HILLSDALE, N.Y. - The Columbia County Sheriff's Department has confirmed that the victim of the Sunday night Hillsdale murder died of manual strangulation.
73-year-old Lois Decker was found murdered in her home at 18 Cold Water Street in the Village of Hillsdale after officers went to her home to talk with her during the investigation of a one car rollover accident.
21-year-old Shafiqul Islam, of Hudson, had stolen and crashed Decker's 2006 Hyundai Accent on Route 23 in Claverack around 6:42 p.m. on Sunday.
After crashing Decker's car, Islam then fled the scene and stole a 2011 Ford F-150 pickup truck from a nearby garage, which he was later seen driving in the City of Hudson. He was arrested and taken into custody at that time.
Islam is charged with Criminal Possession of Stolen Property 3rd-degree, and is currently a suspect in Decker's murder.
Decker was taken to St. Peter's Hospital in Albany where the autopsy was done.
The State Police Forensic Unit has completed their processing of the Decker residence and at this time the house has been released by the Sheriff's Office to the family.
Sheriff's Office Crime Scene Technicians continue their examination of the vehicles involved in the case which have been secured at the Sheriff's Office.
Anyone with information is asked to contact the Sheriff's Office at 518-828-3344.
Decker's obituary can be seen here.