On Monday, March 20 at about 9:45 am New York State Police (NYSP) requested Forest Ranger assistance in an evidence search connected to a homicide investigation at Ausable Chasm in the town of Chesterfield, Essex County. When Rangers arrived, they were asked to recover the body of a homicide victim thrown more than 100 feet down the chasm.
Numerous Rangers rappelled down, found the victim, packaged their body, and used a technical rope system to return the victim to the top of the cliff.
NYSP identified the victim as 37-year-old Kenneth Darrah from Keeseville, NY, who was found on the north side riverbank.
An investigation determined a physical altercation occurred on the AuSable Chasm Bridge in which Darrah was stabbed and thrown off the bridge.
On March 21, 2023, State Police arrested Michael J. Rougeau, 48, and Michael A. Nastasia, 30, for second degree murder.
Before darkness fell, Forest Rangers spent hours scaling the cliff looking for evidence in the case. Anything found was turned over NYSP.
Photos provided by the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation.
Edythe Ann Quinn says
This violent crime report brings to my mind a ballad by Christopher Shaw, Adirondack folksinger. On his album, BORN & RAISED, in “Wheeler Barton’s Hound,” Chris sings of a long ago homicide with the thieving murderer dumping the body into a chasm. In that case, there was no need for state police or forest rangers as Barton’s loyal and ferocious hound found revenge and gnawed on the bones of the killer.