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Guilty! Vermont State Trooper Stole Evidence.

'Breach of trust': Former state trooper strikes plea deal in evidence room theft case

April 5th, 2024

Giancarlo DiGenova, who resigned his position last year, received a probationary sentence Friday after admitting to five criminal charges, including a felony grand larceny count for the theft of a $14,000 gold Rolex watch.

BURLINGTON — A former Vermont State Police trooper received a probationary sentence and was ordered to take part in a restorative justice program Friday after pleading guilty to five criminal charges related to his stealing from an evidence room while still on the force.

Giancarlo DiGenova, 45, entered guilty pleas in Chittenden County Superior criminal court in Burlington to a felony grand larceny charge and misdemeanor counts of petty larceny, providing false information to police, neglect of duty and making a false statement.

More than a dozen other charges stemming from the investigation into thefts from the evidence room at the Williston state police barracks were dismissed as part of a plea agreement.

DiGenova, speaking in court before Judge Navah C. Spero sentenced him, said that he was "fully aware of the gravity of my actions" in breaking not only the law but also the trust and respect people put in the Vermont State Police.

"I apologize to the court and the state police," he said, adding, "Words cannot describe the regret and remorse I have in my heart."

DiGenova was sentenced under the plea deal to six months to three years probation on the charges of providing false information to police, neglect of duty and making a false statement.

On the petty larceny and grand larceny charges, DiGenova's sentence was deferred for three years and he was placed on probation.

If DiGenova abides by the terms of his probation, which include completing 100 hours of community service and completing a community restorative justice program, the two larceny charges would be cleared from his record.

Spero, the judge, told DiGenova that the plea agreement provides him with a "second-chance" as he works to restore his sense of self-respect and integrity.

However, Spero said, if he violates the terms of his probation he can expect a harsher response, particularly given that he was a state trooper at the time of the offenses.

Chittenden County State's Attorney Sarah George, the prosecutor, said after the hearing that the plea agreement was a "fair" deal reached between the parties.

Under its terms, George said, DiGenova will get a chance to avoid a felony on his record in the future while at the same time having the misdemeanor convictions stand.

"That seems to me a good balance," the prosecutor said. "Those misdemeanors are important ones that will keep him from being a cop."

Robert Kaplan, DiGenova's attorney, said after the hearing that the plea agreement took into account not only the offenses but "all the good work" his client had previously done in the community.

Kaplan added that DiGenova looked forward "to moving on with his life having learned some important lessons here and having an opportunity to pay the community back for the breach of trust and loss of confidence that his actions led to."

According to charging documents, the estimated total value of the items DiGenova allegedly stole was about $40,000. The stolen items consisted of a $14,000 gold Rolex men's watch, stud earrings, Apple Airpod earbuds and case, keys and a wallet, according to court filings.

Police affidavits stated that DiGenova accessed the storage room "numerous times" after the items were stored. He was suspended from the force in late 2022, after troopers discovered that evidence had gone missing.

The grand larceny charge DiGenova admitted to Friday involved the theft of the Rolex watch. The petty larceny charge stemmed from an incident uncovered during the probe related to him stealing ADHD medication meant for a child while he responded to a domestic disturbance at a Bolton home.

DiGenova became a trooper in 2009, with assignments including the Williston, Middlesex and Bradford barracks, and the Narcotics Investigation Unit. He resigned on Feb. 7, 2023.

Last month, state police announced that DiGenova was facing additional charges after discovering that additional evidence, including a gold necklace and a diamond pendant, had allegedly gone missing.

Those charges were not part of the plea agreement and remain pending.

Charges are still pending against him in Washington County dealing with allegations of the theft of items from the Berlin state police barracks while he was a trooper. 

Former Chief gets 10 days in jail!
You can't make this stuff up!
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