NYPD closes investigation on judge who washed up along Hudson River
The NYPD has concluded its investigation into the death of an appeals court judge who washed up along the Hudson River — though the case is not closed yet, officials said.
The Medical Examiner’s Office still has to determine exactly how Sheila Abdus-Salaam, 65, died before being found by police on April 12 near West 132nd Street.
The pioneering judge, who was the first black woman to serve on the state Court of Appeals, showed no visible signs of trauma or foul play when authorities pulled her from the river.
“We investigated as much as we could based on the information available,” a police official told The Post, citing reviews of Abdus-Salaam’s movements and interviews with people who knew her.
“The case is still open, pending a final determination by the ME,” the official said.
While the NYPD had initially believed that Abdus-Salaam had committed suicide, they announced last week that they would treat her death as suspicious.
Authorities still believe the judge took her own life, but sources said they won’t know for sure until the ME gives an official cause of death.
Surveillance videos taken on the day Abdus-Salaam was found show her wandering around Harlem for hours before she eventually makes her way to the river. In one clip, she can be seen standing several hundred feet from the water.
The footage was recorded at different locations between 131st and 141st streets, and showed Abdus-Salaam wearing the same clothes she had on when she died. Sources later told The Post that an autopsy found water in her lungs, suggesting she was alive when she went in the river.
Despite this, Abdus-Salaam’s husband, the Rev. Gregory Jacobs, has said online that he believes his wife would never take her own life.
“Those of us who loved Sheila and knew her well do not believe that these unfounded conclusions have any basis in reality,” he said in a statement last month.