Court hears testimony from elderly rape victim - KPLC 7 News, Lake Charles, Louisiana

McKeel found guilty in rape, beating of elderly woman

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Gabe McKeel Jr. (Source: Calcasieu Parish Sheriff's Office) Gabe McKeel Jr. (Source: Calcasieu Parish Sheriff's Office)

Gabe McKeel Jr. was found guilty Thursday in 14th Judicial District Court of raping and beating an elderly DeQuincy woman.

Judge Ron Ware found McKeel guilty on all of the charges against him: Aggravated rape, aggravated burglary and second-degree battery.

On Jan. 28 of last year, authorities said McKeel broke into the home of a 94-year-old woman in DeQuincy and viciously attacked her -- a woman who had talked to him about raking leaves for her.

Ware revoked McKeel's bond on Thursday.

Sentencing is set for 10 a.m. March 1.

First Assistant District Attorney Cynthia Killingsworth prosecuted the case.

The victim is still living but both sides agreed to use previously video taped testimony during the trial this week, sparing her the ordeal of having to testify again.

While being video taped under oath, the victim described how she was getting ready to watch the Lawrence Welk Show when she was attacked, and how the man she refers to as "the beater" pinned her down, keeping one hand cupped over her mouth and punching her over and over again with the other. 

District Attorney John DeRosier said it was brutal.

"She lost consciousness on several occasions during the attack. He needs to spend the rest of his natural life in prison where he will not be a danger any longer to anybody, elderly or otherwise," DeRosier said.

Killingsworth said McKeel left his cap and his sperm at the crime scene while taking some of the victim's blood with him. According to testimony, the victim had written McKeel's number in her phone book, helping police build their case against him.

DeRosier was in court as they played the victim's video statement.

"In her court testimony, she actually pointed to the defendant and she said she was positive that he was the guy who did it and pointed to him and on several occasions called him the beater, being the individual who beat her up," DeRosier said.

According to testimony, the victim was so terrified after her attacker left, she turned on every light in her home which caught the attention of neighbors and led to relatives coming to help her.

McKeel waived trial by jury.

McKeel was represented in court by defense attorney Andy Casanave.

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