A 38-year-old doctor from Long Island was found unconscious in a Manhattan apartment doorway yesterday. Kiersten Rickenbach Cerveny, who had practiced dermatology in Brooklyn and Manhattan and lived in Manhasset with her husband and three children, was pronounced dead at Lenox Hill Hospital.
The cause of death has not yet been officially determined, but initial reports noted bruising around her neck, suggesting she may have been strangled. According to the Daily News, Cerveny "appeared to be the victim of a crime committed somewhere else in the building. It was unclear if she stumbled into the lobby or was dumped there."
More details about Cerveny's final hours have emerged from sources in the tabloids. One source tells the News, "She’s been known to party a little. She was out late with her friends, out until 4, 4:30 (a.m.)."
The victim's father, Robert Rickenbach, told the News, "She was supposed to stay with a friend. He (her husband) hasn’t heard from her." And from the Post:
She told her husband, a fellow dermatologist in Long Island, that she was headed out Saturday for an innocent night on the town, sources said. Andrew Cerveny was being questioned by police at the 10th Precinct on Sunday, sources said...
She bar-crawled around the Lower East Side, drinking heavily and getting high, possibly on coke, sources said, noting that detectives got details of the wild night out from the pals she was with.
Investigators do not believe she was robbed.
On Sunday morning a man called 911 about a woman in the building's doorway—an EMT told the Post, "Her feet were holding the front door open, and her head was by the corner of the door frame"—but fled when the ambulance arrived." And, according to Newsday, "Investigators have video from inside the building showing two men carrying Cerveny down the stairs, a police source said. They have interviewed one of the men and are seeking to talk to the other, the source said."
One of the men seen on video reportedly resides in the building. The Daily News' sources say security camera footage shows the men entering the building and later in the lobby "before the building resident sprinted off...The second man hung around long enough to call 911 before he also fled." The man who called 911 allegedly called again to ask if Cerveny survived.
Update: DNAinfo reports that Cerveny was having an affair with one of the men, a TV producer: "The two went to the 16th Street address. The producer, whose name and age were not immediately released, knew another man who was subletting a third-floor apartment there and frequently hosted parties, sources said. Cerveny and the producer spent about 3 hours there, sources said. She then overdosed and surveillance footage shows two men carrying her into the entryway of the building, sources said." Further, the bruising around her neck may have been from a previous surgery.
Cerveny, who won the America's Junior Miss pageant (now known as Distinguished Young Woman) in 1995, attended Duke University for her undergraduate studies and then Tulane for medical school. Her and Andrew Cerveny's wedding announcement was printed in the NY Times in 2009: "The bride and bridegroom, both dermatologists, met in 2004 as residents at the Medical Center of Louisiana at New Orleans." This was her second marriage, and the couple had three children, ages one to seven.