COLCHESTER — The 24-year-old man suspected of a Wednesday morning shooting took his own life after police tracked him to a secluded area off of Creek Farm Road.
Multiple police agencies were involved in the search for the suspect, Evan Labonte, who allegedly shot another man multiple times in Underhill.
Labonte fled the scene of the shooting, which was reported at about 7:30 a.m, police said. His vehicle was later found near Sandbar State Park in Milton and a Chittenden County sheriff’s deputy in an unmarked cruiser followed the vehicle to the Breezy Acres mobile home park in Colchester.
By Wednesday afternoon, the search had expanded to the nearby community, at the intersection of U.S.2 and 7 and Creek Farm Plaza. A helicopter from U.S. Customs and Border Protection also was in the area.
The daylong search led to a marshy, wooded area between Creek Farm Road and Interstate 89, where police, including members of the Tactical Services Unit of the Vermont State Police, identified the suspect.
When law enforcement officers began to speak with Labonte from a distance, he raised a handgun to his head and fired a shot, killing himself, police said.
Victim in intensive care
The victim of the shooting, a 29-year-old man whose name has not been released, was taken to the University of Vermont Medical Center in Burlington, where he is listed critical condition in the intensive care unit.
The events leading up to the shooting began overnight on Tuesday, when Labonte sent multiple text messages to a former girlfriend, police said.
On Wednesday morning, Labonte ambushed a vehicle driven by the girlfriend’s current boyfriend as he backed his vehicle out of the garage of a home at 50 Meadow Lane in Underhill, according to police. The victim was struck by multiple rounds but managed to return inside the home.
Police are asking anyone with information about the events of the day call the Vermont State Police in Williston at 802-878-7111.
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