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Ohio couple being held in Plattsburgh for 2016 child murder


By Kelly O'Brien

PLATTSBURGH, N.Y. (WCAX) - A couple is behind bars in Plattsburgh after being arrested Tuesday for the 2016 alleged murder of their child in Ohio.

Police say 51-year-old Katherine Snyder and 51-year-old John Snyder II moved to Clinton County sometime after 2017 and sold their home in 2021. The sheriff’s department says the couple was taken into custody after they were believed to be visiting friends or family in the area.

“We don’t have the exact dates as to how long they were here. We just know that they had routine contact with the people they were visiting up here. So, we took an opportunity to surveil them,” said Clinton County Sheriff David Favro.

Favro says he was contacted by the Springfield Township Police Department in Ohio saying they believed the couple was in the county and that a warrant was out for their arrest in the 2016 death of their adopted child.

“After they gave us the information, we conducted a reconnaissance mission with some of our members did locate them in the area. We believe they were only here visiting, They don’t have any permanent residency here,” Favro said.

According to court paperwork from Hamilton County Court in Ohio, The Snyders are facing 26 charges including murder and child endangerment. The couple had five adopted children and one biological one.

One of those adopted children -- an eight-year -- died from blunt force trauma and the death was ruled a homicide. The couple -- using experts -- argued unsuccessfully in court that the death was from blood poisoning by bacteria.

Authorities say the other five children were severely malnourished with signs of physical abuse but have since recovered and are safe. The Snyders had no children with them when they were arrested.

Sheriff Favro says his department had no encounters with the Snyders while they lived in the area. He says it’s unclear if the couple was hiding out in the county. “I really would hate to go out on a limb and do that but obviously it’s pretty easy to hide out here and I also think because of the close nexus to the border -- you know, they are 20 minutes away from Canada if they really need to be.”

Favro says they are waiting to learn if the couple will be extradited to Ohio, a process that could take anywhere from a week to a month. Until then, they will remain in the Clinton County Jail.

2022 Sep 28