Vermont v. CharbonneauAnnotate this Case
Defendant Toby Charbonneau pleaded guilty to felony possession of stolen property and misdemeanor possession of stolen property. He was subsequently ordered to pay restitution in the amount of $35,791. On appeal, he challenged the restitution order, arguing: (1) whether an order of restitution had to relate to the damage caused by the criminal conduct for which defendant pleaded guilty; (2) whether restitution was limited to items that were not recovered and returned to the victim; and (3) whether the trial court was required to make findings as to a defendant’s ability to pay in a restitution order. After review, the Vermont Supreme Court reversed on the first issue: "Defendant was not charged with burglary, and pleaded only to possession of stolen property, a plea based on the recovery of some of the victims’ stolen property from his residence. The restitution order, however, was based on the value of the property burgled from the victims’ residence. [. . .] That defendant had in his possession some of the property stolen from the victims’ home does not mean the criminal act for which defendant was convicted included the burglary of the victims’ home. Possession of stolen property and burglary are entirely separate crimes."