A Waterloo man is dead, and his girlfriend is behind bars, charged with killing him.
Police were called to the 100 block of Quincy Street in Waterloo just before midnight Monday. Upon arrival, they found 38-year-old Keon Dale, dead.
His girlfriend, Kristie Clark-Richardson of Cedar Falls, was later arrested and charged with first-degree murder.
This is the first murder to happen this year in Waterloo.
It appears Keon Dale and his girlfriend argued outside of his house on Quincy Street. Their fight ended with Dale being stabbed, collapsing on the steps of his cousin's home next door.
Family and neighbors are stunned, and say there's a lesson to be learned from what happened.
Robert Smith was the last person to see his cousin, Keon Dale, alive. His upstairs neighbor woke him up, saying Dale was at the front door.
"I got dressed, and I came outside. He was holding his side, and he just said, 'She got me.' He said, 'She got me, cuz,'" Smith said.
Smith called 911 for help.
"I was his last hope," said Smith.
But it was too late. Keon Dale died on Smith's front steps.
"It was so sad," Smith said. "There was nothing I could do for him."
Witnesses told police they heard Dale and Clark-Richardson fighting. Clark-Richardson claims Dale strangled her, she tried to leave, and police believe that's when she stabbed Dale to death.
"He was cut down short in his life, and didn't deserve to die at such a young age," said Smith.
Neighbors are saddened, too.
"The devil's very busy, and the only thing you've got to do is get mad for a second, and then do something stupid, and your whole life's messed up," said neighborhood resident Leon Mosley. "Not only is he dead, her life's messed up. Her family's going to be upset. His family's going to be upset. It's a never ending battle,"
But Mosley is thankful murders are becoming less common in Waterloo. He credits police for doing a better job with neighborhood patrols, but also says more can be done in the community to prevent crimes like this.
"It shows we've still got to tighten up. We've got to be nosey neighbors. We've got to be watchful neighbors. And whenever you see something, you need to call the police so they can come and do their job," Mosley said.
And police encourage that. They'd rather intervene before a situation gets out of hand.
"Call us. Call a neighbor. Call a friend. Walk away and try to calm down, and obviously talking something out is much preferable to what happened last night," said Lt. Mike McNamee with the Waterloo Police Department.
For now, they're continuing their investigation into the murder, talking with witnesses and gathering information about what happened.
They had not previously responded to domestic disputes between Dale and Clark-Richardson, but family members tell KWWL the couple had an abusive relationship.
Keon Dale is undergoing an autopsy at the state medical examiner's office in Ankeny. His funeral arrangements are pending with Greer Funeral Home in Waterloo.
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