Katherine Knight, later dubbed “The Black Knight”, was well known as the town psychopath. Her violent temper and erratic behavior often sent her lovers fleeing for their lives. It wasn’t usual for her to have a cooling off period, and many times the men she tormented would return to her, only for her to unleash her special brand of crazy on them all over again. It would seem that all the men Knight became involved with would have a story, but one man wasn’t so lucky to make it out alive.
Katherine’s legacy of lunacy began back in high school. Her and her sister built a reputation as the rough and tumble type that you don’t want to mess with. Many of her schoolmates and teachers feared Katherine, but lucky for them she was not the best student and decided to leave school at the age of 16 in order to work at a local abattoir.
According to Katherine’s former co-workers she took her job at the abattoir very seriously. Unlike most people that worked there, she seemed to delight in her work. Gutting the pigs and slicing them with expert precision, walking to the front of the line in order to watch the animals get their throat cut and watch the blood drip from their necks, was all very exciting to Katherine. She was often praised by her superiors for her skill at the job.
Her obsession with knives and blood was peculiar, but it was Katherine’s extreme brand of violence that would earn her the nickname “Crazy Kathy” around town. Katherine’s first husband, David Kellet, almost met his end after returning home late from a dart match one evening. Hiding behind a door, Katherine struck Kellet in the back of the head with an iron, cracking his skull. When he returned home from the hospital he found that she had displayed her knife collection above their marital bed to serve as a warning of what would happen to him if he crossed her again.
Katherine and Kellet had their first child, Melissa. Katherine’s cruelty was not limited to Kellet, once even leaving the baby on the railroad tracks. Luckily a local man discovered the baby just minutes before the train was due to roll through, but oddly enough never thought to report anything to the police. Shortly after the incident Kellet decided he was fed up with Katherine’s outbursts and left.
Katherine was livid with Kellet’s decision. Overcome by anger, Katherine was seen swinging an axe in the street and threatening anyone that dared to come near her, smashing a baby stroller against fences and poles, then finally going to a local service station – presumably targeted because it was the station that fixed her estranged husband’s car days before leaving her, smashing out their windows and holding a young boy hostage at knifepoint. Police arrived at the scene to diffuse the situation and Katherine was sent to spend some time in a psychiatric ward.
After her stay in the psychiatric ward Kellet returned to Katherine, fathering another child. Their happiness would prove to be short-lived, and Kellet eventually fled again, citing Katherine’s abusive and unpredictable behavior as the cause. A short time later Katherine would meet the father of her third child, Dave Saunders.
Saunders was a gentle man that suffered unspeakable abuses at the hands of Knight. It was not uncommon for Katherine to swing pans at him or attempt to stab him with scissors. Saunders’ friends even began jokingly taking bets on when the next attack would occur, as he was often seen with cuts and bruises to his face. Several times Saunders had to seek medical attention on account of Knight’s attacks, including broken ribs and cuts so deep that they required stitches. After one argument Katherine slit the throat of Saunders’ eight-week-old puppy simply because she wanted to upset him. Expressing his interest in absolving the relationship with Katherine, predictably she flew off the handle. Vandalizing Saunders’ car and taking a handful of sleeping pills in an attempt to end her life, once again Katherine would find herself single and committed to the psychiatric ward.
Upon Knight’s release from her second stint in the psychiatric ward she would go on to have a brief affair that would lead to the birth of her fourth child. Like the men before him, John Chillingworth would find Katherine’s abuse intolerable and decided to leave her after she had destroyed his false teeth. Alone again, it would be some time before Katherine would meet the man that she would murder in such a horrific manner that the Australian newspapers refused to cover the story.
John Charles Thomas Price, known around town as “Pricey”, was a kind man and loving father. Jealousy over Price’s decision to maintain an amicable relationship with his former wife and his refusal to go through with the divorce were often the catalysts for Kathrine’s psychotic rages. After a particularly heated argument over Price’s decision to place his home in his children’s names, Knight decided to seek revenge. She grabbed a video camera and taped the contents of Price’s tool shed while he was at work the following day. Knowing that he had a few items within the shed belonging to his employer, she sent the tape to Price’s boss. This time Katherine’s vengeance may have cost Pricey a $100,000 a year job, but he would soon learn that he would lose something even greater.
Price did leave Knight over the incident, but several months passed by and Price invited Katherine to move in with him again. The arguments continued, primarily because of Price’s commitment to his children and his refusal to marry Katherine. Knight had even bragged to her brother five months prior to Price’s murder “I’m going to kill Pricey and I’m going to get away with it. I’ll get away with it because I’ll make out that I’m mad.” It would seem that Price’s fate was sealed.
The day prior to Price’s murder, it’s been said that Katherine’s behavior was odd. Her first stop was to her sister’s house in order to retrieve a video camera she had left there several months prior. Next she went to her daughter Natasha’s home and filmed herself playing with her grandchild. During the film Knight turns to the camera and says “I love all my children. I hope I see you all again”. Knight then took her daughter and grandchild out to dinner and asks Natasha if she could take her two younger siblings for the evening. Sensing something was off about Knight’s behavior, Natasha tells her mother “I hope you’re not planning on killing Pricey and yourself.” Knight laughed it off and said goodnight.
That evening Knight drove to Price’s house. Knowing that Price’s children were at their mother’s house and they would have the place to themselves, she walks up the stairs where Price is waiting in bed for her. They have sex and Price falls asleep. Grabbing a boning knife, Katherine begins stabbing Price in the chest. Price put up a struggle and managed to make it to the front porch as Katherine followed behind him, stabbing him a total of 37 times. A trail of blood from the melee could be seen throughout the house, including on the front porch.
After pulling Price’s body back inside, Katherine takes a shower and grabs his ATM card from his jeans pocket. She then drives for a half hour to the nearest bank where she withdraws $1000 from Price’s account. Returning back to Price’s home, Katherine gets to work.
Using her skills she acquired at the abattoir, she expertly begins skinning Pricey’s body, leaving only a small patch of skin with a scar where she had stabbed him in a prior incident. She then took the skin and placed it on meat hooks at the entrance to the home. It’s been said that Knight did such a good job at skinning the body that the mortician was able to sew it back together.
Knight wasn’t finished with Price yet. She then chopped off his head and put it into a pot, along with some vegetables to make a stew. Slices of his buttocks were cooked in the oven, which were then plated up with a gravy and vegetables. Knight left her macabre dinner out on the table along with taunting notes for each of his children. What was left of the body she posed in a chair, holding an empty beer bottle. Then Katherine took an assortment of prescription medication intending to kill herself as well and went to sleep.
The following morning when Pricey failed to show up for work, many became concerned. A neighbor, noticing Price’s car still in the driveway and his work boots left on the porch attempted to knock on the door. Noticing the blood, he immediately went home and phone the police. Nothing would prepare investigators for the carnage that awaited them inside.
Initially Knight claimed she had no recollection of the events that transpired within the home. When the ATM surveillance clearly showed Katherine withdrawing money between the time of murdering Price and skinning his body, she realized she had no other choice but to plead guilty. She is currently serving out a life sentence. Those that arrived on the scene that day still have difficulties erasing the memories of Price’s grisly murder. Price’s children still suffer from the trauma of their father’s horrific death and his brother committed suicide shortly after the trial.