Home News and Features “French Block” Gunshot Strikes Walgreens Building

“French Block” Gunshot Strikes Walgreens Building

A bullet hole in the window above Walgreens on Main Street in Montpelier was identified by the Montpelier Police Department Sept. 30. Photo by Carla Occaso.
Someone allegedly fired a gun from the recently renovated “French Block” building in Montpelier, striking a window of the Walgreens Building across the street. No injuries were found.

A person called the Montpelier Police Department at 12:42 a.m. on Sept. 30, reporting the sound of a gunshot in their building, according to a police report issued by Deputy Chief Eric Nordenson. The caller reported the shot came from the apartment below them, identifying 34 Main Street, apartment #205. The police report states this apartment is rented by Joel M. Goldsmith, 39. 

Officers responded to the scene, and found the suspect apartment empty. They then searched the building and found no injuries. After applying for, and being granted a search warrant, officers searched the apartment and found a single bullet had appeared to have struck 29 Main Street — the building across the street that houses Walgreens and other offices.

The Bridge spoke to two residents of 34 Main Street on Saturday, Oct. 1, Neither of whom were willing to be named. One, a man, said he lived right next to the suspect apartment and heard the sound of gunshot. It sounded like a domino smacking a table, he said. “I woke up from a dead sleep, and I immediately recognized it as a gunshot,” he said. Then, he heard a lot of commotion, what he called “a bunch of hustling” and “cussing”. But, since he didn’t feel personally under attack, he went back to sleep. The man said he was a veteran and recognized the sound of the shot as a .22 or .25 caliber gun. He said he knew the apartment resident and had no qualms with him.

Residents of 34 Main Street, who declined to be named, identified these windows as those belonging to the apartment where a gunshot was fired Sept. 30 in Montpelier. Photo by Carla Occaso.
The other resident who spoke to The Bridge, a young woman, said that the apartment often generated noise because it had a lot of traffic in and out, especially late at night. She said she had complained that the resident smoked cigarettes and other substances when such conduct is forbidden inside the building. However, she did not hear the gunshot that night, saying, “I slept right through it.” She heard about the shooting “when the cops came pounding on the door at 2 a.m.” She said they asked her if she knew anything, but she told them she did not.

The suspect apartment is in what is known as the “French Block Apartments,” originally built in 1875, according to downstreet.org. Downstreet Housing and Community Development and Housing Vermont partnered to “rejuvenate” the apartments, and completed the project in 2019. 

A gunshot was fired out of a window of the “French Block” building on Main Street in Montpelier on Sept. 30. Photo by Carla Occaso.
The investigation is ongoing and no additional information is available currently.