Former ABC Nightline anchor Ted Koppel’s son, Andrew Koppel, was found dead early this morning in an upper Manhattan apartment after reportedly consuming large amounts of alcohol at numerous New York bars yesterday.
The New York Post spoke with 32-year-old waiter Russell Wimberly, who had met Koppel, 40, yesterday at a Hell’s Kitchen bar and spent the day bar-hopping and drinking. “There was a lot of alcohol. He didn’t take anything else [drugs] around me, and neither of us ate all day,” he told the paper. “We talked about our kids . . . He said he had a kid and loved [her] a lot.”
Wimberly and Koppel took a taxi to the apartment of Belinda Caban, 53, stopping on the way to purchase whiskey and beer at a liquor store.
Caban, who called Wimberly a drinking buddy, told The Post: “I didn’t understand anything [Koppel] said. We took him to the bedroom and laid him down to rest.”
After a couple of hours, she and Wimberly discovered he had urinated and defecated in the bed and appeared not to be breathing. They called 911.
The medical examiner has yet to determine a cause of death.
Andrew Koppel had a history of alcohol abuse problems including a conviction in 1993 for assaulting senatorial aide Patrick Ahearn at a Capitol Hill bank machine while a law student at Georgetown. He was ordered into alcohol treatment for that offense. A few years prior to that, Koppel was driving his father’s Mercedes when he was involved in a minor accident in which alcohol was a factor.
Koppel, who resigned as an attorney for the New York City Housing Authority’s civil litigation division in 2008, was living with his girlfriend and their daughter in Rockaway Park, Queens. He was the third child of Ted and Grace Anne Koppel and the only son.