County supervisors honor Sheriff’s Sgt. Hofstetter

HUDSON– Sergeant Richard Hofstetter, 68, is retiring after 41 years of service with the agency now called the Columbia County Sheriff’s Office. Sgt. Hofstetter received recognition for his service at the Columbia County Board of Supervisors meeting Wednesday, October 14.

Speakers at the meeting said Sgt. Hofstetter was born in the county, graduated from Hudson High School in 1965, attended Siena College, obtained a degree in accounting and served in the army from 1967 to 1970. After entering as a deputy sheriff, his career with county law enforcement included teaching firearms use, teaching public safety and working with architects to assure the county courthouse met public safety needs.

The board gave Sgt. Hofstetter a certificate, presented by Supervisor John Porecca (Greenport). Sheriff David Bartlett gave Sgt. Hofstetter a plaque, adding, “He taught me how to be a police officer. He was our training instructor for years.”

Supervisor William Hughes, Jr., (Hudson-4th Ward) recognized Sgt. Hofstetter for hiring the county’s first African-American police officer. Sheriff Bartlett called to the podium Sgt. Hofstetter’s son, Deputy Sheriff Jeff Hofstetter. “He’s following his father’s footsteps,” Sheriff Bartlett said.

In addition, at the meeting the Board passed resolutions authorizing public hearings on November 10 on enacting a local law to regulate automatic alarm systems in the county and increasing the membership of the county Board of Health to 11.

The board also heard from former Copake resident Grant Dinehart Langdon, who asked for help dealing with issues he said he still faces stemming following the indictment of his son, who was accused of setting arson fires in the 1980s. Mr. Langdon believes that his son is innocent and that corruption tainted the investigation.

Paul Czajka, who had just become District Attorney at the time, declined to prosecute the case. Mr. Langdon said his son never received a formal apology he was promised. Mr. Langdon said the stress of the ordeal caused his family to lose their farm in 1993. He also charged an insurance company with misdeeds. Mr. Langdon now lives in a suburb of Rochester.

Also at the meeting, Supervisor Hughes reminded those present that the murder of Cory Velazquez was a tragic loss to Hudson and Columbia County.

The next full County Board of Supervisors meeting will take place Wednesday, November 18, at 7:30 pm at 401 State Street in Hudson.



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