Body identified as missing woman

GREENPORT—The dead body of a woman found in a wooded area off Old Post Road near Rabbit Lane in Kinderhook in the early morning hours of September 10 has been positively identified as Halle P. Schmidt, 21, of Pumpkin Hollow Road, Copake, according to a press release from Sheriff David P. Bartlett.

Ms. Schmidt was reported missing by family members September 4.

Identification was made through evidence found and collected at the scene by the State Police Forensic Identification Unit and Columbia County Sheriff’s Office evidence technicians.

The positive identification came at the conclusion of an autopsy conducted by Dr. Jeffrey Hubbard at St. Peter’s Hospital in Albany, Sunday morning September 11.

Ms. Schmidt was identified by matching clothing that she was last seen wearing, tattoos that were on her body and information that was obtained through the investigation.

Ms. Schmidt was last seen on foot in the area of State Route 66 and Route 23B in Greenport during the early morning hours of Saturday, September 3.

The case is still under active criminal investigation and leads are being followed up by Sheriff’s Office investigators, who have been working closely with Columbia County District Attorney Paul Czajka and his office since the investigation started.

DNA and other samples were taken during the autopsy and sent for laboratory analysis to determine the cause of death, DA Czajka said by phone September 12.

Anyone with information about the case is asked to contact the Columbia County Sheriff’s Office Criminal Investigative Branch at 518 828-4316 or 518 828-3344.

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