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SEYMOUR LAKE - A game warden drove his snowmobile into a woman on her sled because he thought she was trying to get away from him.
Game Warden Jason Dukette was patrolling Seymour Lake Sunday afternoon when he saw Marsha Archer, of Derby, on her way out to an ice fishing shack. According to Albert Stringer, an investigating Auxiliary Trooper for the State Police, Dukette said he thought Archer was trying to avoid him so he headed her way quickly. He did not turn his lights on, Acher said. Stringer confirmed that no lights were turned on.
Stringer said Dukette was headed right for Archer and turned his sled as he approached her snowmobile, but his machine ended up sliding into hers with both sleds ending up side by side.
Archer said she was not trying to avoid the game warden; in fact, she had not seen him until he was about to plow into her.
Archer was thrown from her sled, as was Dukette.
Dukette reportedly is not injured but Archer is. She went to the hospital and is now in a sling, bruised, and unable to work, she said Monday morning.
Neither Dukette nor his supervisor could be reached Monday as both were away at training for the day, according to the state police dispatcher in Derby.
Stringer is working on the investigation but said he did not intend to issue a press release on the accident.
Among their other duties, game wardens are charged with patrolling the lakes and monitoring ice fishing. The warden can check to make sure snowmobilers and any vehicles on the lake are registered, Stringer explained. Police can stop snowmobilers and check registration at any time.
Archer's snowmobile is registered and she was not cited for any reason.
Stringer is a retired Vermont State Police Trooper and serves as an auxiliary trooper on the weekends.