Local News

2 Knives Seized From Home of Slain Child

Posted January 16, 2007

— Police seized two knives from the home of a Clayton man accused of killing his 4-year-old daughter last week, according to a search warrant released Tuesday.

John Patrick Violette is in custody in Washington, D.C., and is expected to be brought back to Johnston County on Wednesday to face a first-degree murder charge in the decapitation of his daughter, Katlin, police said.

Amber Violette returned home from work Friday afternoon to find her daughter dead and her husband missing. Neighbors said they saw John Violette speeding through the neighborhood and talking to himself earlier in the afternoon.

Police seized numerous items from the Violette home Friday afternoon as part of their investigation, including a serrated kitchen knife with dark red stains on it and a butcher knife.

Jeans, children's pajamas, a trash can, drywall and carpeting, all of which had dark red stains, a computer and miscellaneous documents also were taken from the home, according to the search warrant returned to the court after it was executed.

"We've prepared ourselves for (the possibility that) there may never be a suitable explanation for how something like this may have happened," Clayton Police Chief Glen Allen said Tuesday.

“I’ve been in law enforcement for 25 years. This is one of the worst cases I’ve ever been associated with, and I don’t understand it. I don’t know if I or anyone else will ever fully understand this type of thing,” he said.  "It's extremely puzzling to us as well as it is to ... everyone else."

Authorities tracked John Violette to a Washington, D.C., hotel, where they arrested him early Saturday. He was quoting Bible verses and screaming uncontrollably after his arrest, authorities said.

Clayton police have not talked with Violette yet, and investigators are checking to see if he had previous signs of mental illness, Allen said.

"That is part of the continuing investigation in this case," he said. “Several days into this investigation, we do not have a motive.”

District Attorney Susan Doyle said that a judge likely would order a mental evaluation once Violette has an attorney to represent him.

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  • sjeure Jan 17, 2007

    I can only pray for the family of this young innocent childa.

  • trojandnc Jan 16, 2007

    This is one tragedy that I do not care to hear anymore details about. As a father of a 4-year old daughter, I just can't get out of head what this little princess must have gone through. I can remember the look in my daughter's eye's last year when she had to get her tonsils removed and I had to hold her while she was being put under. It took me a week to get over that. I'm at a loss....

  • madbrewdawg Jan 16, 2007

    For those who do not realize it, if you go back to the other related story "Clayton Community Struggles" and place your cursor over the picture of Kaitlin you will see that the photo was provided by the Violette Family. Obviously it is their wish for the public to see this beautiful picture of her as she was and for the public to put a face with this little angel so that she is remembered as just that. I would imagine that to begin the healing process if at all possible that the family especially the mother would need to see more pictures of her reminding them of all the happy times and memories they have of her while she was alive to try to overshadow the last images that I am sure now haunt them. Obviously since they provided the photo to the media it was their wish that it be made public. This is not about what we do or do not think needs to be seen but about how they choose to handle their pain and how they choose to have her remembered and their wishes should be respected.

  • cardiothumper Jan 16, 2007

    I pray that God has mercy on this man's soul-I have struggled with "why"-My heart goes out to the family and I want them to know that they are in my prayers. There was a comment made a couple of days ago about our soicety being quick to judge that we dont know the whole story well someone must not be paying attention this man was at home with his daughter by his self and left her alone to fly off to washington and you have a doubt about whether he is guilty-thank god you are not judge or jury or this sick man would walk. WRAL please let this family morn in piece-just think what if it was your child how would you feel about having his/her picture all over the media.

  • dogsrule12cheek Jan 16, 2007

    This has to be the worst thing i have heard in a long time
    why would anyone do this to there child (maybe a coward) he should
    have just done his self in he will never make it in Jail Poulation
    My prayers go out to Amber the childs mother she will need all the prayres we can give.

  • BottomLine Jan 16, 2007

    This joker looks like a posterchild for the electric chair. The only help he needs is assistance digging a hole for himself.

  • Plenty Coups Jan 16, 2007

    I think the justice should be left to the mother who had to deal with this horrific experience. This story has such a haunting effect on all of us who have children. I hope she has a loving supportive family to help her cope. I wish there was something our community could do to help her. My heart aches for her. As for earlier comment ...not sure I care about him or what was going on in his head. Lets care for the victims...he is a waste of our time

  • dmpaltman Jan 16, 2007

    This is a sick tragedy, how could a Dad kill his own daughter, what could she have done to cause him to snap. There is no reason what so ever, and this man needs a swift trail and a painful a slow death. And WRAL, take this childs, this precious angels picture down from your website. There is no reason to show her picture.

  • carolowl2002 Jan 16, 2007

    i worked with this man atlowes he was a little weard very quite but always smiled nad was good with customers,its realy hard for me to understand why he would do this.he was proud to be a dad.just goes to show you just dont know anyone and whats in there minds.im at a lost.i cant believe this happened.especialy with someone you worked with.my prayers go out to the mom.and her family.

  • builder276 Jan 16, 2007

    krfarrin, the only help this sick SOB needs is help getting on the execution table for his injection. Help him hell.