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Questions Linger after Larchmont Family’s Public Tragedy

Catherine Youssef Kassenoff/Facebook

Following the assisted suicide in Switzerland by Catherine Kassenoff, the Larchmont mother of three, and continued public outcry over her alleged treatment at the hands of her estranged husband and the courts during an on-going divorce and custody battle, the law firm of Greenberg Traurig announced Allan Kassenoff has resigned from the firm effective immediately.

Catherine Kassenoff, the mother of their three daughters, aged 9, 12 and 13, a former Special Counsel in the Governor’s office, who was active in the community, including volunteering on the Larchmont Environmental Committee, and who had cancer, had emailed supporters saying that she chose assisted suicide in Switzerland rather than living with the “unbearable pain” of being unable to see her children during her four-year divorce and custody dispute while terminally ill, according to reports.

Kassenoff blamed her estranged husband and the Westchester County court system for unfair rulings, favoritism and forensic evaluations by a “predatory” court system and officers of the court with conflicts of interests.

The case has been widely covered by the media. A comprehensive timeline of this case was written by Investigative Journalist Frank Parlato.

In a letter posted to Facebook on May 27, she announced she would die by assisted suicide in Switzerland. While the 54-year-old admitted in her post that her cancer prognosis was “dire,” she blamed exhaustion in the face of an ongoing legal battle that left her without the legal right to see her daughters for the decision to stop fighting a protracted medical battle.

“Perhaps if I had the physical endurance to keep going, I would,” the attorney, who once served as special counsel to New York Governor Kathy Hochul, wrote. “I cannot survive this torment and the grief that comes from such a prolonged separation from my children. The court system did this to me … It is a predatory system that functions in darkness.”

Kassenoff also directed her Facebook followers to a Dropbox link where she made available evidence to back up her claims, including court documents, medical records and video recordings. The link has since been disabled.

Greenberg Traurig, where Allan Kasselhoff was a patent litigator and shareholder, said in a statement, “After lengthy trials and reviewing all the facts, including some videos, none of the 4 judges who presided over the trials or the 2 court-appointed neutral forensic evaluators found him to have committed wrongdoing or abuse as to his children or the contended domestic violence, and instead awarded him sole legal and physical custody of their three children. Nevertheless, the firm will be conducting its own investigation to determine his status with the firm.”

On Sunday, the firm announced that it had completed the investigation and that Kassenoff has resigned from the firm effective immediately.

A celebration of Catherine Kassenoff’s life was held at Stanz Café in Larchmont June 5.
Polly Kreisman
Polly Kreisman
Polly Kreisman founded and began publishing theLoop in 2007. She is a 15-time Emmy Award winning former television reporter. In New York she worked at WPIX TV, WWOR TV, WNBC TV and NY1. She covered politics on Capitol Hill in Washington DC earlier in her career. For the past several years she has pursued professional acting roles in film, television and commercials. She is the mother of twins and two baldly behaved dogs, and lives in Larchmont.

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Susie Sampierre
Susie Sampierre
February 23, 2024 8:57 AM

Great article Polly. Incredibly sad. Their house always stood out to me as very dark energy.

Valrie Walton
June 14, 2023 9:57 PM

How is this Fair?? how would some judge be that cruel as to take away a woman’s right to see her children after hard pregnancy the chance of positive child birth? I tell you monetary funds passed hands for these things to happen

Carol Gill
Carol Gill
June 14, 2023 10:47 AM

Heartbreaking for all concerned especially the children!

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