Jealous hammer attacker gets 142 years


Steve Acosta was already a convicted felon when he married Kimberly Celoni. In and out of prison, and on and off drugs, his attorney says he was using again when he brutally attacked his wife with a hammer in her Twin Peaks home in 2008.

Today, a judge sentenced Acosta to 142 years to life in prison. The 59-year-old Acosta was convicted of 20 counts in August, including attempted murder, torture, mayhem and stalking. With two prior convictions in the 1970s and 80s, this was Acosta’s third strike.

Celoni suffers permanent injuries and disfigurement after the attack, which Acosta’s attorney said was prompted by a cocktail of drugs and jealous rage. After 11 years of marriage, Acosta began using drugs again after a back injury, and repeatedly accused his wife of affairs, including one with a man who had been dead for years.

Jesse Garnier
Jesse Garnier is the editor and founder of SFBay. A Mission District native, he also teaches journalism as associate professor at San Francisco State University.

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