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Rollover fatality leads to manslaughter charge against driver


GREENPORT—The man who was driving the pickup truck that crashed and burned on Church Road, December 27 resulting in the death of Scott A. Fenoff, 40, of Livingston will be charged with felony second degree vehicular manslaughter by State Police.

A Greenport town justice signed a warrant authorizing the arrest of Nicholas C. Howard, 20, of Livingston, the driver, who is currently in the Columbia County Jail after a strange turn of events following the crash.

State Police from Livingston were called to the scene of a one-vehicle crash on Church Road in the vicinity of Gardner Road at about 2:30 a.m. Friday. Their preliminary investigation revealed that a 2001 Ford F-150 pickup truck was traveling west on Church Road when the operator, Mr. Howard, lost control of the truck, which went off the south shoulder of the road. The truck rolled over several times before becoming engulfed in flames. Police believe that speed played a factor in the crash.

Mr. Fenoff, a passenger in the pickup, was ejected from the vehicle and died of injuries he suffered in the crash.

Mr. Howard was taken to the Albany Medical Center for treatment of non-life threatening injuries.

After Mr. Howard was discharged from AMC Friday, he was interviewed by police about his role in the fatal crash. No charges were filed at that time and he was released to his family pending the outcome of the crash investigation, State Police said in a press release Saturday, December 28.

Sometime later, troopers saw Mr. Howard operating a motor vehicle in the area of the crash scene on Church Road. Troopers interviewed him and discovered he was driving the vehicle in an intoxicated condition.

He provided a breath sample which yielded a blood alcohol content of .09%.

Mr. Howard was arraigned in Livingston Court on a driving while intoxicated charge and committed to the Columbia County Jail in lieu of $10,000 cash bail. The vehicular manslaughter warrant has been lodged at the jail. Mr. Howard is due to appear in Greenport Court January 13. The accident was reconstructed by the State Police Collision Reconstruction Unit. The State Police Bureau of Criminal Investigation in Livingston and uniform members continue to investigate the crash.

*Tanner J. Rivenburgh, 18, of Greenport was charged with fourth degree criminal mischief, class A misdemeanor by Sergeant William Zincio, December 10 at 6 p.m. Mr. Rivenburgh is accused of breaking two doors at a private residence in Greenport. He was arraigned in Greenport Court and released on his own recognizance to return to court at a later date.


Helena M. Hamm, 46, of Hudson was charged with tampering with physical evidence (conceal/destroy) and on warrants for second degree hindering prosecution, criminal possession of a controlled substance, unlawful possession of marijuana by Hudson Police Officers Brent Rowe and Jacob Hoffman, III, at 852 Columbia Street and the police station, November 25 at 7:28 p.m.

Ms. Hamm allegedly took Ernest Hartfield, who Hudson Police were about to arrest, out of Columbia Memorial Hospital in a wheelchair and still in his hospital gown to a waiting car before he was officially released, according to Hudson Police Chief Ed Moore.

Police were waiting to charge Mr. Hartfield in connection with a November 20 incident in which he allegedly fled police in his vehicle and crashed into a house at 3 Worth Avenue.

He suffered a severely broken leg in the crash. A hospital x-ray technician was also charged in connection with Mr. Hartfield’s hasty exit.

It is also alleged that Ms. Hamm left the hospital in such a hurry that she left a cocaine pipe behind in the hospital room.

After police took Ms. Hamm into custody on the warrants at the Columbia Street address they took her to the police station and subsequently found a glass crack stem on the floor in the rear of the patrol car. Ms. Hamm allegedly attempted to dispose of the item in an attempt to conceal the evidence, said the chief.

She was arraigned in Hudson City Court before Judge John Connors and sent to the Columbia County Jail in lieu of $2,000 cash bail or $4,000 bond.

Ms. Hamm was also subsequently charged on a warrant for seventh degree criminal possession of a controlled substance and second degree possession of contraband, both class A misdemeanors, by Deputy Bernard Roberts November 28 at 1:18 p.m. She was arraigned in Greenport Court and released on her own recognizance. She was scheduled to return to court at a later date.

