Schenectady County

Police accuse man of attempted rape

An Albany man has been arrested on charges of picking up women in Schenectady and holding them again

An Albany man has been arrested on charges of picking up women in Schenectady and holding them against their will in Rotterdam and attempting to rape one of them, police said Thursday.

Joseph H. Kruppenbacher, 62, of 15 Besch Ave., Albany, was charged with three counts of first-degree false imprisonment and one count of first-degree attempted rape, felonies.

Kruppenbacher is accused of picking up three women in Schenectady since January, taking each to Rotterdam and refusing to let them leave his vehicle, police department spokesman Lt. Jason Murphy said.

“At some point, they decided they didn’t want to remain with him and he made it apparent that he would not let them go,” Murphy said.

The first report of an incident came on Jan. 13. A woman said she was picked up and taken to Duanesburg Road. She ultimately jumped out of the moving vehicle, suffering scrapes in the process.

The second report was Feb. 5, when another woman described a similar incident. This time, however, she escaped when the vehicle was stopped. She fled in the area of Altamont Avenue.

The last incident was reported Tuesday, on Becker Drive. In that incident, the woman reported she was tied up and that Kruppenbacher attempted to rape her. She, too, however, was able to escape, Murphy said.

Murphy declined to say how police narrowed their search to Kruppenbacher or what information the third woman was able to provide that led them to Kruppenbacher.

Murphy also declined to say how police believe Kruppenbacher may have chosen the women. He said, however, police do not believe there are other victims.

Kruppenbacher was arrested Wednesday on Madison Avenue in Albany. He was arraigned in Rotterdam Town Court and ordered held at the Schenectady County Jail.

Kruppenbacher is listed on several Web sites as a member of an Albany-area chess club. A phone number connected to his listing is also connected to the address police gave for him.

In 2006, he was quoted in a Daily Gazette article attempting to get chess boards placed in parks around the region.

A woman answering the phone at the number listed for him Thursday afternoon said she was aware of some of the accusations, but declined to comment further.

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