CARROLLTON, Va. (WAVY) — In a single-story home on Smith Neck Road in Carrollton, daily chores present a struggle for 47-year-old Charlitta Knightnor. She has constant pain all day.
Medication helps the multiple sclerosis that she’s had for 10 years, but there is no remedy for the emotional pain that afflicts her entire family.
On the evening of January 20, Knightnor’s husband, 54-year-old Maurice Doctor, was stabbed in his home. Deputies arrested Doctor’s mother-in-law, Theresa Knightnor, who is charged with first-degree murder. She was 67 at the time of the incident, which was witnessed by the victim’s wife and their three children, who are now 14, 10, and 9 years old.
A family photo from three years ago captures happier times when the family was visiting Charleston, South Carolina. Charlitta’s mother, on the far right, used to visit almost daily to help with the children.
She was in the home on the night of January 20 when a dispute concerning the 13-year-old son turned violent. Knightnor tells 10 On Your Side the dispute moved to the teen’s bedroom, where the three adults ended up on the child’s bed.
“I fell, he fell on me, and my mom fell on him, and she had a knife in her hand,” is how Charlitta Knightnor explains what authorities call a case of first-degree murder.
Because of the pending trial, Charlitta says she and the children are not allowed to contact her mother. If given permission to contact her mother, the younger Knightnor says she would embrace her mother She was released on bond to await her trial, which is set for January 3.
“Of course, I would hug her and of course, I would forgive her,” said the younger Knightnor.
The family also faces foreclosure and eviction early next year. She has relatives in the area but those relatives don’t have room to accommodate the younger Knightnor, who uses a walker or cane to get around, and her three children. Knightnor says she’s not been able to settle in probate court so far despite paying around $5,000 in fees. Her husband didn’t have a will.
10 On Your Side asked if her husband were alive today, what advice would he offer?
“Do what I know what’s best, what he would do, and that’s what I’m trying to do,” said the younger Knightnor, who is hopeful she will receive disability benefits early next year.