HUDSON — Jury selection begins Monday in Columbia County Court for the trial of four defendants in the Harold Handy III assault case in 2020. Here are six things you need to know.
Who is on trial?
Alex Rosenstrach, 37, and his wife Kelly Rosenstrach, 32, of Kinderhook; Bryan Haag, 37, of Kinderhook, an IRS agent; and Cory Gaylord, 31, of Craryville, operator of Gaylord Contracting, will stand trial on six counts charging them with the alleged beating of Harold Handy III, of Kinderhook, a mechanic at the family-owned Handy Repairs & Auto Maintenance, during a Fourth of July party at the Rosenstrachs’ Kinderhook home. Alex Rosenstrach is the former owner of ClubLife Health and Fitness in Valatie. Kelly Rosenstrach is a Columbia County sheriff’s deputy.
What are the charges?
Alex Rosenstrach is charged with two counts of third-degree assault, class A misdemeanors; first-degree unlawful imprisonment, a class E felony; third-degree coercion and second-degree reckless endangerment, both class A misdemeanors. Kelly Rosenstrach is charged with third-degree coercion, a class A misdemeanor and first-degree unlawful imprisonment, a class E felony. Bryan Haag is charged with three counts of third-degree assault, class A misdemeanors and first-degree unlawful imprisonment, a class E felony. Cory Gaylord is charged with two counts of third-degree assault, class A misdemeanors; first-degree unlawful imprisonment, a class E felony; third-degree coercion, a class A misdemeanor and second-degree reckless endangerment, a class A misdemeanor.
When were some charges dropped?
Two weeks before Christmas in 2021, Columbia County Judge Richard Koweek tossed out several charges against the four defendants. Koweek dismissed the charge of second-degree gang assault, a class C violent felony, against all four defendants. The charge of second-degree assault, a class D violent felony, against Alex Rosenstrach and Bryan Haag, were thrown out. Koweek also dismissed two charges of misdemeanor official misconduct against Kelly Rosenstrach.
Where did the alleged assault happen?
Harold Handy III was allegedly beaten in the early in the morning of July 5 during a Fourth of July party at the home of Alex and Kelly Rosenstrach at 319 county Route 21 in Kinderhook. Columbia County 911 sent sheriff’s deputies to assist the Valatie Rescue Squad at the Rosenstrach home.
How severe were Handy’s injuries?
Handy was hospitalized on the night of the party at Albany Medical Center after being treated for 44 minutes at the Rosenstrachs’ home at about 1 a.m. July 5 by paramedics of the Valatie Rescue Squad. After he was treated by the Valatie Rescue Squad at the scene, he was taken to Albany Medical Center for further treatment of an eye injury. He was admitted to Albany Medical Center where he underwent surgery to repair fractures to the left orbital bone and medial wall of his eye. Handy later underwent a second operation to insert a plate to cover the area where the first surgical procedure was performed.
Why was the trial delayed?
Besides the legal wrangling and the number of defendants, the COVID-19 pandemic was reaching its peak at the time of the alleged assault and made assembly in the confined space of a courtroom impossible for months.