A caretaker died at a hospital days after her patient’s son beat her with a side table, Oregon authorities said.
The 79-year-old patient called 911 on Nov. 13 to say her son, Benjamin Hershel Ritchie, 44, “assaulted her and her caretaker” in an unincorporated area of Washington County, according to a Nov. 29 news release from the Washington County Sheriff’s Office.
Deputies arrived to find caretaker Clare Krill, 57, lying on the floor, according to the release. She had “severe trauma to her head and face, which deputies learned was caused when Ritchie struck her with a side table.”
First responders treated Krill before taking her to a hospital in serious condition, the sheriff’s office said. She died from her injuries at the hospital on Nov. 22.
Krill leaves behind a daughter and son, according to a Facebook post from a family member.
“Clare was a wonderful mother, supportive sister and a true friend to all. She had an unrivaled love for her daughter Alli, and son Evan,” the family member wrote. “She dedicated her life to helping others, and our world benefited from her. She was a beautiful spirit and bright light to all of us.”
Krill’s kindness also resonated with others in her life.
“Clare was a sweetheart of a human being, a mother, daughter, sister and nurse,” a friend wrote on Facebook.
Ritchie was arrested the day of the incident and on Nov. 21 was indicted on a number of charges, including attempted murder and assault, according to the sheriff’s office. After Krill’s death, he was charged with murder on Nov. 28.
“He remains at the Washington County jail awaiting trial,” the release said.
Washington County is about 25 miles west of Portland.