Man accused of St. Johnsbury shooting refuses to appear before judge

Published: Jul. 7, 2022 at 3:41 PM EDT
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ST. JOHNSBURY, Vt. (WCAX) - An unusual moment in court on Thursday when the alleged triggerman in a shooting in St. Johnsbury refused to appear before the judge.

Felipe Cotto, 40, of Chicopee, Massachusetts, is now due in court on Friday to face charges of attempted second-degree murder and aggravated assault.

Felipe Cotto
Felipe Cotto(Courtesy: Vt. State Police)

Cotto was arrested Wednesday after Vermont State Police say he shot Nathan Smires, 36, of Barnet, in the neck.

Smires was sent to the Dartmouth-Hitchcock Medical Center with life-threatening injuries.

Court paperwork says Smires was supposed to meet Cotto and his girlfriend Casey Squires, 21, of Sheffield, at the park and ride in St. Johnsbury to collect heroin, and the three got into an argument. Police say they then drove to the Maplefields on Route 2, where they say Cotto shot Smires.

Squires, who’s accused of being an accessory, pleaded not guilty to her charges on Thursday. She was given several conditions and a $7,500 secured appearance bond.

Casey Squires
Casey Squires(Courtesy: Vt. State Police)

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Police arrest 2 suspects in connection with St. Johnsbury shooting

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