Why was Alex Rideout denied an early release? Transcripts give insight

July 30, 2019 11:21 PM

ROCHESTER, N.Y. (WHEC) -- State corrections officials were not impressed by the rehabilitation progress of Alex Rideout who was convicted of tampering with evidence in the murder of his father, Craig Rideout. 

Transcripts obtained by News10NBC give new insight as to why Alex was denied a "merit release" in a hearing before a corrections panel last month. 


"He was defensive and defiant. I see it. I can hear it," declared Robbyn Drew, sister of Craig Rideout.

Craig Rideout was found dead in the woods in Yates County in 2016. His wife Laura and his son Colin were convicted of murder and sentenced to life in prison.

Alex was convicted of tampering with evidence for helping clean up and hide evidence and later sentenced to between 2 2/3 and 8 years.

He'll be eligible for parole next year.    

On June 11, Alex Rideout, now 22, was interviewed by a panel of corrections commissioners and parole officers at the Greene Correctional Facility in Albany. According to transcripts from the meeting, he talked about his training and work at the prison's print shop.

He also appeared to say he was sorry for his role in his father's death saying, "I'll have to live with what I did. You know, I'm going to have to carry that till the day I die."

"He said he's sorry but I think it's just words," Drew retorted as she looked over his comments, "and he certainly hasn't expressed any regret to me, or his grandmother."

Under questioning about the murder, and his role in trying to cover it up, Alex said, "It was not the right thing to do. But I'm going to tell you honestly that at that time, I thought I was doing the right thing."

In their finding, the hearing panel said Alex's comments were defensive and vague and seemed to deflect responsibility, as when he said of the murder, "Anyone could have done it. So it could have been one of my younger siblings…  I still don't know three years later."

The transcripts reveal that Alex also resurrected the implication from his trial that Craig Rideout had been an abusive father, saying "There's some days where I miss him and then there's some days where I'm just really glad he's not there to hurt my sister anymore." 

"Here it is again," Drew exclaimed, pointing out that no abuse was ever established and that the argument was rejected during the trial of Alex Rideout and his co-defendentants. "A lot of twists and turns. No remorse: 'I did it for my family but I was wrong …but I wasn't wrong… I was protecting my family…' just a lot of doubletalk."

Having failed to get an early merit release, Alex will formally be eligible for parole next March.

Drew promised that she and her entire family would be writing letters to the state Department of Corrections and Community Supervision urging that he stay locked up.  


Charles Molineaux

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