Inside the tale of Katherine Knight: Cannibal housewife
Picture this: you come home from school one day. Your mother is cooking up a nice mystery meat stew for you to chow down on. After a long day of school, the smells of the vegetables stewing leaves you ravenous. But just before you can dig in, police come to take your mother. Turns out, the mystery meat was your father.
This sounds like some kind of dark comedy scene, but it almost was the real life of the Price children. Their step-mother, Katherine Knight, murdered their father and in the wee hours of the morning got up to skin, decapitate, and cook up a meal with his flesh.
What drives a wife to do such a nasty crime? The truth is, Katherine Knight and John Price were far from a normal couple. Their relationship was on its last legs when this crime occurred.
A history of marital abuse
Katherine Knight, long before she met Price, was an abusive spouse to her three previous partners. It all started with her first marriage to David Kellett, who she often fought with when he would get into spats with her brother. From their first night together, Knight choked Kellett in his sleep after only having intercourse with her three times.
From their first day together to their last, Knight remained violent and continued to abuse Kellett through various means. Kellett initially left town with another woman, but after Knight raised hell in town trying to kill Kellett, he returned to her to help her mental health. She eventually ended their marriage and left to live on her own.
Two more disastrous relationships
After she left Kellett, Knight moved on to David Saunders. But by the end of their relationship, after Saunders escaped, Knight was able to convince police that she was the victim of domestic abuse, not him. She got a restraining order against him, preventing him from seeing their daughter.
Knight had one more relationship before Price, with a man named John Chillingworth. But Knight got together with Price while she was still with Chillingworth. Once he found out about Price, he left her.
Price doesn’t want to marry crazy
John Price knew what came with the name Katherine Knight. But the relationship was initially all roses and sunshine, and his two kids loved her. Things quickly soured when Price and Knight argued over Price’s refusal to marry her. She was kicked out of the home, and in retaliation, Knight got Price fired from his job of 17 years.
The two separated for a while, until Price reached out to reconcile. While Knight was not allowed to move back in with Price and his kids, they did rekindle their relationship. Nothing changed though, as the couple continued to fight with each other, and Price’s friends distanced themselves after he started dating her again.
John’s lost his head
By February 2000, the abuse became intensely physical. All their fighting culminated with Knight stabbing Price in the chest. After that fight, Price ended the relationship again and kicked her out of the house. That was his mistake, as Knight was thirsty for revenge. February 29th, Price took out a restraining order against Knight.
He returned home from work to find his house empty. Thankfully, Knight only sent the kids to a sleepover, and no harm came to them. But Price was still scared, and went to a neighbor’s home. By the time he came home, he showered and went right to bed. Knight used this time to break in, shower, and wake up Price to have sex with him.
At some point during the night, Knight stabbed Price with a butcher’s knife. He got up and tried to crawl to his escape, but he wasn’t successful and died from blood loss. At that point, Knight hung up Price’s body in the kitchen, skinned him, beheaded him, and cooked him into stew. Set at the table were two bowls of stew for both of Price’s children.
A trial not meant for everyone
The trial of Katherine Knight took a while to arrange, as the jury was offered an out based on the images shown and the witnesses used. 12 total jury members dropped out based on the case. Plus, Knight continued to claim innocence. But by the end of the trial, the judge sentenced Knight to life in prison without parole, a first for an Australian woman.
In 2006, Knight tried to appeal the decision saying the punishment was harsher than the crime. But the judges dismissed the appeal, saying the murder was inhumane and appalling beyond belief.