Police investigate death of missing woman in Richmond

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RICHMOND — The Vermont State Police is conducting an investigation into the death of a woman who had been reported missing on Friday in Richmond.

At approximately noon on Saturday, the crew of a Vermont Air National Guard helicopter located the body of Katie Hartnett, 25, from Burlington, in the Huntington River near 1498 Dugway Road.

The recovery operation was initiated by technical rescue teams on the ground and took about an hour to complete.

Hartnett’s body was transported to the Chief Medical Examiner’s Office in Burlington for an autopsy to confirm the cause and manner of death.

Preliminary investigation suggests that Hartnett had been visiting the Huntington River upstream of the Huntington Gorge on Friday afternoon when she reportedly slipped and fell into the water.

The search and recovery operation was carried out by approximately 40 individuals, including members from Colchester Technical Rescue, Stowe Technical Rescue, North Carolina Task Force 2 (a swift-water rescue team from Buncombe County in Vermont following the week’s widespread flooding), Richmond Rescue, the Vermont Department of Public Safety search and rescue coordinator, and VSP assets including the Unmanned Aircraft Systems Program, Field Force, Bureau of Criminal Investigations, and Victim Services Unit.

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