Sheriff: Claverack woman burglarized neighbor twice

CLAVERACK—A Claverack woman has been arrested for committing two separate residential burglaries at the same location within a five-day span, according to a press release from Columbia County Sheriff David P. Bartlett.

The Sheriff’s Office was contacted Saturday, September 28 by a resident of Tishauser Road reporting that someone had burglarized his home. Deputies and investigators responded to the scene. They found that a large amount of money and a firearm were stolen from the residence.

Five days later, Thursday, October 3 at 1:23pm, Columbia County 911 dispatched deputies to another residence on Tishauser Road for a report that a woman was attempting to gain entry into a parked, unoccupied vehicle in the driveway. While investigating this report, deputies found that the same residence burglarized Saturday had been burglarized again.

The suspect fled the area on foot and members of the Sheriff’s Office, who were assisted by the State Police, swarmed the area in an attempt to locate her. Sheriff’s Office K9 units were engaged and searched a large area in and around the incident location, but the suspect was not found.

As Sheriff’s Office investigators continued with the probe, a possible suspect was developed and Friday morning, October 4, Deputies Peter Merante and John Sullivan encountered the suspect on Tishauser Road. She was later interviewed at the Sheriff’s Office by investigators and subsequently admitted to her involvement in both burglaries.

Selena McFadden, 22, of 419 Tishauser Road was charged with second degree burglary, a class C felony; third degree grand larceny, a class D felony; fourth degree grand larceny, a class E felony; fourth degree criminal mischief and petit larceny, both class A misdemeanors, October 4 at 4:35 p.m.

Sheriff’s Office criminal investigators with the assistance from Columbia County District Attorney Paul Czajka, secured a search warrant for Ms. McFadden’s home to collect evidence relating to the burglaries. The warrant was signed by the Columbia County Court Judge Richard Koweek. The Columbia Greene Shared Services Response Team and Columbia County Sheriff’s Office executed the warrant Friday evening, October 4 and were able to recover some of the proceeds from the burglaries.

Ms. McFadden was arraigned in Claverack Court before Justice Michael Brandon and was sent to the Columbia County Jail in lieu of $1,000 cash bail or $2,000 bail bond. She is scheduled to be back in court at a later date.


A Hudson man wanted on various felonies including a stabbing in August was captured by Hudson Police.

El-Shamar T. Thornton, 26, of Hudson was apprehended by City Police detectives and State Police investigators at a lower Columbia Street residence, early the morning of Tuesday, September 24.

He was charged with various felonies and misdemeanors that span two years of alleged criminal activity.

*March 9, 2017, felony drug indictment for fourth degree criminal possession of a controled substance, a class C felony. This case was a State Police Investigation.

*November 11, 2017, Hudson Police received a call reporting that Mr. Thornton allegedly choked and then beat a woman in front of her seven-year-old child in the area of the Hudson Terrace Apartments. He also allegedly stole her keys and cell phone. An arrest warrant was issued by Hudson City Court, November 19, 2017 for criminal obstruction of breathing, endangering the welfare of a child, fourth degree criminal mischief, petit larceny and second degree harassment.

*January 2, 2018, a Hudson City Court bench warrant was issued for Mr. Thornton charging resisting arrest, a class A misdemeanor

*January 11, 2018, a Columbia County Court bench warrant for failure to appear in Columbia County Court for the 2017 felony drug indictment charge was issued by Judge Jonathan Nichols.

*August 15, 2019 at 9:14 pm, the Hudson City Police Department received a call reporting a stabbing had just occurred on Front Street in the area of the Schuyler Court Apartments. Patrols responded to the area and located the injured victim, a 19-year-old male, who was lying on the sidewalk bleeding, with a knife wound to his abdomen.

Greenport Rescue squad responded to the scene and took the victim to the Columbia County airport where he was taken by helicopter to Albany Medical Hospital for emergency treatment.

Hudson Court signed a felony arrest warrant for Mr. Thornton August 29 on charges of second degree assault with a weapon and third degree criminal possession of a weapon—previous conviction, both class D felonies.

Mr. Thornton was arraigned in both the Hudson City Court and Columbia County Court. Hudson City Court Judge John Connor issued bails at $5,000 cash or $7,500 bond and $25,000 cash or $50,000 bond. He was to return to court at a later date.

Columbia County Judge Nichols sent him to jail without bail on the county bench warrant and to return to court at a later date. The Columbia County District Attorney’s Office and the State Police and the Columbia County Sheriff’s Office assisted HPD with the investigations.

“Mr. Thornton has been dodging the criminal justice system for several years… in and out of court, failure to appear, staying in different communities. Convicted felons can be resourceful when eluding the police, especially associates willingly aid them. I give our team credit for their persistence,” Hudson Police Chief L. Edward Moore said in a press release.

To contact Diane Valden email

Suspect indicted on 2017 murder

Christian Simmons. Photo by Lance Wheeler

HUDSON—Christian Simmons, a/k/a Nahkye Tyler, a/k/a Dondre Tyler, 24, of the Bronx was arraigned in Columbia County Court before Judge Andrew Ceresia October 9, under a sealed indictment charging him with second degree murder, a class A-I felony, according to a joint press release from District Attorney Paul Czajka and Hudson Police Chief L. Edward Moore.

The crime was committed in Hudson August 22, 2017. The victim, Kevin Whitening, 31, of Hudson died of a gunshot wound to the chest. He is survived by his mother, brothers, sisters and a child.

Mr. Simmons was jailed without bail and the case was adjourned until November 1.

Hudson Police investigated this matter in conjunction with the State Police and the Columbia County Sheriff’s Office.

DA Czajka commended Hudson Police and State Police and, specifically, Detective Sergeant Jason Finn, Detective Nicolas Pierro, State Police Senior Investigators Eric Barnes, Kelly Taylor and Michael Castle for their tireless efforts in this extremely complex investigation. The NY/NJ Regional Fugitive Task Force arrested Mr. Simmons in New York City.

Assistant District Attorney Ryan Carty prosecuted and the Columbia County Public Defender appeared on behalf of Mr. Simmons.–Diane Valden

Pictured, (l-r) are: School Resource Deputy Michael Meier, GCS Superintendent Susan Brown and Columbia County Sheriff David Bartlett. Photo contributed

Sheriff gives training, kits to school

GERMANTOWN—The Columbia County Sheriff’s Office donated Stop the Bleed Kit to the Germantown Central School District.

All staff at school district have been fully-trained in the event of an emergency. Questar III Health and Safety, in partnership with Deputy Tony Brahm of the Sheriff’s Office, provided Stop the Bleed training to staff during a recent Superintendent Safety Conference Day.

During the course, more than 90 staff members were trained to manage bleeding in an emergency situation until first responders arrive. Training included lecture as well as hands-on activities.

In addition to providing the training, the Sheriff’s Office purchased kits, using drug seizure monies, and is donating them to area school districts.

“There are a wide variety of emergency situations that may arise in a school district requiring our staff to manage bleeding prior to first responders arriving on the scene. We have a great partnership with the Columbia County Sheriff’s Department, which provided us with this new Stop the Bleed kit. While we hope that an emergency event that requires us to use the kit never occurs, we strongly believe that preparing for the worst is the best procedure to have,” Germantown School Superintendent Susan Brown said in a press release.

Training provides staff with the basic skills to save a life in the event of an uncontrolled bleed. A person can die from blood loss in two to five minutes, making immediate care all the more important as first responders may not arrive on scene in that timeframe.

A Stop the Bleed kit in the district ensures that the school has on-hand, easy access to equipment needed to deal with a variety of emergencies.

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