Hiker’s body found at Kaaterskill Falls

Police are investigating after the body of a Yonkers man was found at Kaaterskill Falls. Bill Williams/Columbia-Greene Media

HAINES FALLS — A missing man from downstate New York was found dead at the base of Kaaterskill Falls on Friday, state police Troop F public information officer Steven Nevel said Monday.

The body of Jesse Ritholz, 36, of Yonkers, was found in the water by divers from the state police Underwater Recovery Team, Nevel said.

Ritholz’s body was brought to Ellis Hospital in Schenectady by the Greene County Coroner’s Office for an autopsy. The preliminary cause of death is listed as head injuries from a fall onto the rocks.

Ritholz was first reported missing April 30 by a family member, Nevel said. The family member told state troopers that Ritholz was supposed to come to their home for a visit on April 24.

Ritholz’s mother and father visited his apartment on April 27 and told state police that everything appeared normal, Nevel said.

During the course of the investigation, police learned that Ritholz had rented a black BMW 330 on April 22. A description of the car was given to police agencies across the state.

On Friday, state troopers from Hunter found the vehicle in Haines Falls, in the Laurel House Road parking lot for Kaaterskill Falls, Nevel said.

Uniformed troopers, the State Police Aviation unit, Underwater Recovery Team and the Troop K Bloodhound began to search for Ritholz in the area.

Police were assisted in the search by the Greene County Sheriff’s Office and their dive team, state Forest Rangers, Haines Falls Fire Department, Tannersville Rescue Squad, Hunter Ambulance and Greene Emergency Medical Services.

The investigation is continuing, Nevel said.

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