WAAY 31 is working to learn more about a man accused of strangling his girlfriend and beating her dog so badly it died from the injuries. Jonathan Knight, who goes by Tyler, turned himself into police shortly after our story aired on Friday.
Samantha Knight says she wasn't shocked when she heard her ex-husband, Tyler Knight, was wanted by police for nearly a week before he turned himself in.
"He was violent. He beat me all the time. All the time. If it wasn't verbal abuse, then it was physical abuse," she said.
Huntsville police said he was belligerent at Panoply last month and got kicked out. That's when investigators say he tried to strangle his ex-girlfriend and beat her dog so badly it died from internal bleeding. Knight said the two young daughters she shared with Tyler were there when the assaults happened.
"The fact that is their father. The person that is supposed to be a hero just became a monster in front of them," she said.
Samantha said she was married for 4 years, and the relationship changed over time.
"I thought that I loved him. I thought there was something wrong with me and that I was stupid and I was trash. I felt lucky I wasn't alone," she said.
Court documents show Knight was arrested for domestic violence during their marriage, but the charges were later dropped. Now, Samantha says she lives in hiding, afraid he'll hurt her again, something she said would have to happen for her to get a permanent protection order against him.
"I'm told he has to hurt me worse before I can get a protection order that can be indefinite. I was told they had to drop that, because there was insufficient evidence, we had children together, and we had to learn how to cooperate with one another," she said.
Now, she wishes she could have stopped what happened after Panoply.
"I think I should have left a lot sooner, and I think, because I didn't and I didn't follow through with a lot of the charges, it's my fault that this happened, and I really hope she follows through with her charges. Maybe it will prevent it from happening to someone else," she said.
WAAY 31 is working to get in touch with Knight to see if there is anything he wants to say about the charges. An attorney isn't currently listed in court documents.
Shortly after Knight turned himself in on Friday, he posted his bond and walked out of jail. A temporary protection order has been issued by a judge for Knight's current accuser. A hearing on that case is scheduled for May 30th.