An East Montpelier man is home on conditions after being charged with seven alleged child sex crimes including four felonies. If convicted, Chad Hurlburt, 42, could face life in prison. Felony charges are for allegedly victimizing a child several years younger than 16-years-old with more than one adult. Hurlburt has disavowed the accusations.
Hurlburt has also been charged with three other alleged crimes (not felonies), including accessory to repeated sexual assault of a child, repeatedly exploiting a vulnerable adult with a sexual act, and accessory to lewd and lascivious conduct involving a vulnerable adult. Hurlburt allegedly subjected the child to multiple abusive scenarios, primarily at 1293 Route 2 in East Montpelier, between May 25, 2021 and May 25, 2022, court documents state. Although he is charged only for acts involving one specific child, another child has previously made allegations, according to court documents. Hurlburt has denied the allegations saying the children were persuaded to make such accusations by adults, according to an affidavit by the investigating detective.
A months-long investigation led by Detective Trooper Matthew Nadeau was triggered in April by a call from the Vermont Department for Children and Families. At that time, Vermont State Police received a report based on alleged disclosures made to a worker at Washington County Mental Health pertaining to a child. The disclosures involved multiple allegations of sexual abuse and other potential alleged crimes, according to court documents. Hurlburt denied the allegations per court documents. After a lengthy follow-up investigation involving several adults and children, state police determined probable cause existed for his arrest.
Police found Hurlburt at his home on Nov. 18 and transported him to the Berlin Barracks before bringing him to the Northeast Correctional Complex to be held without bail.
Following his appearance on Nov. 21 at Washington Superior Court, Hurlburt was released on the conditions he have no contact with two women and two children specified in the affidavit; that he not harass those same people; that he come to court when told; that he give the court clerk his address and phone number and immediately notify the court if it changes; that he abide by a 9:30-p.m.-to-7-a.m. curfew; that he not engage in any “violent, threatening, or tumultuous” behavior; that he stay at least 300-feet away from the women and children mentioned previously; that he stay 300-feet away from their vehicles, places of work, places of schooling; and finally, that he has no unsupervised contact with a child under 16 years old — including electronically — in addition to following all DCF safety plans involving Hurlburt and children.
The investigation involved forensic interviews by family medical professionals, in-person interviews by Detective Trooper Nadeau and other law enforcement, phone interviews, cellphone analyses, computer searches, photos, and videos. Investigation also involved several places in the area, including OUR House in Barre, the Department for Children and Families, a residence on Trailer Park Road in Waterbury, the Berlin VSP barracks, the Northeast Correctional Complex in St. Johnsbury, and a home in Montpelier. It turned out multiple adults and children had alleged involvement in various aspects of numerous illicit incidents.
According to a document signed by Judge Kevin Griffin and the Deputy State’s Attorney dated Nov. 21, amended charges include:
Sexual assault (aggravated, child, more than one), a felony in violation of 13 V.S.A. §3253a(a)(2). The penalty is “not less than 25 years” in prison “with a maximum term of life,” and a possible fine of not more than $50,000.00.
Accessory to sexual assault (aggravated, child, repeated), aiding in the “commission of a felony” by instigating and encouraging such acts in violation of 13 V.S.A. § 3253a(a)(8) and § 3. Same penalty as above.
Accessory to sexual exploitation of a vulnerable adult in violation of 13 V.S.A. § 1379(b), § 1379(c)(2), and § 3, which carries a penalty of 20 years in prison and/or a fine of not more than $10,000.00.
Accessory to sexual exploitation of a vulnerable adult (lewd and lascivious conduct) in violation of 13 V.S.A. § 1379(b), §1379(c)(1), and § 3. This carries a maximum penalty of five years in prison and/or a $10,000.00 fine.
Sexual exploitation (luring a child), a felony in violation of 13 V.S.A. § 2828(a), which carries a penalty of a maximum five years in prison and/or a $10,000.00 fine.
Aiding in the commission of cruelty to a child (death, serious bodily injury or subjected to sexual conduct) in violation of 13 V.S.A. 1304(b)(1) and 13 V.S.A. 3, which is punishable by a maximum 10 years in prison and/or a $20,000.00 fine.
Lewd and lascivious conduct, a violation of 13 V.S.A. 2601 with a maximum penalty of five years in jail and/or a fine of not more than $300.00.