Woman charged with poisoning boyfriend just hours after he inherited $30 million
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Featured Image Credit: Minot Police Department/Steven Riley/Facebook
A woman from North Dakota has been charged with killing her boyfriend just hours after he inherited $30 million.
Steven Edward Riley Jr., from Minot in North Dakota, died on 5 September at a hospital in Bismarck.
Witnesses said the 51-year-old had fallen ill on 3 September; the same day he met his lawyer to collect his huge inheritance sum.
His partner, 47-year-old Ina Thea Kenoyer, didn't call 911 until the following day, after which paramedics arrived to find Riley unresponsive.
He was taken to a local hospital before being transferred to Bismarck, where he died.
An autopsy revealed Riley's cause of death was poisoning after he ingested toxic amounts of antifreeze.
On Monday (30 October), police arrested Kenoyer and charged her with killing Riley through poisoning.
In a statement on Facebook, Minot Police Department said police believe Kenoyer had financial motives to murder Riley.
According to records cited by the New York Post, Kenoyer told investigators she was entitled to Riley's inheritance as his common-law wife.
However, North Dakota does not recognize such relationships - a factor which allegedly made Kenoyer angry when she found out.
She further claimed that she had planned to split Riley’s inheritance with his son.
Police were led to believe Kenoyer may have poisoned Riley after he allegedly revealed plans to break off his relationship with Kenoyer shortly after he received the money.
One witness claimed to investigators she had seen Kenoyer throwing Riley’s property outside their home out of anger over his apparent plans to leave.
Kenoyer offered investigators a number of possible scenarios for how Riley could have ingested the antifreeze.
In a search of the home, police found a glass Coors Light bottle and a plastic mug in the garage, both containing suspected antifreeze.
Investigations Commander Capt. Dale Plessas described the case as 'extremely complex'.
“Thank you to everyone who provided us with information that helped our investigators piece this together," he said.
Kenoyer has been charged with Class AA Felony Murder and is being held at the Ward County Jail as the investigation into Riley's death continues.
At a court hearing on Tuesday (31 October), Ward County State’s Attorney Roza Larson asked the court for a bond of $1 million.
“This was an intentional and heinous act. This bond is consistent with people with similar charges,” Larson said.
Kenoyer responded to proclaim her innocence, saying: “But why is it so high with this being my first offense? I’m not responsible for this."
North Central District Court Judge Richard Hagar set Kenoyer's bond at $1 million cash.
UNILAD has contacted Minot Police Department for comment.