• Second man accused of sex assault on same teen
     | January 16,2013

    BARRE — Vermont State Police say a 15-year-old girl was sexually assaulted by two men.

    A Granite City man is now accused of having sex with the same girl with whom Wendel Excavation owner Bert Wendel is accused of having a sexual relationship.

    Jonathan Amell, 20, pleaded not guilty to felonious sexual assault of a victim under 16 years old on Tuesday in Washington County criminal court. If convicted, he faces a maximum of 20 years in prison and a $10,000 fine.

    State police say the girl would sneak out at night and go to Wendel’s house in Middlesex. Wendel pleaded not guilty to felonious sexual assault Monday.

    According to the state police affidavit for Amell’s case, the girl, Amell and Wendel were all at Wendel’s house one night in December. State police said the girl told them she and Amell were drinking while Wendel was upstairs. The girl told state police she got “extremely intoxicated” that night, according to the affidavit.

    At one point, she and Amell went outside for a cigarette, according to the girl. She said Amell asked her if she wanted to have sex and she said no. The girl said the next thing she remembered was walking out into the woods with Amell and that the two had sex, according to police.

    State police said that during questioning, Amell denied being at Wendel’s house and that there had been a sexual encounter. Wendel had initially denied having Amell at his home as well but eventually admitted Amell had been there on the night in question, according to police.

    Amell’s mother, Toni Lawrence, 51, of Barre, also admitted that Amell had been at Wendel’s home after initially denying it, according to police.

    State police said Lawrence was cited for giving false information to law enforcement for attempting to “keep the suspect and witness out of trouble.” She is scheduled to appear in Washington County criminal court Feb. 21 to answer the charge.

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