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Taylor County Man Gets Life Sentence For 2006 Missing Woman's Murder

By: Garin Flowers; Candace Sweat; Mike Springer; Lanetra Bennett Email
By: Garin Flowers; Candace Sweat; Mike Springer; Lanetra Bennett Email

By: Garin Flowers
July 24, 2013

Perry, FL - The man charged in the murder of a woman missing since 2006 will spend the rest of his life in prison.

Lloyd Phelps was found guilty in the first degree murder of Patricia Knight.

That carries a mandatory sentence of life in prison.

Knight went missing back in January of 2006 and was last seen on Calhoun Street in Perry at a relative's home before she disappeared.

Knight's disappearance was declared a homicide five years later.


By Lanetra Bennett
March 18, 2013

Perry, FL - Attorneys say they are treating the first degree murder case of a Taylor County man as a potential death penalty case.

Key witnesses were questioned today just before Lloyd Phelps appeared before a Taylor County judge about two hours ago.

The indictment says Phelps stabbed 41-year-old Patricia Knight to death. Knight went missing back in 2006... Phelps was arrested this past September.

In court this afternoon, Phelps' attorney told the judge that Phelps wants to go to trial as soon as possible because he's having a hard time in the county jail.

They are shooting for May to go to trial. A hearing is set for April 4th for a status update.


[UPDATE] Perry, Florida -September 14, 2012 at 10:20 p.m

Newly released court documents tell how Perry Police believe a missing woman was killed more than six years ago.

A Grand Jury Indictment released Wednesday, September 12 says 58-year-old Lloyd Phelps stabbed 41-year-old Patricia Knight to death.

Knight went missing back in 2006. Five years later, her disappearance was declared a homicide.

Phelps is charged with first-degree murder and tampering with evidence in connection with Knight's disappearance and death.

Phelps was arrested inside his home in Perry Wednesday night.

Court records also show at the time of Phelps' arrest he was on probation.

Phelps was charged in 2010 and sentenced in 2011 for Witness Intimidation and Felony Battery.

A neighbor says Phelps and his wife moved into the area about a year ago. The neighbor describes the two as being quiet and says they kept to themselves.

Phelps is being held without bond at the Taylor County Jail.

WCTV left a message with Phelps' attorney late Friday afternoon for comment.


[UPDATE] Perry, Florida -September 13, 2012 at 11:10 p.m

A Perry man at the center of a missing persons murder investigation was on probation when he was arrested, according to court documents.

Five-eight-year-old Lloyd Phelps was arrested inside his home Wednesday evening in Perry.

Phelps was arrested in connection to the disappearance and death of 41-year-old Patricia Knight.

According to court records, Phelps was charged in 2010 with Felony Battery and Witness Intimidating. He was sentenced in 2011. Phelps was on probation until May 5, 2016, according to documents.

Knight went missing back in January 2006. She was last seen on Calhoun Street in Perry at a relative's home before she disappeared.

Five years later, Knight's disappearance was declared a homicide.

Phelps is charged with first-degree murder and tampering with evidence in connection with Knight's disappearance.

Phelps is being held without bond at the Taylor County Jail.

Perry Police have not said how Phelps knew Knight or what evidence links Phelps to the crime.


[UPDATE] September 12, 2012 at 11:10 p.m.

We have just learned there is an arrest in a case of a woman who has been missing since 2006 from Perry, Florida.

The Perry Police Department confirms that they have arrested Lloyd Phelps and charged him with first degree murder in the case of missing Patricia Knight.

They arrested him around 7 p.m. Wednesday.

Police say a grand jury handed down an indictment allowing them to arrest Phelps.

They are not releasing many details as to what exactly that evidence is right now, but say they will release more details Wednesday.

The 41-year-old Knight has been missing since January 2006.

After five years, her disappearance was declared a homicide.

We will keep you updated as the story continues to unfold.


Perry, Florida - James and Carol Locket say the years past have been an emotional roller coaster. On one hand, they kept a little hope that she was still alive somewhere. But as time went on, they began to think they would never see her alive again. Now they know for sure.

They say they've waited five years to find out what happened to their daughter. Now that they know, they're struggling with their emotions.

"It's kind of good news, bad news. It's bad news to find out that it is a homicide, but at least we know what happened to her now," said James Locket.

They knew something wasn't right when their daughter, 41-year-old Patricia Knight, didn't call her mother on her birthday back in January 2006.

Now, five years later, the Perry Police Department says Knight's disappearance has been reclassified as a homicide, and they have the physical evidence to conclude that she was the victim of a violent crime. It's a detail Locket says causes many restless nights.

"The thing that nags my mind the most is that she was the victim of a violent crime. I try to imagine what she must have gone through during this particular thing happening to her," he said.

Authorities are very tight-lipped about details of the new developments, but will say they are looking at a few people in connection with this crime.

Knight's parents say stories of missing women on the news bring back fresh emotions, and they realize just how close they came to joining the ranks of those who may never get answers.

"You just have to hope that something good comes out of it. Unfortunately, for my daughter is was a tragic end, but at least it's an end," said Locket.

Captain Jamie Cruse with the Perry Police Department would not elaborate on where the physical evidence was found, but said it had to be brought back to Taylor County where a medical examiner confirmed their suspicions.

Knight's mother says the new information is just confirmation of what she already knew; that her daughter was no longer with them.


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