A former officer with the St. Albans police department has been acquitted at trial

ST. ALBANS, Vt. (AP) — A former officer with the St. Albans police department has been acquitted at trial of a charge of simple assault stemming from a 2019 incident in which he allegedly used a stun gun to incapacitate a vandalism suspect, the Vermont Attorney General’s office says. The Franklin County jury returned the verdict on Friday in favor of Mark Schwartz, 34, of Cambridge. Schwartz’s attorney, Robert Kaplan, said Monday the charge was unfounded in law or practice. By deciding to prosecute what Kaplan described as a routine, lawful arrest is certain to have a chilling effect on law enforcement officers, which will lead to decrease in public safety, he said.