When a woman named Rita Kemper escaped the clutches of 450-pound monster Joe Metheny in December 1996, the residents of Baltimore, Maryland were in for a big shock. Not only did Metheny confess to being a serial killer, he admitted to selling human meat to unsuspecting customers at his roadside BBQ stand.
Kemper was a prostitute whom Metheny had kidnapped, brought back to his trailer, and severely beaten. Luckily, she managed to escape and reach the authorities. When police took Metheny into custody, they had no idea of the brutality they were about to uncover. Metheny himself told them, “I’m a very sick person.”
Joe Metheny’s murders, at least the confirmed ones, started in 1994, with the killing of a prostitute whom he buried near his trailer. When, soon after, Metheny’s drug-addicted wife took their son and deserted him, he flew into a rage. He went looking beneath a bridge where he thought his wife and son might be living, but instead he discovered two homeless men sleeping on dirty mattresses – two men with whom, Metheny believed, his wife did drugs. He killed both men with an axe.
That same night, Metheny allegedly lured two prostitutes under the same bridge with drugs, hoping to find his family’s whereabouts. He murdered both of them. Looking around, the killer realized a nearby fisherman had seen what he had done, so Metheny murdered him as well. He weighted down all three bodies and threw them into the river.
Soon after, Metheny was arrested for the murders of the two homeless men. He was denied bail and spent a year-and-a-half in county jail, but he was acquitted after a short trial due to lack of evidence. Joe Metheny was back on Baltimore’s streets.
Once he was free, Metheny promptly killed two more prostitutes, but this time he dismembered them, storing some of their body parts in his freezer. He opened a small BBQ stand by the side of the road the next few weekends, and he sold human meat mixed in with beef and pork to customers. The cannibal told authorities, “the human body tastes very similar to pork. If you mix it together no one can tell the difference.”
When he ran out of his “special meat,” he went back on the hunt, eventually luring Rita Kemper to his trailer. Kemper was to be butchered and sold to the unwitting public just like the two other unfortunate women who had crossed paths with the cannibal killer, but, instead, she escaped from the trailer and put an end to Metheny’s sickening crimes.
When the Baltimore police interrogated him, Metheny said, “The only thing I feel bad about in any of this, is I didn’t get to murder the 2 motherfuckers I was really after. And that’s my ex ole lady and the bastard she got hooked up with.” He added, “So the next time you’re riding down the road and you happen to see an open pit beef stand that you’ve never seen before, make sure you think about this story before you take a bite of that sandwich.”
Joe Metheny was sentenced to death for his crimes, but the conviction was overturned to life in prison in 2000.
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