Videos Show NY Judge Walking Alone for Hours Before Death

Authorities still trying to piece together what happened to Sheila Abdus-Salaam
By Michael Harthorne,  Newser Staff
Posted Apr 22, 2017 11:25 AM CDT
Videos Reveal Final Hours of New York Judge's Life
Security cameras around Manhattan are helping authorities piece together the final hours of Judge Sheila Abdus-Salaam's life.   (AP Photo/Mike Groll, File)

Security cameras around Manhattan captured the final hours of Judge Sheila Abdus-Salaam's life as authorities continue trying to piece together what happened to the first African-American woman to sit on the New York Court of Appeals, the Los Angeles Times reports. Prior to the discovery of the videos, the last sighting of Abdus-Salaam, who was found dead in the Hudson River April 12, was at 10am April 11, according to the New York Daily News. She had told her assistant she was sick and not coming into work. The videos show her walking quickly alone in sweats and sneakers—by all appearances she could be exercising. The New York Times reports the videos show Abdus-Salaam walking for hours in Riverbank State Park. The last video is her standing by the water's edge shortly after midnight April 12.

While police have labeled Abdus-Salaam's death suspicious, they still believe it's most likely she killed herself, saying she was possibly depressed or distraught about the deaths of her mother and brother, which occurred around the Easter holiday in recent years. But Abdus-Salaam's husband says she wasn't suicidal and wouldn't have killed herself. And while signs point to the 65-year-old judge being alive when she went into the Hudson River, she did have bruises on her neck. Authorities say she may have been choked in the hours or days before she died. However, it's possible the bruises were created when her body was removed from the river. The medical examiner's office still hasn't issued a cause of death. (More Sheila Abdus-Salaam stories.)

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