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News

Man Sentenced To Prison For Hit-Run Death In Area

An Orange County man was sentenced to prison in connection with a deadly hit-and-run case.
An Orange County man was sentenced to prison in connection with a deadly hit-and-run case.

A 38-year-old Orange County man was sentenced to one to three years in prison in connection with the death of a woman who was hit while walking in the town of Mount Hope.

Stephen Grundel, 38, of Wallkill, was sentenced Monday, Sept. 9, after pleading guilty to leaving the scene of an incident that took place around 1115 p.m., March 30, said the Orange County District Attorney's Office.

The woman, Kiera Babcock of Otisville, was killed when Grundel, driving eastbound in 2000 Silverado pickup truck struck her, state police said.

Babcock’s body was found the following morning by a passing motorist.

A phone tip on April 6 led state police to interview Grundel. In that interview, Grundel provided an alibi that did not fit with information developed from other interviews and video surveillance, state police said.

At the time that Grundel pleaded guilty, he admitted that he knew he had struck a person, but that he failed to stop the truck to see who he had struck and left the scene without either looking to see who he had struck or by calling the police, the DA's Office said.

District Attorney David Hoovler thanked the New York State Police and Town of Mount Hope Police Department for their investigation and the arrest of Grundel, as well as the New York State Police Collision Reconstruction Unit for their analysis of the crime scene.

“The state prison sentence that my office recommended, and which the judge issued, was clearly appropriate since the defendant left a severely injured and dying woman in the roadway, in the cold, and in the dark, without alerting the police, or calling for help," he said.

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