KINDERHOOK — A planned rally for an alleged assault victim who was injured in an incident nearly two weeks ago at the home of Columbia County Sheriff’s Deputy Kelly Rosenstrach was called off Friday, according to a village official.
Kinderhook village officials were uncertain early Friday that a rally in support of Harold Handy would go forward Saturday, Mayor James Dunham said.
The planned event, set to take place in the village square, was canceled at the request of the family, Village Clerk Nicole Heeder said later in the day Friday.
Kinderhook Village Square was the scene of a Black Lives Matter rally July 11 and a Back the Blue rally on June 18.
June’s Back the Blue rally was organized by ClubLife Health & Fitness owner Alex Rosenstrach, at whose home the alleged Fourth of July assault took place. Alex Rosenstrach is married to Sheriff’s Deputy Kelly Rosenstrach, who was put on administrative leave July 9 pending an investigation into the alleged assault.
A search warrant was executed at the Rosenstrach home at 3193 County Route 21 on July 7, but few other details have emerged about the ongoing investigation led by the Columbia County Sheriff’s Office with assistance from the state police.
“The investigation is very active,” Sheriff’s Office spokesman Lt. Louis Bray said Friday. “Alongside the state police we are working very hard to conclude this investigation as soon as possible and as thoroughly as possible.”
Bray declined further comment, except to say that “nothing has changed” in regard to the sheriff department’s July 9 statement that that no deputy sheriffs except for Kelly Rosenstrach were present at the Rosenstrach home at the time of the incident.
State police denied that any of its members were present at the gathering at the Rosenstrach home.
“There were no state troopers at the residence, period,” State Police Director of Public Information Beau Duffy said Friday.
The sheriff’s office remains the lead agency investigating the assault, with assistance from the state Police Special Investigations Unit, Duffy said.
Duffy declined to provide the number of state police involved in the investigation and declined to say why he could not provide those numbers.
As plans ramped up for the now-scratched rally, the village of Kinderhook announced it would require all protesters to obtain permission to use the village square.
“As of today, the village of Kinderhook is requiring that all uses of the village square require the submission of an application for the use of village property,” Dunham wrote Friday in an email to village residents.
Village approval is required to avoid conflicts with “previously approved uses of the village square,” including the Saturday farmers market, Dunham said.
Planned gatherings and demonstrations on village streets also require prior approval, Dunham wrote.
The mayor included a copy of the application in his email to village residents Friday.
The purpose of the application is to ensure that the village can coordinate with organizers, Dunham said.
“This is to keep things safe and peaceful,” he said.
Dunham said the village has always notified state police and the sheriff’s office of planned events in the village square, but that there was “never a need” for law enforcement until a gun appeared during the Black Lives Matter rally July 11.