MINEOLA, N.Y. – Nassau County District Attorney Madeline Singas announced that a Lynbrook man was arraigned today on grand jury indictment charges for the attempted murder of a former business partner in front of her Long Beach home in December 2016
Ralph Keppler, 27, was arraigned today before Acting Supreme Court Justice Patricia Harrington on charges of Attempted Murder in the Second Degree (a B violent felony), two counts of Assault in the First Degree (a B violent felony) and Criminal Possession of a Weapon in the Fourth Degree (an A misdemeanor). The defendant is due back in court February 26 and bail was set at $1,000,000 bond or $500,000 cash. If convicted of the top count, the defendant faces up to five years to 25 years in prison.
“Theresa Kiel was robbed of all quality of life when this defendant allegedly shattered her skull with a metal barbell as she walked to her Long Beach apartment,” DA Singas said. “This barbaric attack, allegedly motivated by a business dispute and perpetrated by a man employed as a corrections officer, has left Ms. Kiel in a persistent vegetative state, and prosecutors in my office are committed to holding this defendant accountable.”
DA Singas said on Sunday December 4, 2016 at approximately 10:30 p.m., Theresa Kiel was walking towards her apartment door at 5 New York Avenue in Long Beach.
The victim was inside the entrance corridor to the apartment complex when she was attacked and struck several times on the head and face with a metal barbell. Kiel suffered a shattered skull, depressed right eye and lost teeth.
The victim was transported to South Nassau Communities Hospital and is currently in a vegetative state at a rehabilitation facility. She has lost her right eye.
The defendant and Kiel were involved in a business dispute at the time of the attack.
Keppler, who worked as a New York City correction officer, was arrested at Rikers Island by members of the Long Beach Police Department on January 24, 2018.
The defendant has been fired by the Department of Correction.
Deputy Bureau Chief Veronica Guariglia of DA Singas’ Special Operations, Narcotics and Gangs Bureau is prosecuting the case. The defendant is represented by Marc Gann, Esq.
The charges are merely accusations and the defendant is presumed innocent until and unless found guilty.