Husband pleads not guilty in 2009 slaying of wife found dead in NYC tub

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NEW YORK — The estranged husband of a finance executive who was found dead in her Manhattan bathtub has pleaded not guilty to murder, after more than five years of suspicions and questions about his wife’s death.

Roderick Covlin appeared briefly Monday. His lawyer, Robert Gottlieb said there can be no credible evidence, because his client did not kill Shele Covlin. She was found dead on New Year’s Eve 2009.

Investigators initially thought she had slipped and fallen. After her family objected to an autopsy for religious reasons, the cause of her death was listed as undetermined.

Her body was later exhumed with her family’s permission, and medical examiners concluded in April 2010 she had been strangled.

Accusations then began to swirl around Roderick Covlin in court papers over his wife’s estate and their divorce.