Paul Knight admits killing wife who went missing for more than six years

Jim Balloch

KNOXVILLE — Nearly eight years after Pamela Knight disappeared, her husband has pleaded guilty to killing her.

Paul Anthony Knight, 40, entered a plea today to second-degree murder, and was sentenced to 16 years in prison.

He will remain in prison, however, for at least 25 years, because the 16 years will be served in its entirety and consecutive to an unrelated federal sentence for which his release date is not until 2022.

Pamela Knight, 35, a mother of three, disappeared Oct. 27, 2005, the day of her youngest son’s 7th birthday. Her remains were not discovered until January 2012.

Paul Knight disappeared around the same time as his wife, adopted an alias, and was later arrested on the unrelated federal charges. He was serving the federal term when her remains were found in a secluded area off Eblen Road in Loudon County.

They’d been wrapped in what authorities said appeared to be a blanket or comforter. The body was in the debris of an abandoned shed that had fallen to the ground.

Paul Knight eventually confessed that he strangled his wife following an argument and dumped her body in Loudon County, according to Knox County Assistant Knox County Attorney General Leslie Nassios.