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NYSP investigator recognized for work during Waterloo murder investigation

  • / Updated:
  • Staff Report 

State Police investigator Derek Merritt has been recognized by his colleagues for his outstanding work in solving the shooting death of William Waugh in Seneca County last September.

The incident occurred on September 30th on State Route 96 in the Town of Waterloo.

RELATED: What led to Will Waugh’s death?

The Seneca County Sheriff’s Office, which initially investigated the case, discovered the vehicle driven by the suspects, but the gun used in the murder was not found. To aid in their investigation, the Sheriff’s Office obtained a search warrant for the suspect vehicle’s infotainment system and requested the assistance of the New York State Police.

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Troop E Computer Crime Unit Investigator Derek Merritt responded to assist the Seneca County Sheriff’s Office, and was able to download information from the vehicle’s infotainment system and provide a GPS track of the vehicle the night of the murder. Thanks to the information provided by Merritt, the sheriff’s office was able to quickly locate the murder weapon, which would not have been found without his expertise.

The State Police have acknowledged Merritt’s contributions, highlighting his use of his training and equipment from the National Computer Forensic Institute (NCFI). As a result of the investigation, two men – 36-year-old Christopher Kesterson of Phelps and 37-year-old Wayne Ellison Junior of Waterloo – have been charged with murder.