Man arrested in Laconia on weapons charges & for 3rd DWI offense

LACONIA – A Meredith man is charged with two counts of being a felon in possession of a dangerous weapon after being arrested Saturday night.
Benjamin Vachon, 30, of Powers Road, who was initially pulled over by police while driving, was also charged with driving while intoxicated-third offense and one count of violating a restraining order for having a weapon in his possession.
Affidavits obtained from the 4th Circuit Court, Laconia Division said a motorist called police at 9:41 p.m. to tell them a white Ford Explorer, one police determined later was driven by Vachon, was headed north on Union Avenue near Cantin's Chevrolet at 9:41 p.m. and "was all over the place."
The motorist followed the car and notified police the car had stopped at 38 Belvidere St. in Lakeport and was parked on the wrong side of the street.
An officer working in plain clothes responded two minutes later and reported Vachon was moving west on Belvidere St. and headed on to Elm Street. The detective followed the car until a uniformed officer could make the traffic stop on Elm Street, near the Laconia Country Club.
The uniformed officer said she saw the car cross over the double yellow line as well as the fog line. She said the car also has its left turn signal for several hundred feet was was driving about 20 miles per hour.
Affidavits said she stopped the vehicle and Vachon gave her his driver's license. She described his as eyes as heavy-lidded and said he was disoriented and confused. He allegedly performed poorly on field sobriety tests and was placed under arrest.
While performing a routine inventory search of the car and after performing a records check, police reports indicate the detective and a second uniformed police officer found a 9 mm handgun tucked into the steering column of his car. Police also found an empty handgun clip on the floor of the backseat and immediately stopped the search, impounded the vehicle, and applied for search warrant.
After getting the warrant, police found a second hand gun, a Kel Tec 380 in a box located in a backpack in the backseat of the Explorer.
While being transported, the arresting officer reported Vachon said, in what she described as a "spontaneous utterance," that he knew it was his girlfriend who had called the police because she was trying to get him in trouble.
He allegedly told her they had what he described as a "little tiff" and she had "over-reacted" by getting a restraining order.
Affidavits said police confirmed that his girlfriend had taken out a restraining order on March 8, 2013.
Affidavits also said Vachon was convicted of first-degree assault and possession of a weapon while committing a crime in 2004, one count of theft by unauthorized taking in 2003 and two previous DWIs — one in 2005 and one in 2007.
Vachon is scheduled for a probable cause hearing April 4. Should he post bail, he is ordered to live at 89 Cherry Valley Road in Gilford. He is to stay away from his girlfriend and not enter into Center Harbor.