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Stepdaughters charged with bludgeoning woman

SCHODACK, N.Y. -- Two sisters who originally told police they discovered the mutilated body of their stepmother in her living room have been arrested for allegedly bludgeoning the woman to death, authorities said Friday.

Lisa Finkle, 24, and Laura Finkle, 19, were arraigned Thursday night on charges of second-degree murder for allegedly stabbing stepmother Carole Finkle and clobbering her over the head with a wrench after an argument.

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The two sisters originally reported that they found their stepmother dead and lying in a pool of blood Wednesday afternoon in her home in suburban Schodack, about 10 miles east of Albany.

But investigators, after talking to the women's friends and finding the apparent murder weapons, concluded Thursday that the sisters had killed their stepmother.

'The defendants were arrested after an intensive investigation by the State Police, Schodack Police and the Rensselaer County district attorney's office,' said Edward Dyer, a State Police spokesman.

'The crime appears to have resulted from an argument between the defendants and the victim at the residence just prior to the murder,' he said.

The stepmother, a waitress at a diner in the nearby town of Colonie, was married to Peter Finkle, the defendants' father.

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News of the grisly murder stunned the Schodack neighborhood where the Finkles had lived for 10 years after getting married.

Police said Finkle died as a result of the bludgeoning to her head which crushed her skull in several places. An autopsy showed that the woman had also been stabbed several times. is not intended for teletypsetters requiring imbedded justification.)

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