- Associated Press - Wednesday, January 9, 2019

MONTPELIER, Vt. (AP) - Investigators should have sought an arrest warrant for a man they said fled a Vermont drug treatment facility and was later charged with kidnaping and sexually assaulting a woman, state police said.

In a timeline released late Tuesday of the disappearance of Everett Simpson, state police said investigators should have done more after they found out Simpson left the Valley Vista facility in Bradford on Jan. 4, including sending an alert to other neighboring police departments and informing the public.

Simpson, 41, formerly of St. Albans, Vermont, is facing federal charges that he kidnapped a woman and her son from outside the Mall of New Hampshire in Manchester on Saturday and drove to White River Junction, where he sexually assaulted the woman in a hotel room in front of her son.

Simpson had been in custody following a September arrest for stealing a car, leading police on a chase and assaulting a state trooper. He was released from jail Jan. 3 on a court-ordered condition he report to the drug treatment facility.

He was reported missing from the facility the next night. Despite initial attempts to locate him, police acknowledged their response was inadequate.

“The circumstances surrounding this incident are under review, including a formal investigation by the Vermont State Police Internal Affairs Unit,” police said in the Tuesday statement.

They would provide no additional information.

The timeline released by police said that on the morning of Jan. 5, police in Manchester, New Hampshire, about 100 miles (161 kilometers) southeast of the drug facility, found Simpson’s unoccupied vehicle in a parking garage. Later that night, state police learned Simpson was a suspect in the sexual assault in Vermont, about 75 miles (121 kilometers) from Manchester. He was arrested just outside of Philadelphia the next evening after crashing a stolen vehicle.

Simpson was arraigned at his hospital bedside Monday by a Pennsylvania court. In addition to the federal charges, he faces 14 motor vehicle charges in Pennsylvania. Court records show he’s being held on $1 million bail and is due to appear again in court Jan. 17. Court records did not indicate whether he had an attorney.

Federal prosecutors in Vermont have filed paperwork to have him returned to Vermont.


This story has been corrected to show the statement was released Tuesday, not Monday.


AP Reporter Claudia Lauer in Philadelphia contributed to this report.

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