Chester man held on $100,000 bail as new charges brought

In the June 2017 Telegraph photo, Ryan Stocker pleads not guilty to two in Windsor Superior Court.

By Cynthia Prairie
©2017 Telegraph Publishing LLC

An 18-year-old Chester man, charged earlier this year on two counts sexual assault, was arrested today by Ludlow Police and charged with kidnapping, attempted aggravated sexual assault and lewd and lascivious conduct with a child  in connection with a July 2015 incident in Ludlow.

According to Ludlow Police, this is a separate incident and different victim from the earlier ones.

Police said Ryan Stocker was arrested at 3:28 this afternoon at his Chester home without incident. He is being held at Southern State Correctional Facility on $100,000 bail and will be arraigned on Monday.

With these new charges, Stocker now faces a total of five counts. Stocker was earlier charged with two counts of sexual assault against two victims in two separate incidents. The new kidnapping charge carries a possible life sentence.

According to a press release from the Ludlow Police, in July 2015, the then 16-year-old Stocker lured a 14-year-old girl to an area on High Street in Ludlow, “where he committed a lewd act and attempted to sexually assault the victim.” Police say he refused to allow the victim to leave the area and continued to attempt to assault her. At some point, the victim, police say, was able to flee to a friend’s home nearby.

In June, Stocker was arrested  following a month-long investigation by Chester and Ludlow Police who charged him with two counts of sexual assault in two incidents that occurred in October 2015 in Ludlow and then in May 2017 in Chester with two separate victims. Stocker pleaded not guilty to both charges on June 19, 2017.

Stocker was released on a number of conditions including a 24-hour, seven day a week curfew and no contact with the victims. Windsor Superior Court Judge Theresa DiMauro noted that Stocker had no previous criminal history and said, given his age, she was reluctant to hold him without bail.

At the time DiMauro said, “With other charges coming that might change.”

On July 19, Stocker and his attorney Melvin Fink asked the court to allow Stocker to leave his home to work with his father in the construction business. DiMauro ruled that Stocker could work with his father but must be supervised at all times.

The cases came to light when the mother of the Chester victim approached the Green Mountain School Board on Thursday June 8 and asked what the high school was doing to educate students about sexual assault and protect them from it. Neither incident occurred in the school nor did they occur at school-sponsored events.

Ludlow police say multiple agencies continue to be involved.

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About the Author: Cynthia Prairie has been a newspaper editor more than 40 years. Cynthia has worked at such publications as the Raleigh Times, the Baltimore News American, the Buffalo Courier Express, the Chicago Sun-Times and the Patuxent Publishing chain of community newspapers in Maryland, and has won numerous state awards for her reporting. As an editor, she has overseen her staffs to win many awards for indepth coverage. She and her family moved to Chester, Vermont in 2004.

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