The men accused of killing a self-employed Derry carpenter used the ruse of buying drugs from him in order to steal his marijuana stash and cash he kept inside his house, according to court documents unsealed this week.

On Aug. 12, five men hatched a plan to raid Jason Violette's home, and then called him to arrange a drug purchase, the records said. The alleged robbers donned bandannas, gloves and a ski mask before entering the three-story home at 207 Hampstead Road in Derry around 9:45 p.m.

The botched robbery ended with Violette, 29, dying from a single gunshot wound to the chest.

The cases of all five men charged in connection with Violette's death are now in Rockingham County Superior Court, where a grand jury is soon expected to return indictments in the case.

The Eagle-Tribune petitioned to have the arrest warrants and affidavits unsealed. The documents are based on police interviews with witnesses and participants in the robbery. Judge Kenneth McHugh approved the request Monday.

The affidavits show how the alleged shooter, Christopher Gagne, 25, of Manchester came to be inside Violette's house through a recently forged relationship with Troy Whipple, 24, also of Manchester. Whipple and his friend Andre Rivera, 19, of Derry played major roles in planning the heist, according to affidavits written by Derry police Detective Eric Brown.

"In the days before the robbery, Troy Whipple told Rivera about Violette's home and that he had drugs in the home," Brown wrote. "Rivera then introduced Whipple to Gagne."

Planning for the robbery began at a South Avenue apartment in Derry, the home of Justin (aka "Little Justin") Dombrowski, the affidavit said. Dombrowski has not been implicated in the case.

Ryan Mead, 18, of Derry supplied his father's gold Nissan Altima to drive the alleged robbers. Jordan Webster, 18, of Derry also agreed to join the robbery scheme, the affidavits said.

The plan

Those who attended the gathering told police that "Rivera did most of the talking. He believed they would find five pounds of marijuana in the home," Brown wrote. "He also stated that he would walk up the driveway of the home while Gagne and Webster traveled out of sight in the woods along the driveway, and they could enter through a back door that was always unlocked."

Mead told police that Whipple knew Violette because they had worked together, according to Brown's affidavit.

"Whipple stated (to others) he had purchased 'trees' from Violette in the past, and he knew that Violette kept marijuana in a backpack," Brown wrote. "He also knew that Violette had a large amount of cash and a gun he usually kept in a safe. He telephoned Violette that evening in order to schedule a drug purchase."

Police later found a scale, marijuana and cocaine inside Violette's first-floor bedroom. Cocaine was stored inside a clear cellophane bag tucked inside a Marlboro cigarette package, the affidavits said. A backpack found in Violette's bedroom contained a gallon-sized Ziploc bag of marijuana, according to Brown's affidavit. The court records do not indicate whether any money was found inside the house.

"They planned to take money and marijuana during the robbery, and they discussed the fact that Gagne would bring a gun with him to the robbery," the affidavits said. "Before going towards the home, Webster wore a bandanna and gloves and Rivera wore a ski mask and gloves."

After buying gas at the Shell station on Birch Street in Derry, the group allegedly traveled south on Route 28 to Island Pond Road, heading east until parking on Maurice Road, around the corner from Violette's house.

'It wasn't supposed to go that way'

Violette's cell phone records indicate that on the night of Aug. 12, "he telephoned Whipple several times at approximately 8:50 p.m.," according to affidavits. Violette also called a friend, Scott Dyson, to invite him to stop by the house.

Gagne donned gloves and put a bandanna over his face, then led Rivera and Webster inside through the back door of the home, the affidavit said.

Whipple stayed outside the house because he didn't want to be recognized by Violette, Brown wrote. Mead remained in the car. Gagne later recounted to friends exchanging blows with Violette on the second floor of the house before he "racked a round" into his gun and fired, according to Brown's affidavit.

Dyson, Violette's friend, apparently missed the robbers by minutes. He called 911 when he arrived and found Violette's body with a pistol lying on the floor nearby, according to the affidavits. The alleged robbers returned to Dombrowski's house after they left Violette's home.

Gagne, who stayed through the night at Dombrowski's home, called someone, telling them, "They found the body. I have to get out of here. It wasn't supposed to go that way." Two weeks later, Gagne called Derry police to say he wanted to turn himself in, but didn't want to be "interrogated" without a lawyer.

"I have nothing to do with this," Gagne added, according to Brown. "He also stated that he had been threatened by people connected to the victim, and he was going to 'catch a bullet' for this." Police arrested Gagne outside his Manchester apartment on Sept. 7, then the rest of the alleged robbers over the next week.

Gagne is charged with second-degree murder. Whipple, Rivera and Jordan face charges of accomplice to second-degree murder. All four are being held at Rockingham County Jail. Mead is charged with accomplice to armed robbery, and is free on bail.

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