The first African-American woman to serve on New York’s highest court as well as the country’s first female Muslim judge, Sheila Abdus-Salaam, died by drowning in April. According to the New York City medical examiner, the very accomplished woman intentionally killed herself by drowning.
The coroner’s office confirmed its findings in a statement Wednesday, reported New York Daily News.
Abdus Salaam’s fully clothed body was found floating in the Hudson River on April 12 after her family reported her missing.
Police obtained security video that showed her walking the streets of Harlem on the night she disappeared.
On April, 20, Abdus-Salaam’s husband, the Rev. Gregory Jacobs, who reported his wife missing, dismissed reports that she committed suicide.
“Those of us who loved (Sheila) and knew her well do not believe that these unfounded conclusions have any basis in reality,” Jacobs said.
Abdus-Salaam, 65, was appointed to the state Court of Appeals in 2013. Before that, she served as a Manhattan Supreme Court judge for 14 years, and worked as an attorney with East Brooklyn Legal Services Corp., the city Law Department and the city Office of Labor Services.