SUNY Potsdam shooting: Beth Howell’s grieving mother says she spoke to daughter hours before her murder


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PATTERSON, N.Y. – The grieving mom of the State University of New York pupil who was gunned down simply steps from the faculty’s campus had spoken to her daughter simply hours earlier than the mindless, seemingly random attack, she informed Fox Information Digital on Tuesday.

Ann Howell spoke to Fox Information Digital from the household’s Patterson, New York, house simply days after her daughter, Elizabeth, or “Beth,” was killed over 4 hours away at SUNY Potsdam, the place she was ending her ultimate yr and planning to turn into a music instructor. 

“She was essentially the most wonderful daughter an individual may hope to have,” Howell stated from the entrance door of her house, which is nestled in a quiet, wooded neighborhood simply blocks from Putnam Lake. 


Beth was shot round 5:45 p.m. native time on Friday on Faculty Park Highway within the village of Potsdam, roughly 30 miles south of the Canadian border, officers have stated. She was solely toes from the campus of the Crane Faculty of Music, from which she was anticipated to graduate in mere months.


A SUNY spokesperson beforehand stated Snow had no connection to the varsity, however revealed Tuesday that Snow’s uncle is a Potsdam college member. The person didn’t reply to Fox Information Digital’s request for touch upon Tuesday.  

After the capturing, Beth fled a brief distance earlier than collapsing on the nook of Faculty Park Highway and East Drive, Potsdam Village Lt. Michael Ames subsequently introduced. 

Police stated witnesses noticed somebody fireplace three photographs from a grey-colored, four-door sedan. Investigators later recognized and the suspected gunman as 31-year-old Michael Snow. 


New York State Police (NYSP) executed a search warrant the subsequent day at Snow’s house in Massena – about 25 miles from the homicide scene. They arrested him on the Principal Avenue house and charged him with second-degree homicide. 


Ann Howell stated she had spoken to her daughter earlier that Friday, however wouldn’t go into element about their dialog. 

She stated her daughter liked music – she was an avid cellist who carried out with the Crane Symphony Orchestra – and loved dancing and swimming. She graduated from Brewster Excessive Faculty and had been a member of the Navy Junior Reserve Officers’ Coaching Corps. 

Howell stated the household would quickly be releasing an obituary for his or her 21-year-old daughter, however had discovered within the days for the reason that tragedy that Beth had impacted the neighborhood “greater than I spotted.” 

“We’re devastated,” she stated, “however we’re very grateful for the help that now we have from associates, household and the neighborhood.”

Elizabeth Howell was also a cellist who performed with the Crane Symphony Orchestra.

Elizabeth Howell was additionally a cellist who carried out with the Crane Symphony Orchestra.
(SUNY Potsdam )

Howell famous that her household had not launched any fundraising efforts. She requested that anybody who felt inclined to donate in Beth’s reminiscence contribute to the Danbury Music Centre, “as a result of that was a really huge a part of her life rising up.”

As for her alleged attacker, Howell stated she had heard from police and Beth’s associates that her daughter had “no connection” with Snow.

“She has a close-knit circle of associates there, and she or he’s a music main — she both hung out in school, or rehearsal, or practising, or together with her associates,” she stated. “There’s no connection.”

Snow was ordered held with out bail and is in custody of the St. Lawrence County Correctional Facility. He’s scheduled to seem in Potsdam City Court docket on Friday for a preliminary listening to, stated St. Lawrence County District Legal professional Gary Pasqua, whose workplace is prosecuting the case.

Pasqua additionally informed Fox Information Digital on Tuesday that his workplace had to date “discovered no connection” between Beth Howell and Snow. He requested the general public to achieve out if they’ve any data concerning Snow or his exercise on the day of the capturing.

“Given the circumstances, it appears to be like at this level like a random act. And one that might have been prevented, and one thing that we’re not used to seeing right here within the north nation,” he stated. “We’ll do our greatest to carry the person who dedicated this act to justice.”

Pasqua added that he has contacted the Howell household. 

As for Snow, Pasqua wouldn’t touch upon the suspect’s prison historical past or the existence of any sealed instances, aside from to say, “there aren’t any open instances” in opposition to him aside from for Howell’s homicide. 

The suspect, Michael Snow, 31, of Massena, NY, is charged with one count of murder 2nd degree in connection with the homicide. 

The suspect, Michael Snow, 31, of Massena, NY, is charged with one rely of homicide 2nd diploma in reference to the murder. 
(New York State Police)

In the meantime, a law-enforcement supply stated Snow had repeated contacts with the Massena Police Division.

NYSP has stated that Snow was driving a grey Honda Civic with New York license plate quantity KVE2731 on the day of the homicide. Between 5 p.m. and eight:30 p.m., the automotive drove by Potsdam, Hopkinton, Malone, Westville, Hogansburg and Massena – a route that may be a minimal of 75 miles.

Police are urging locals to evaluation any house or enterprise video surveillance for proof of Snow or his car within the hour previous to the capturing. The gray Honda has a broken driver’s aspect and an aftermarket mirror connected to the door, Ames stated.

Tom Mungeer, president of the New York State Troopers Police Benevolent Affiliation, stated Tuesday investigators have been doubtless seeking to create a timeline of Snow’s actions surrounding Friday’s alleged capturing.  

Mungeer, who is just not concerned within the investigation, stated troopers have been doubtless retaining releasing as little data as wanted “as a result of they wish to have an hermetic case.”

“This tragedy is a lack of harmless life,” he stated. “The second tragedy could be an error within the investigation which may let this man stroll.”


He added: “I do know the investigators are checking all avenues … in the long run, it’s anyone who’s working inside our society and ostensibly took an harmless life.”  

Investigators are asking anybody who might need seen Snow or the car to contact the NYSP Troop B communications at (518) 873-2750.

Fox Information’ Danielle Wallace and John Michael Raasch contributed to this report.


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