a conflict of interest, the release said. 

Cianci, who graduated from the Vermont Police Academy in 2018, had been a trooper with the department for three years and worked as a detective trooper in the Bureau of Criminal Investigations prior to being cited. Vermont State Police placed Cianci on paid relief from duty on Dec. 7 and changed it to unpaid relief from duty in March, the release said. Cianci resigned from his position after he was cited, Sleigh said. 

Sleigh said Wednesday’s conviction will not bar Cianci from seeking a job as a police officer or trooper in the future. 

Anna Merriman can be reached at

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