Prime Suspect in U. of Vt. Slaying Agrees to Stay in Jail

The man police consider their prime suspect in the death of a University of Vermont student has dropped his efforts to be released on bail.

Brian L. Rooney, 36, of Richmond, was scheduled for a hearing in Vermont District Court for Chittenden County on Tuesday. He has not been charged in Michelle Gardner-Quinn's death, but is being held on charges that he repeatedly sexually assaulted a former girlfriend and tried to hire someone to kill her.

In a three-sentence court document filed Monday, the state's attorney's office and defense lawyer David Sleigh of St. Johnsbury said they had agreed to skip the bail hearing. It was canceled, and no other hearings have been scheduled.

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The body of Gardner-Quinn, a 21-year-old UVM senior from Arlington, Va., was found Oct. 13 in Richmond. The discovery came six days after she was last seen walking back toward campus after a night out in downtown Burlington. She had been celebrating a friend's birthday.

Police have said Rooney loaned her his cell phone early that morning and she was last seen walking up Burlington's Main Street with him.

Burlington police said Monday that may discuss the Gardner-Quinn case on later this week with reporters, "if we are lucky and things come together," said Lieut. Mike Schirling, a police spokesman.