Paul John Knowles
Written By: ML
Edited By: Grave Reviews Staff
Paul John Knowles was born on April 17, 1946 in Florida. He was beaten and physically abused by his father when he was a child. As a result, he was already committing petty crimes such as stealing when he was just 8 years old. He was then sent to foster homes and reformatories but it did not improve his behavior. In fact, he was introduced to prison life as early as 19 years old.
From then on, he was in and out of prison. At one point in his criminal life in early 1974, he met the woman he was going to marry. This woman named Angela Covic arranged for his release and they had plans to get married. Apparently, Covic was warned by a psychic fortuneteller not to get involved with Knowles. When Knowles got out of prison, Covic called off their wedding. This moment of heartbreak was when his behavior changed for the worse.
Paul John Knowles was given the moniker “Casanova Killer” because of his good looks and charm. His signature murder method was strangulation, though there were a few times when he shot his victims.
He was an active criminal from the night he escaped prison on July 26, 1974. He was imprisoned for stabbing a bartender but managed to pick the lock of his cell.
Knowles’ first victim was a 65-year old woman. He broke into her house, bound and gagged her, stole valuables, and ran away with her car. When he was ready to let go of the car, he noticed 2 girls who saw him and might identify him. He kidnapped the girls, strangled them, and threw their bodies in the swamp.
His killing spree lasted until November of 1974 where he killed random people in different locations, of which around 18 to 20 were confirmed his victims. He knows no age or gender when it comes to his kills. In one instance, he even attempted necrophilia with his victim.
It was a game of hide-and-seek from the time Knowles escaped a car chase with the police on November 16, 1974. A manhunt ensued where authorities made use of K9 dogs, law enforcement officers from different agencies, and even helicopters to capture Knowles.
The next day, Knowles was cornered by a war veteran and armed civilian with a shotgun. They called the authorities and found out that he was outside the manhunt area. He could have escaped if not for the help of the local citizens.
Death or Current Whereabouts
Knowles was already in custody and confessed to 35 killings in a span of 4 months, but only 18-20 murders were fully verified.
On December 18, 1974, while he was being transferred to a maximum security prison with Sheriff Earl Lee and Agent Ronnie Angel, Knowles tried to escape. He wrestled to get Lee’s firearm but Agent Angel fired three shots to his chest which killed him instantly. Knowles was 28 years old at that time.
Do you like our article on Paul John Knowles? Comment below.