A daughter and her boyfriend have been charged with murder in the savage beating death of a Long Island mother, who succumbed to her injuries on Saturday, nearly two years after the attack.
In December 2016, 56-year-old Theresa Kiel was allegedly beaten with a barbell so brutally that she lost an eye and “her skull was left partially collapsed,” NBC New York reports, adding that the attack “left her in a persistent vegetative state.”
Lynbrook couple, Ralph Keppler & Francesca Kiel- charged with the beating death of the girlfriend’s mother- Long Beach, Long Island, NY woman Theresa Kiel. Had remained in vegetative state following 2016 bashing. https://t.co/01IIGCrRxN
— Scallywagandvagabond (@ScallywagNYC) November 13, 2018
“She was hit several times about the head with a barbell, which caused severe injuries to her head and the loss of her right eye,” Nassau County Police Det. Lt. Stephen Fitzpatrick told ABC 7.
Charged in the victim’s slaying are her own daughter, 21-year-old Francesca Kiel, and the daughter’s boyfriend, 27-year-old Ralph Keppler, a former corrections officer. The duo is charged with second-degree murder in the case, according to the news station.
As to a motive, officials said the three had been collaborating on the creation of a dating app, but the project had not been working out. Keppler was apparently taking Theresa, a former teacher, to court over $65,000 that he reportedly invested in the app. Instead of investing the money into the app, Keppler reportedly said the beating victim wasted away the cash, along with her son, by indulging in such things as “weight loss surgery,” and “bicep enhancement surgery,” the New York Post reports, citing court documents.
The suspects are currently being held without bail.
[Feature image: Ralph Keppler and Francesca Kiel/Nassau County Police]