Reward Set at $50,000 in East Hampton Homicide Case

Timothy J. Liston, State’s Attorney for the Judicial District of Middlesex, and Chief Matthew A. Reimondo of the East Hampton Police Department announced today that Governor M. Jodi Rell has authorized an increase in the reward for information leading to the arrest and conviction of the person or persons responsible for the death of Gertrude (Trudy) Ochankowski to an amount not to exceed $50,000, the maximum allowed by law. State’s Attorney Liston and Chief Reimondo expressed their appreciation to Governor Rell for her action and her continued commitment to the victims of crime and their families.

Gertrude Ochankowski was a long time resident of East Hampton. She is survived by two loving daughters and is fondly remembered by her family and friends. Trudy Ochankowski was last seen alive on January 11, 1998. Her motor vehicle was found running in front of 82 Main Street, East Hampton, where she had patronized a Laundromat. On the afternoon of January 12, 1998, Ms. Ochankowski’s body was found in a stream off Tartia Road in East Hampton. An autopsy was performed by Chief Medical Examiner H. Wayne Carver, II, M.D., who determined that the cause of death was strangulation.

An intensive investigation was conducted by the East Hampton Police Department with the assistance of the Connecticut State Police Eastern District Major Crime Squad and the Department of Public Safety Forensic Science Laboratory. East Hampton Police devoted countless hours and resources to the investigation and continue to vigorously pursue any leads. Ms. Ochankowski’s daughters also went to great lengths to determine who was responsible for their mother’s senseless death. Despite all of these efforts no arrest has been made.

As the tenth anniversary of Ms. Ochankowski’s unsolved homicide approached, State’s Attorney Liston applied to Governor Rell for an increase in the Offer of Reward from the $30,000 authorized in December 2000. State’s Attorney Liston and Chief Reimondo believe that the increase in the reward will renew public interest and awareness of the tragic death of Ms. Ochankowski and that individuals with information will be prompted to come forward.

The public is advised not to underestimate the significance of what they may know and not to assume that law enforcement must already possess that information. Sometimes a small piece of information may be the key to assist investigators to solve a case and to achieve a successful prosecution. Anyone with information is urged to contact the East Hampton Police Department at 20 High Street, East Hampton, CT 06424; telephone number (860) 267-9922 or (860) 267-9544; fax number (860) 267-4208.