Woman dug up in Stockholm backyard was murdered, DA says
CANTON -- St. Lawrence County District Attorney Mary Rain says the investigation into the death of 84-year-old Betty Babcock of the May Road in Stockholm has led officials to conclude she was murdered.
After authorities noticed irregularities in the social services transactions of Babcock and her husband, Alvin, 86, police said Robert Bartlett, who lived with the Babcocks at 733 May Road along with his wife and mother, told them that he had buried the elderly couple in the yard but denied killing them.Days later, the bodies of the Babcocks were unearthed there, on March 19 and March 25.
Bartlett was subsequently charged with one count of welfare fraud and three counts of offering a false instrument for filing. Now, Rain says, additional charges will be filed.
Rain said that forensic pathologist Dr. Michael Sikirica declared the death of Betty Babcock a homicide.
The specific cause of death was not publicly revealed. Rain said she could not release more details because the investigation is still underway.
The cause of death of Alvin Babcock is still under investigation.
“This has been a complicated investigation and I commend the New York State Police on their investigation under extremely difficult and challenging conditions,” Rain said.
Additional charges will be filed, but Rain said that “because of the complexity of this case the entire file must be reviewed with law enforcement and Dr. Sikirica before filing additional charges.”