Who is Michael Snow? Man Arrested For Fatally Shooting SUNY Potsdam Student Elizabeth Howell; Police Find No Connection

Elizabeth Howell, a 21-year-old student, died after being shot multiple times in Northern New York. Howell, a cellist who performed with the Crane Symphony Orchestra, was a student at SUNY Potsdam's Crane School of Music.

According to New York State Police, the incident took place on Friday in the village of Potsdam.

elizabeth howell
elizabeth howell
Michael J. Snow (right) was charged with second-degree murder of Elizabeth Howell.

Howell's Death Mourned

The police said that medics found Howell unconscious from the gunshot wounds. The victim was taken to Canton Potsdam Hospital, but could not survive her injuries.

Speaking to the Daily News, Howell's mother Ann Howell said that her daughter was walking home from school. "She had an apartment off campus. She was only a hundred yards away, not even. She was right out that backdoor of the school, where she always walked home. She was going to meet some friends for dinner," said the mother.

SUNY Potsdam canceled classes for Monday and rescheduled various activities as it went on to mourn Howell's death. A memorial space was set up a the school's Crane School of Music for Howell. "Beth was a cellist who performed with the Crane Symphony Orchestra, and she was an aspiring educator with a bright future ahead of her. No words can express the sadness we share as a campus community following this tragic loss," the school officials tweeted.

Shooter Had No Affiliation With the School

The New York Post reported that the police arrested a 31-year-old man in connection with Howell's death, on Saturday. The man, identified as Michael J. Snow, is a resident of Massena, New York. He was charged with second-degree murder, according to the outlet.

Earlier, the police had sounded a public alert to trace Snow on Friday. He was seen driving a gray Honda Civic with New York license plate KVE2731 with damage to the driver's side door through Potsdam, Hopkinton, Malone, Westville, Hogansburg and Massena between during that time frame, police said.

The University has denied any affiliation between the alleged shooter and the college. "Snow has no past or present connection to SUNY Potsdam, either as a student, employee or graduate," a SUNY Potsdam spokeswoman said.

"The guy that they picked up for this, I don't think she even knew him," Howell's mother told Daily News. "It was in an area where there is nobody around really. ... She was the only one there so it could have just been that she walked into his line of vision." Snow was remanded to St. Lawrence County Jail without bail.

Join the Discussion
READ MORE