Montgomery County

Police turn to forensics in Amsterdam stabbing deaths

Any arrest in the killings of two Amsterdam residents will hinge on results of forensic analysis, au

Any arrest in the killings of two Amsterdam residents will hinge on results of forensic analysis, authorities said last week.

There’s little information law enforcement officials will share regarding their probe into the March 2 stabbings of Cheryl Ann Goss and William B. McDermott.

Both were found dead with multiple stab wounds at McDermott’s apartment at 359 Locust Ave., a few blocks from the Amsterdam High School.

It happened in the northern end of the city, a residential area not known to be prone to crime.

Police early on said there was evidence of a struggle in the apartment, one of four in the multiunit home, but no evidence of forced entry. They said there were no drugs found in the residence.

Police spent weeks combing through the apartment, and the search for evidence took officers into the air for aerial photographs and into nearby waterways looking for a murder weapon.

Detectives were on rooftops in the neighborhood and canvassing a nearby park looking for clues a month after the murders as well.

Three months after the killings, Detective Lt. Kurt J. Conroy said calls with tips have stopped coming in and the fate of the investigation now rests in the hands of state police evidence analysts.

He considers the crime an “isolated incident,” meaning the victims were targeted, not killed by someone out to randomly stab people. The fact that there haven’t been any murders in the city since then supports that notion, he said.

Conroy would not say if there’s a prime suspect or people of interest in the case. “We have not eliminated anyone nor have we named anyone. We’ve just continued our investigation,” he said. But he expects developments in the case this summer.

Montgomery County District Attorney James “Jed” Conboy was equally optimistic but he too declined to comment on whether there are any prime suspects or people of interest in the case.

Conboy said forensics will be the key to the case’s resolution.

“The investigation is continuing with the submission of various pieces of evidence to the state police lab for DNA testing,” he said. “We are awaiting the results of that testing before moving forward, any further, with charges.”

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