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Addison County state’s attorney returns to work amid pending DUI charge

A close-up of a woman's face. She is not smiling. She has dark short hair and is wearing dark-framed glasses.
Glenn Russell
Addison County State’s Attorney Eva Vekos at her arraignment in February. Vekos is back after taking three weeks of medical leave following her initial court appearance.

Addison County State’s Attorney Eva Vekos has returned to work after taking three weeks of medical leave following her arraignment on a charge that she allegedly drove drunk to a crime scene.

Vekos, in a press release on Sunday, said that she used the break to reflect on her arrest and its impact on her and the community. And she said the incident has brought her a new perspective on her work as a prosecutor.

“Being a defendant in a criminal case brings me an unwelcome but important understanding of what the accused experience in our criminal legal system as well,” Vekos wrote.

More from Vermont Public: Addison County’s top prosecutor pleads not guilty to DUI charge

Vekos pleaded not guilty in February to a charge of driving under the influence, a misdemeanor that carries a potential two-year prison sentence and $750 fine. The case is still pending.

Vekos declined an interview request on Monday.

In her press release, she said she also felt “deep regret” for an email she sent to the top police officials in Addison County shortly after her arrest. In the email, obtained through a public records request, she told police officials she no longer felt safe around law enforcement and that police in the region had elementary school writing skills.

“It was insulting, hurtful and unkind,” Vekos wrote. “That email does not at all reflect my true feelings, which include a profound respect for the hard work and dedication of uniformed and other police officials who work so tirelessly to promote our safety.”

Vekos said in the press release that she planned to meet with the Addison County police chiefs and sheriff to “personally express my apology.”

More from Vermont Public: Addison County state's attorney says she feels unsafe around police in email sent after DUI arrest

Vekos is scheduled to meet with police chiefs on April 4 during a regular meeting held by the county’s top law enforcement officials, said Addison County Sheriff Michael Elmore.

Elmore, in an interview on Monday, said he wasn’t sure how Vekos could repair the relationship with law enforcement.

“I think there'll just always kind of be that distrust, so to speak, in the back of my mind when dealing with her,” Elmore said. “In some ways, I don't think we can go back to where we were before, but I'm definitely willing to work with her and move forward as best we can.”

Vekos was arrested in late January after police say she appeared intoxicated at a house in Bridport where Vermont State Police were investigating a suspicious death. According to police affidavits, she allegedly smelled of alcohol and was slurring her speech. She told police she drank one gin and tonic with dinner, and then refused to take a field sobriety test.

Vekos was elected Addison County state’s attorney in 2022.

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Liam is Vermont Public’s public safety reporter, focusing on law enforcement, courts and the prison system.
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