Condemned Inmate Anthony McKnight Dies of Unknown Cause

SAN QUENTIN, CA (STL.News) Condemned inmate Anthony McKnight, 65, was found unresponsive in his San Quentin State Prison cell on October 17, 2019, at 9:30 p.m. and was pronounced dead at 10:09 p.m.  He had been on California’s death row since November 17, 2008.  His cause of death is pending the results of an autopsy.

McKnight was admitted from Alameda County on August 24, 1987, to serve a 63-year sentence for attempted first-degree murder, rape with force/violence, assault with a deadly weapon, oral copulation and kidnapping to commit a sex offense.

While he was incarcerated, Alameda County investigators linked his DNA to the 1985 murders of Betty Stuart, 22; Diane Stone; 17; Talita Dixon, 13; Monique Davis, 18; and Beverly Bryant, 24. An Alameda County jury sentenced McKnight to death on November 17, 2008.

Since 1978, when California reinstated capital punishment, 82 condemned inmates have died from natural causes, 27 have committed suicide, 13 have been executed in California, one was executed in Missouri, one was executed in Virginia, 14 have died from other causes and two – including McKnight – are pending a cause of death.  There are currently 731 offenders on California’s death row.