HANOVER — Prosecutors have dropped a criminal charge against a former Dartmouth College student in connection with a vandalized menorah display on campus, in an agreement that calls for him to pay restitution and meet with members of the local Jewish community and perform community service.
But if the former student fails to stay out of trouble or meet the conditions of the agreement within the next two years, the state could seek another indictment on the felony charge.
Carlos Wilcox was indicted by a Grafton County Superior Court grand jury in December, accused of shooting out the lights on the campus’ public menorah with a BB gun during Hanukkah on Dec. 15, 2020. A sophomore at the time of the incident, Wilcox, of Bronx, N.Y., left the college last year and is no longer enrolled at Dartmouth.
The nol pros agreement between prosecutors and Wilcox, dated April 8 and filed in Grafton County Superior Court, states that Wilcox identified another Dartmouth student by name as the individual responsible for shooting out the menorah lights. Wilcox had been charged with criminal mischief, a Class B felony.
“Carlos has maintained his innocence from the beginning and is pleased that the charge has been dropped and it is now part of the public record,” said S. Amy Spencer, Wilcox’s attorney. “Mortified by even the perception of the incident, he has agreed to pay for damages done while expressly maintaining innocence.”
Grafton County Attorney Marcie Hornick was not reachable for comment.
On Dec. 15, 2020, seven of the nine lights on a menorah set up on the Dartmouth Green were shot with a BB gun. Surveillance cameras caught grainy images of two people walking near the Green, one of them carrying what appeared to be a rifle.
Occurring on the seventh of the eight nights of Hanukkah, the vandalism was widely interpreted to be an act of antisemitism during the sacred religious holiday.
Under the nol pros agreement, Wilcox must pay $2,053.64 in restitution to Dartmouth College and within one year is required to meet with a group of up to 10 community members to be organized by Rabbi Moshe Gray of Dartmouth Chabad.
Wilcox also is to perform 100 hours of community service and “continue substance abuse counseling as recommended by his counselor and remain on ‘good behavior’ without arrests or convictions for ‘major motor vehicle offenses, misdemeanors or felonies,’ ” according to the agreement.