A man in Illinois is charged with shooting a professional basketball player dead. The man, 51-year-old Jeffrey Keller, thought that former European basketball star Nate Fox, 37, was a romantic rival, according to police. On December 22, Fox was shot dead in the driveway of his home in Bloomingdale, Illinois. Keller allegedly thought Fox was having an affair with a woman who Keller felt “emotionally” involved with.
Here’s what you need to know:
1. The Woman in Question ‘Didn’t Even Like’ Nate Fox
The Chicago Tribune, citing prosecutors, reports that Keller is accused of “stalking” Fox before shooting him on December 22. The paper goes on to report that although Fox did work with the woman, at an insurance company, “she didn’t even like” the former pro-baller. The woman was referred to as “Katie” during proceedings. The Tribune reports that the murder was so calculated, according to prosecutors, that Keller waited till the 5 foot 9 former player was exiting his vehicle, as Keller knew Fox would be in an awkward position.
2. Keller Lives in a Home Valued at More Than $1 Million
Keller is the owner of a successful Internet company and lives in a home valued at more than $1 million, reports NBC Chicago. His company was founded as Athletics2000 in 1998, according to their website:
The launch of Athletics2000 in 1998 started with content provided by local school athletic administrators, and has grown to a place of up to date information integrating student athletes lives and activities into the community. Expansion of services and users has led to growth in a multitude of areas. 8to18, Inc. is quickly becoming the number one provider of sport and activity information from local organizations.
3. One Colleague Called Keller a ‘Fabulous Executive’
According to his LinkedIn page, Jeffrey Keller has had a long career in tech business. He is a graduate of Indiana University’s Kelley School of Business. In addition to 8to18, he’s also been the founder of KellerApps and worked for Arroweye Solutions from February 2003 to March 2008. Both are tech companies focused on building apps and solutions for mid-level companies. One endorser on LinkedIn, Allen Patin, says about Keller, “There are not enough positive things I can say about Jeff and his management skills.” Patin went on to call Keller a “fabulous executive.”
4. Nate Fox Got a ‘Full Ride’ Basketball Scholarship at Boston College
According to his obituary, Nate Fox got a “full ride” basketball scholarship at Boston College but then transferred to the University of Maine to continue to play ball. He graduated from there with a degree in communications. After college, he moved to Europe to play professionally for teams in Portugal, Germany, Israel, France, Holland and the Netherlands. He retired in 2012 after winning the Belgian championship with Okapi Aalstar. His obit describes him as a fan of all Chicago sports teams and that he enjoyed camping, fishing and grilling.
5. Keller Faces Life in Prison
Keller has been charged with first-degree murder in the case. He is being held without bail in the case. He faces a sentence of 45 years to life in prison if convicted. ABC Chicago reports that Keller is being held at DuPage County Jail and will appear in court again on January 21. The Chicago Tribune reports that Keller had been staying with a friend out-of-state in the aftermath of Fox’s shooting. The paper says that Keller told his friend about the shooting and the friend called police. On January 14, Keller voluntarily handed himself over to police.