- Associated Press - Tuesday, September 17, 2019

BURLINGTON, Vt. (AP) - A suspect in the disappearance of a man with whom he was conducting a drug deal is expected to plead guilty to a federal firearms charge.

Court documents say Richard Whitcomb of Hartford has agreed to plead guilty to being a felon in possession of a firearm. Under the plea deal, he would be sentenced to three years in prison, with credit for time served.

A judge must approve the deal.

Authorities say Whitcomb likely was the last person to see 19-year-old Austin Colson, before Colson disappeared in January of 2018. Colson’s body was found in Norwich at a property Whitcomb helped maintain.

Whitcomb’s wife said her husband maintains his innocence in the Colson case and says the couple is pleased with the potential plea deal.

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