EDITOR'S NOTE: Information is from Orleans Superior Court-Criminal Division records unless otherwise noted.

In recent court cases, Anne-Marie Dionne, aka Santaw, 34, of Newport pleaded not guilty Dec. 20 to a misdemeanor count of driving after suspension.

She is being held at Chittenden Regional Correctional Facility on another matter.

Newport City Police officer Royce Lancaster wrote in his affidavit that he saw Santaw driving on Nov. 16 on Second Street. Aware that her license was suspended, Lancaster spoke to her after she stopped on Prospect Street and asked why she was driving.

Dionne told Lancaster that she knew she wasn't supposed to be driving but that she had to bring her mother-in-law to the hospital. When Lancaster asked why an ambulance couldn't have done that job, Dionne said her mother-in-law had a mental health issue that prevented her from riding in an ambulance.

Lancaster's affidavit says that Dionne's license was currently suspended for 16 different reasons. Dionne has also been convicted of felony offenses, including false pretences or tokens and false personation, and misdemeanor offenses of retail theft and passing bad checks.

Anthony Higginson, 20, of Newport Center, pleaded not guilty to misdemeanor counts of leaving the scene of an accident and careless or negligent operation of a motor vehicle and was released.

Mary Lapan reported that a vehicle came out of nowhere on Main Street in Newport City Nov. 10 and crashed into her vehicle. She said the driver took off after being informed the police were on the way. The male, who claimed Lapan had hit his vehicle, said he'd go to the police station himself, according to an affidavit from Royce Lancaster.

Higginson was located based on the pieces of his vehicle he'd left behind, Lancaster wrote.

Higginson claimed that he'd been making a turn when Lapan's van hit his vehicle. He said he'd parked, used an ATM, left, went home, and fixed the vehicle using spare parts. Higginson said he'd never spoken to Lapan and "figured that he was all set."

While Lancaster was processing Higginson, he asked what kind of punishment he'd get, and Lancaster said it would probably be community service. Higginson told Lancaster that "he better not get that much or the judge was going to be picking himself off the floor."

Lancaster advised against going into court with that kind of attitude.

If Higginson were to plead guilty, the state has offered a suspended sentence of six to 12 months with a $400 fine, payment of restitution, and a driver safety course.

Ethan Capron, 27, of Newport, pleaded guilty Dec. 20 to misdemeanor counts of retail theft and two counts of disorderly conduct by obstruction, amended from two counts of driving after suspension.

Capron was sentenced to serve two to four days, which he can serve on weekends. He may also be required to pay restitution.

Senior Trooper Shawn Loan wrote that on Dec. 18, 2010, he stopped Capron for a defective brake light after seeing him driving on Main Street and Glen Road. He found that Capron's license was criminally suspended.

Capron was again stopped on June 12 after driving on Main Street by Newport City Police officer Richard Wells. His license was still criminally suspended.

Newport officer Aaron Lefebvre's affidavit says a store clerk at Azur's Mini Mart in Newport reported that Capron stole a bottle of Captain Morgan on Aug. 7.

Dustin Ferrin, 22, of Newport, pleaded guilty Dec. 20 to taking deer using bait and was fined $200.

According to Warden Bradley Mann's affidavit, Ferrin was hunting on Oct. 1 from a stand where he'd placed bait during the previous year's whitetail season in Holland.

The following people pleaded not guilty to misdemeanor charges and were released:

Hunter Sykes, 20, of Holland, to drunken driving on Dec. 5 in Newport;

Robert Sparks, 55, of Cambridge, to driving after suspension on Nov. 10 in Newport;

Tara Martinez, 42, of Newport, to drunken driving on Dec. 2 in Barton;

Samuel Longmoore, 22, of Newbury, to drunken driving on Dec. 3 in Orleans;

Michael Cheney, 52, of Newport Center, to attempting to take deer over bait on Oct. 22 in Newport Center; and

Christopher Crease, 18, of Newport, to consuming alcohol as a minor and violating conditions of release on Nov. 18 in Newport.

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