Police arrest suspect in Montpelier credit union robbery

BARRE, Vt. (WCAX) Police say they've captured a Johnson man wanted in connection with the robbery of a bank in Montpelier in January. In an early morning raid at the Highgate Apartments in Barre, police say they arrested Joshua Preston, 29.

Preston pleaded not guilty in court Friday to accessory to armed robbery.

"Mr. Preston is alleged to have been involved in acting as an accessory in Nathan Giffin's armed robbery," said Washington County State's Attorney Rory Thibault.

That armed robbery at the VSECU on January 16 eventually led to Giffin's shooting death by police at the Montpelier High School athletic field hours later.

In court paperwork, officers describe Giffin as dressed in all black, brandishing a firearm and yelling, "give me all of your money, your money out."

After he took off, an officer responding to the scene noted a black Mitsubishi Lancer driving suspiciously nearby. "A Montpelier Police officer observed Mr. Preston in a vehicle at the Park and Ride approximately a half a mile from the credit union," Thibault said.

That Park & Ride was along the bike path that police say Giffin ran away on, though Giffin never made it past the high school. Authorities also say that cell phone records show that shortly after the robbery, Preston was leaving the Montpelier area.

Police believe Preston may have been the getaway driver, and that he and Giffin had been living together before at a sobriety house in Burlington and were kicked out. Giffin's girlfriend also allegedly told police he owed Preston money for a drug debt. Paperwork shows police had been trying to find Preston since shortly after the alleged robbery, but that he remained elusive. In April, police got an arrest warrant.

"Hopefully this case will provide additional closure and answers as to what took place on that day," Thibault said.

Prosecutors say all of the money from the VSECU robbery was recovered at the shooting scene at the high school.