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December 26, 2019

Shaftsbury Barracks / Aggravated Cruelty to Animals - False Info to Police - Prohibited Possession of a Firearm x 20

VSP News Release-Incident








CASE#: 19B304299

RANK/TROOPER FULL NAME: Trooper Ben Irwin                          

STATION: Shaftsbury                    

CONTACT#: 802-442-5421


DATE/TIME: December 26, 2019 - 0942 hours

INCIDENT LOCATION: Wilcox Hollow Rd, Sandgate VT

VIOLATION: Aggravated Cruelty to Animals, False Information to Law Enforcement,

and Prohibited Possession of a Firearm (20 Counts)


ACCUSED: Joyce Cornell (45) and Scott Cornell (50)                             




SUMMARY OF INCIDENT: On the morning of December 26, 2019, Troopers from the

Vermont State Police - Shaftsbury Barracks were dispatched to a residence on

Wilcox Hollow Rd in Sandgate. Upon arrival, Troopers discovered a large breed

dog in the front yard that had suffered what appeared to be two (2) gunshot

wounds. The dog was still alive and suffering at the time of arrival. Troopers

attempted to save the dog, but were unsuccessful. During the investigation,

Joyce and Scott Cornell refused to come to the door and speak with police. When

Joyce finally came outside it was determined that Joyce had fired two (2) shots

from a revolver at the dog, while Joyce was inside and the dog was chained up,

outside in the front yard. Joyce advised numerous times that her husband, Scott

was not inside the residence.


Scott was located inside the residence with numerous loaded firearms. Scott is a

felon (Brady Disqualified) and is not allowed to possess firearms. A search

warrant for the residence was granted. Twenty (20) illegally owned firearms were

located and seized as part of the warrant.


Joyce was ordered to be held on $1000 Surety Bond for Aggravated Cruelty to

Animals and False Information to Law Enforcement. Scott was ordered to be held

on $5000 Surety Bond for Prohibited Possession of a firearm (20 counts).




COURT DATE/TIME: December 27, 2019 - 1230 hours           

COURT: Bennington Superior Court - Criminal Division

LODGED - LOCATION: Marble Valley Correctional Facility  

BAIL: Listed Above

MUG SHOT: Included





*Please note:  court date and time are subject to change at the discretion of

the court. Please call the criminal court clerk to confirm arraignment time.


Trooper Benjamin Irwin

Vermont State Police

96 Airport Rd

Shaftsbury VT, 05262