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Father Of Deadly Old City Beating Victim Speaks Out

By Oren Liebermann and Tony Hanson

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — Kevin Kless had moved to Philadelphia for a new job only two months ago when police say he was beaten to death in Old City. His father, John Kless, spoke with Eyewitness News on the phone from his New York home.

John Kless is begging for the public’s help.

“I need anybody that was in the area at the time to please call the police to find out who these people were that did this to my son,” Kless said.

Kevin Kless, 23, was walking along 4th and Chestnut Streets at 2:30am Saturday morning, after going out, when, police say, he yelled at a passing cab. They say a car with four men right behind the cab stopped.  Three of the men got out of the car and attacked Kless, beating him until he was unconscious (see related story).

“I’m completely numb. I can’t say another word. I can’t cry anymore,” John Kless said.

Police are looking for a car they initially described as a four-door, maroon Mazda 626, probably a 2000-2003 model, and the perpetrators as Middle Eastern or Indian, but they add that the early video leaves a lot of room for interpretation.   They are encouraging eyewitnesses to report anything they saw, even if it does not conform to the initial police descriptions of the perpetrators or the car.

Police are also looking at surrounding buildings for any surveillance video of the car speeding away.

John Kless says he spoke with his son a few days ago and was looking forward to visiting.

“I was coming down in the next week to see him and he was going to show me his apartment and his new office.”

Kevin Kless was rushed to Jefferson University Hospital where he died at 7:10 Saturday evening. Kevin’s parents decided to donate his organs to save the lives of others.

“Two kidneys and his liver were given to three different people to continue their lives.”

John Kless says the only thing he is looking for in return is help finding the men who killed his son.

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  • Lynne

    Doesn’t matter why they did it. If they beat him to death: it’s murder. Old City after the bars close can be similar to a war zone. My own son walks those streets frequently and I have nothing but heartfelt sympathy for those parents. Question: Should my son be carrying, and learn to use, a 9mm ? Maybe the answer is ” yes,” (But not if drinking.)

  • Nutter Telephones Condolences to Mother of Man Murdered in Old City « CBS Philly

    […] An emotional Mayor Nutter said he had “a very heartfelt” phone conversation with Kendall Kless in upstate New York,  in which he expressed his condolences for the beating death of her son, 23-year-old Kevin Kless (see related stories). […]

  • DR Phil

    When caught these animals should be hung live on pay per view. I’ll buy it

  • Lisa

    @RD: Just because you know this family doesn’t mean you know what happened. There was an argument with a cab driver, these people decided to take matters into their own hands for whatever reason and bam! They killed him. If anything, you should be looking for the taxi cab driver

  • RD

    All of you leaving comments that there is more to this story and something “fishy” is going on are wrong. I know this family and this was senseless violence against an innocent man. And these 4 men resonsible deserve to be punished as badly as Kevin was. You should be ashamed of yourself, for blaming a victim in such a horrible crime.

  • Philly

    why didnt they call 911 and give the car’s tag # ? Or even take a pic of the tag ? This story will change wait n see

    • Mike Old City

      Perhaps because as your loved one is being beat to death the only thing on your mind is getting help fast! This all happened in like 10 minutes and those girls were panicking, in shock and in fear….but they should have gotten out their cell phone to take pictures and call 911??????? I would not wish it on anyone – not even ignorant people (hint, hint) – but if you ever find yourself in a similar situation and your loved one is being killed in front of you, let us all know how you react and how that picture comes out. Idiots!

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