22-Year-Old Newlywed Hacked To Death With Machete On New Years Day

Dollar Tree Murder
Left: Bethel Bekele, 27, is charged with murder (Upper Sandusky Police Department). Right: Keris L. Riebel and her husband on their wedding day.

January 4, 2023

An Ohio man has been charged with murder after attacking a Dollar Tree employee with a machete, according to police. 

Officers in Upper Sandusky received a call on January 1 at 4:25 p.m. after a man, now identified as 27-year-old Bethel M. Bekele, was spotted waving a machete and striking an employee, according to a press release from Upper Sandusky Police Department.

Bekele reportedly left the store before officers arrived. But when officers finally arrived on the scene they found 22-year-old Keris L. Riebel deceased. One officer responded to the call with Wyandot County EMS while the other patrolled the area for the suspect. 

“Bekele entered the store with the machete, approached Riebel, and struck her numerous times with the machete,” according to Police Chief Jared Lucas. 

(READ MORE: Brooklyn Subway Shooter Pleads Guilty)

Bekele was found on the 100 block of South Fifth Street where he was detained for further investigation. The police chief said that after the murder Bekele drove to Wyandot County Sheriff’s Office. Deputies reportedly approached him and he surrendered to them. 

The Ohio Bureau of Criminal Investigation and detectives with the Wyandot County Major Crimes Unit also responded to process the scene and begin investigations. 

Keris L. Riebel was newly married, according to a GoFundMe set up to cover her funeral, burial, and her husband’s lost wages from taking time off. Riebel had recently graduated college. She is from Nevada, about 15 minutes away from Upper Sandusky. 

Bekele, who is currently being held in Wood County jail in Bowling Green, has no criminal record, according to Dayton 24/7 Now. Police are investigating the relationship between him and Reibel. 

As of now, there is no clear motive for the attack. 


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