Lebanon High coach charged with domestic assault

By ANNA MERRIMAN

Valley News Staff Writer

Published: 03-19-2021 9:41 AM

WHITE RIVER JUNCTION — The Lebanon High School baseball coach resigned after he was charged this week with assaulting his wife with a bat and breaking four of her ribs, according to court documents.

Travis Pelletier, 35, of Hartford, pleaded not guilty Tuesday in Windsor Superior Court to one felony count of first-degree aggravated assault, one misdemeanor count of domestic assault and two misdemeanor counts of interference with access to emergency services, according to court documents.

Superior Court Judge Elizabeth Mann released him on conditions that included not having any contact with his wife of three years, Courtney MacNamee, and not owning any weapons.

In a statement on Wednesday, Lebanon High School Principal Ian Smith wrote that Pelletier, who took over as the baseball coach in Lebanon last year, has stepped down for “personal reasons.”

A call to Pelletier on Wednesday morning for comment was not returned. Joseph Strain, an attorney for Pelletier, wrote in an email Wednesday evening that Pelletier “absolutely disputes these allegations” and that he “looks forward to a real investigation and his day in court.”

Pelletier’s arrest came after a co-worker of MacNamee’s went to the Hartford Police Department on Monday and reported that MacNamee called him that afternoon about the alleged assault she had endured throughout the weekend, according to an affidavit written by Hartford Police Officer Thomas Howell.

In the call, MacNamee told the co-worker she had just been released from the hospital, where she was being treated for broken ribs, and that she was worried Pelletier would kill her, the affidavit said.

When officers spoke with MacNamee at the house she shares with her mother and Pelletier, she told police that the assaults are “pretty bad” and that her husband hits her weekly, according to the affidavit.

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In the latest incident, MacNamee told police that Pelletier had hit her with a baseball bat over the weekend, fracturing four of her ribs. When asked if she wanted to talk to someone with WISE Upper Valley, a resource for domestic violence victims, MacNamee said she was reluctant because Pelletier would “find me, he will kill me, that’s for sure,” the affidavit said.

Police spoke to Pelletier when he came home and the coach denied ever hitting his wife, instead claiming that she got drunk and began “flailing around,” so he grabbed her to help her, according to the affidavit.

Police wrote that they have received several 911 hang-up calls at the residence in recent years, but Pelletier claimed the calls were “accidents.” However, MacNamee later told police that those calls had been placed following “physical altercations,” and that Pelletier had prevented her from talking to officers during those incidents, according to the affidavit.

A call to MacNamee on Wednesday for comment was not returned.

Pelletier, who also works at The Silver Screen LLC, a commercial screen-printing company in White River Junction, has served as a baseball coach around the Upper Valley for years. He graduated from Lebanon High School in 2003 and went to Keene State College before returning to Lebanon and coaching the junior varsity baseball team for five years.

He’s also served a season at Rivendell Academy, then seven years as coach at Kearsarge Regional High School. Pelletier was hired as the coach for Lebanon High in early 2020 to fill an open position following the death of former coach Doug Ashey in 2019. However, he never coached a game because the season was canceled due to the COVID-19 outbreak.

Pelletier’s next hearing has been scheduled for April 6.

Anna Merriman can be reached at amerriman@vnews.com.

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