A New York state man was arrested Friday night and charged with strangling a young woman, murdering her and dumping her body in an Albany-area state park.
Ian J Hasselwander22, of Petersburg, NY, is charged with second-degree murder, first-degree assault, first-degree strangulation and concealing a human corpse, the Rensselaer County Sheriff’s Department said on a Friday night Press release posted on Facebook.
Petersburg is east-northeast of Albany near the confluence of the New York, Massachusetts, and Vermont borders. The sheriff’s department called it took Hasselwander into custody at 18:19
The accused is allegedly strangled and murdered Morgan Bates, a 20-year-old local woman who went missing more than a week ago. Bates was reportedly from White Creek, near Cambridge and Eagle Bridge, and was allegedly a 2019 Graduate from Cambridge High School.
It’s unclear how — or if — the suspect and victim knew each other, Albany, NY Times Union written down.
A Online obituary from a local funeral home says Bates was born on March 29, 2001 in nearby Bennington, Vt. Aside from living on the New York-Vermont border, she also spent some time growing up in Kentucky, the obituary states. She worked for Stewart’s, a local chain of supermarkets in Pownal, Vt. She loved horses and also worked at a few local stables. Horses and horse racing are part of the local culture; The area where Bates lived is near Saratoga Springs, NY, which is home to a popular race track. Bates’ hobbies were listed as horseback riding, 4×4 driving and hunting.
According to the sheriff’s department, the case unfolded when a missing persons report was filed on Tuesday, February 22, regarding Bates. Bate’s body turned up five days later on Sunday, February 27, near Black River Road — believed to be in nearby Stephentown, NY — on what the sheriff’s department described as “state land.” Albany NBC affiliate WNYT reported that the young woman’s body was in Cherry Plain State Park, a 175-acre wooded reserve with a small lake. The park is typical of other forested states in the area.
Bates’ disappearance drew significant attention in rural communities along the New York-Vermont border and in the greater Albany area. Sheriff’s departments in both Washington and Rensselaer Counties asked the public to keep an eye out for the young woman almost immediately after her disappearance, WNYT reported early in the investigation.
“She was last seen Sunday at Eagle Bridge, Washington County, with a possible sighting later that day in Petersburgh, Rensselaer County,” WNYT called back on February 23, apparently citing a earlier press release from the sheriff’s department. “This sighting was at 2 a.m. She has not been heard from since.”
Eagle Bridge, Petersburgh, White Creek, Cambridge and Stephentown are all within approximately 45 minutes of Washington and Rensselaer counties.
Citing a relative, WNYT continues reported on March 3 that Bates has been good at keeping in touch and generally keeping her family updated on her whereabouts.
the Times Union and WNYT both noted that authorities had previously described the victim’s death as “suspicious.”
Hasselwander was arraigned in a municipal court in Troy, NY and is being held without bail in Rensselaer County Jail, the sheriff’s department called. It is unclear when his next court date is scheduled.
“Law enforcement has been working on this case around the clock since Morgan Bates disappeared.” called District Attorney of Rensselaer County Mary Pat Donnelly in a prepared statement. “It was definitely not the result we had hoped for. This arrest is the first step towards justice for Morgan and her family.”
Rensselaer County Sheriff Patrick Russo called He wanted to commend the “professionalism, diligence and dedication” of the myriad agencies whose staff “worked long hours around the clock” to bring about the “timely arrest.”
The Rensselaer County Sheriff’s Office, the New York State Police and the Rensselaer County District Attorney’s Office were the primary agencies in the case. The Washington County Sheriff’s Office, the New York State Forest Rangers, the New York State Intelligence Center (NYSIC) and the Capital Region Crime Analysis Center (CRCAC) also played key roles in the sheriff’s department called.
Finally, a note on spelling. Different spellings of a local parish – Petersburg and Petersburgh – are reflected in the original sources cited in this report. The area to which both spellings refer appears to be the same. For example, the signs adorning the local City Hall and the front of the local police office just down the road include the letter “H” at the end of the word “Petersburgh,” but the Postal Service’s official website for that location not. The county sheriff’s department also spelled the place without the “H” – “Petersburg”. Local businesses and institutions seem to use both spellings. The “H” even seems to have been erased from one local street sign. The difference of opinion over the inclusion or omission of the apparently controversial letter may go down in the history books but does not appear to be relevant to the criminal trial before the court. For what it’s worth, residents also use three spellings of another place name in the area: Hoosick, Hoosac, and Hoosic. However, in these seemingly triple cases, one spelling for a city, one for a mountain, and one for a river generally apply.
[All images via the Rensselaer County Sheriff’s Department.]
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https://lawandcrime.com/crime/ian-hasselwander-charged-with-strangling-and-murdering-morgan-bates-dumping-body-in-new-york-state-park/ Ian Hasselwander charged with the murder of Morgan Bates in New York