*Carl A. Williams, 18, of Hudson was charged with third degree assault (with intent to cause physical injury), fourth degree grand larceny (credit card) and second degree robbery (causes physical injury) by Hudson Police Officer Christopher Duntz at 192 Harry Howard Avenue, December 4 at 11:50 a.m.

Mr. Williams was charged on an active Hudson City Court arrest warrant. He allegedly punched a victim in the face multiple times and stole his wallet on the 400 block of State Street, December 2.

Mr. Williams was arraigned and sent to the Columbia County Jail in lieu of $7,500 cash bail or $15,000 bond. He was to return to Hudson City Court at a later date.

*Christopher D. Rowan, 26, of Craryville was charged with fourth degree criminal mischief (intent to damage property), endangering the welfare of a child and second degree harassment (physical/repeated) by Hudson Police Officer Christopher Duntz at 723 Columbia Street, December 7 at 5:49 p.m.

Mr. Rowan allegedly attempted to punch the victim and ripped his jacket. These actions took place in the presence of the victim’s young child. Mr. Rowan was arraigned in Livingston Court and sent to the county jail in lieu of $2,500 cash bail or $5,000 bond.

*Rhymondo C. Williams, 16, of Hudson was charged with third degree assault (with intent to cause physical injury) by Hudson Detective John Funk, Jr., at the police station, December 12 at 11:58 a.m.

The defendant allegedly punched the victim in the back of the head causing him to fall to the ground, November 8. He then allegedly continued to punch him in the face several times causing pain to the back of his head and neck as well as bleeding and swelling from the nose and face.

Rhymondo was issued an appearance ticket returnable in Hudson City Court January 7.

*Ashley J. Hartka, 42, of Hudson was charged with endangering the welfare of a child, class A misdemeanor, by Deputy Christopher Link, December 2 at 4:28 p.m. She was issued an appearance ticket returnable in Greenport Court January 6.


Ashley N. Richardson, 28, of Kinderhook was charged with unauthorized use of a motor vehicle, a class A misdemeanor, by State Police from Kinderhook, December 22 at 6:35 p.m.

Troopers were dispatched to investigate a complaint alleging that Richardson took a family member’s vehicle without permission.

She was arraigned in Kinderhook Town Court and remanded to Columbia County Jail in lieu of $500 cash bail. She is due to re-appear in court January 7.

To contact Diane Valden email

Pull over, Santa

Santa Claus made an early stop at the Livingston State Police barracks Saturday afternoon, December 7 for the 12th annual Holiday Open House. Santa arrived in the barracks parking lot in a horse-drawn wagon. Dozens of area children and their families were there to greet him. Santa took some Christmas requests from the youngsters. Since 2002, State Police from Livingston and members of the community have come together to collect toys and holiday cheer for Columbia County families in need. The gifts were distributed to local families in time for Christmas.

Program helps children ride safely

GREENPORT—Child Passenger Safety Technicians from the Columbia County Sheriff’s Office and Columbia County Department of Health recently took an opportunity to thank the owners and staff of Cantele Tent Rentals for their support of the county’s Child Passenger Safety Seat Program. For many years, Cantele Tent Rentals has donated large tents for the inspection events, providing shelter for vehicle occupants and child safety seat technicians when conducting inspections, according to a press release from now former Sheriff David Harrison, Jr.

The program’s success is attributed to the grant program itself, as well as the collaboration between the Sheriff’s Office and Health Department. A total of 206 safety seats have been inspected and replaced by the grant program.

Child seats are provided, while supplies last, to low-income families who need them and meet guidelines set by the Governor’s Traffic Safety Committee. Guidelines that must be met before a child safety seat is provided:

•Applicant must have his or her vehicle present

•Applicant must meet income eligibility requirements

•Applicant must receive education on child passenger safety

•Applicant must complete the manufacturer’s warranty card.

An applicant must sign an agreement and waiver of liability form. To contact a certified child passenger safety technician call 518 828-3358 X 1293 for more information or visit the Columbia County Sheriff’s Office website at


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