KINDERHOOK — No arrests had been made as of Monday in an ongoing police investigation into an alleged assault that took place eight days ago at the home of a Columbia County sheriff’s deputy.

A Fourth of July party at the home of Columbia County Deputy Sheriff Kelly Rosenstrach and her husband Alex Rosenstrach, owner of ClubLife Health and Fitness in Valatie, allegedly turned violent and left a man hospitalized.

Valatie Rescue Squad was called to Rosenstrach’s residence at 1:10 a.m. July 5, said Robert Lopez, director of Columbia County 911. Minutes later, sheriff’s deputies arrived on the scene to assist the Valatie Rescue Squad, according to the sheriff’s office.

“Deputies arrived on scene and found a man who had been the victim of an assault that had taken place during a gathering at this location,” according to the sheriff’s office. The Valatie Rescue Squad was on the scene for 44 minutes before transporting the victim, who has not been identified, by ambulance to Albany Medical Center, Lopez said.

The sheriff’s office would not release the incident report from the alleged assault Monday.

“That is an active investigation,” Columbia County Sheriff David Bartlett said. “We don’t give out information on open cases.”

The Rosenstrachs home was searched July 7 by police with a search warrant signed by Columbia County Judge Richard Koweek. Executed search warrants are not public record until after an arrest is made, according to Lucian Chalfen, director of public information for the Office of Court Administration.

The investigation into the alleged assault is being headed up by the sheriff’s office with assistance by the state police Special Investigative Unit.

Lt. Louis Bray, spokesman for the Columbia County Sheriff’s Office, said he does not believe the sheriff’s office investigation of its deputy is a conflict of interest.

“We investigate every incident with the same integrity and skill,” Bray said Friday.

A state reform, which takes effect next April, will establish the Law Enforcement Misconduct Investigative Office within the state Attorney General’s office.

The office will be required to receive and investigate complaints from any source “concerning allegations of corruption, fraud, use of excessive force, criminal activity, conflicts of interest or abuse in any covered agency,” according to the law.

A covered agency means a police agency of any political subdivision within the state, including authorities or agencies maintaining a force or police forces of individuals defined as police officers, according to the law.

The Columbia County Sheriff’s Office addressed public accusations that other deputies were in attendance at the party in a statement the office released last week.

“At this point in the investigation, it has been determined that no other deputy sheriffs were at this residence at the time of the incident,” according to the release.

Kelly Rosenstrach was placed on administrative leave Thursday, four days after the alleged assault.

“[The administrative leave] was appropriate under the circumstances while we investigate the incident that took place at her residence,” Bray said.

The sheriff’s office has not set a time for her return to the job, Bray said.

It is unknown whether Rosenstrach is being paid while on leave because the sheriff’s office would not comment on the matter, citing personnel issues.

Kelly served as Chatham’s school resource officer until April, according to district Superintendent of Schools Salvatore DeAngelo. She was previously known as Kelly Briscoe, but she took the name Rosenstrach after her marriage, DeAngelo said.

Kelly has been employed by the Columbia County Sheriff’s Office for nearly eight years, joining Sept. 26, 2012, according to county records. She earned $68,046 in 2019, according to state records made public by the Empire Center.

State police declined to comment on the case, as the sheriff’s office remains the primary agency investigating the incident, state police Public Information Officer Beau Duffy said Friday.

The sheriff’s office requests anyone with direct knowledge of the alleged assault to contact Investigator Ian Boehme at 518-697-0191.

Johnson Newspapers 7.1

(1) comment


So a man is beaten to the point of seizure while law enforcement personnel watch but no arrests are made?

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