ALBANY, N.Y. - The man accused of attempting to abduct two female University at Albany students near the Waterbury Hall bus stop on Friday has pleaded not guilty, but what has police now concerned is the possibility of the suspect's connection with to two university cold cases.
Anthony Collins, 54, pleaded not guilty in Albany City Court to felony Kidnapping and misdemeanor Menacing and Criminal Possession of a Weapon charges on Wednesday morning.
University Police Inspector Aran Mull tells NEWS10 ABC they are also looking Collins in connection to two University at Albany cold cases of missing women on record; the disappearances of Suzanne Lyall in 1998 and Karen Wilson in 1985.
"That was a concern that we had before we had even identified Mr. Collins, and it is something that we are looking into," Mull says.
Suzanne Lyall was last seen the night of March 2, 1998 when returning to the UAlbany campus from her part-time job. The Lyall family remains in the belief she was murdered.
"Suzies disappearance you know never leaves us. It's always right there under the surface," said the girls father, Doug Lyall.
He says police contacted him when they learned about the attempted abudtions.
"They're going to investigate this along with the Albany PD and SUNY PD."
"The question is there. Was this man in the area 15
years ago when Suzie was abducted?" said Suzanne's mother Mary Lyall.
Karen Wilson was a UAlbany senior who police say vanished from Central Avenue in Colonie in 1985. Through years of exhausting what few leads surfaced, investigators never stopped re-visiting the case.
Inspector Mull, with the University at Albany Police Department, says one of the victims of last week's incidents came forward on Tuesday, which allowed Collins to be charged with kidnapping. That victim is the one that stated Collins used a knife during the attempted abduction at the bus stop, near Western Avenue and Partridge Street, around 7:55 a.m. Friday. Police say the second victim, who Collins allegedly attempted to abduct around 8:30 a.m., has not come forward.
University Police say they were notified about the incidents on Monday by an email. Authorities are now working with the Albany Police Department, the Albany Crime Analysis Center and College of Saint Rose Public Safety to investigate the incident.
Patrols have also been increased in the area.
Collins has been remanded to jail without bail.
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