Staten Island socialite Toni Grossi Abrams was brutally murdered far from home this week before her body was uncermoniously dumped on a soccer field in Panama.
Police say Mrs. Grossi Abrams -- who would have turned 59 yesterday -- was beaten to death, then partially dismembered and stuffed in a suitcase before she was brought to the field about three miles away and set on fire.
According to an article in the Staten Island Advance, Panamian police have three suspects in custody, including an American woman. People close to the investigation are wondering if Grossi Abrams' killing is linked to a real estate deal gone bad and an ensuing lawsuit with a woman named Angela Healey Watkins, who is said to be politically well-connected in Panama. Recently, Grossi Abrams was vindicated in her legal battle with Watkins, who allegedly sold a piece of land on a Pacific island to a third party shortly after Gross Abrams had already paid for it three years ago.
The chief suspect in the actual killing is 56-year-old Debra Ridgleia, who worked for Grossi Abrams, according to an article in the NY Post. Ridgleia actually went to Panamanian police to report her boss missing, which is when observant officers noticed cuts on her hands and tests found blood underneath her fingernails.
(Photo by Arnulfo Franco/AP)