“The next time you’re riding down the road and you happen to see an open barbecue stand, make sure you think about this story before you take a bite of that sandwich. You never know who you might be eating.” – Joe Metheny
On August 5th, 2017, serial killer Joe Metheny was found dead in his prison cell. The 62-year-old, who was notorious for chopping up his victims and selling the flesh as BBQ sandwiches, was sentenced to death in 1998; a ruling which was later overturned and instead he was ordered to serve two life sentences at Western Correctional Institution in Cumberland, Maryland.
Metheny turned to murder after discovering his wife, who had left him and taken their young son with her, was smoking crack under a nearby bridge close to their home in Baltimore. Although he did not find his runaway wife, he did come across two homeless men that he could take out his rage on and under the bridge, he killed them both in cold blood.
This was not only Metheny’s first time killing with his bare hands but also a sinister confidence boost as he was released on both counts of murder due to lack of evidence.
Next, Metheny moved on to murdering sex workers as he began targeting vulnerable women who were struggling with drug-related problems. He lured 45-year-old Cathy Ann Magaziner and 26-year-old Kimberly Spicer back to his trailer before stabbing and strangling them to death.
The twisted serial killer then admitted to chopping up their bodies, before opening a roadside BBQ and it was from there he sold his sandwiches – which contained the flesh of his victims.
He revealed, “I opened up a little open-pit beef stand. I had real roast beef and pork sandwiches. They were very good. The human body taste was very similar to pork. If you mix it together no one can tell the difference.”
When he ran out of his “special meat” he attempted to lure a third victim back to his trailer. Another sex worker named Rita Kemper had fallen into his trap, he recalls, “I got her in there and started to rip her clothes off and knock the hell out of her. She was screaming. I just kept on laughing at her.”
Luckily, Kemper was brave enough to make a run for it, Metheny said, “I turned around for a split second. She ran out the door. There was an eight-foot chain-link fence with barb wire on top of it around the front. There was a stack of wooden pallets next to the fence about 10 feet high. (She) scaled those pallets like a monkey and jumped the fence, and ran down to the main road.” Kemper was able to reach a local gas station and from there she alerted authorities.
During his chilling confession, he told investigators that his only regret was not killing his ex-wife and added, “It ended up as a passion for the taste of blood, and the overwhelming sense of power one gets from taking the life of another.”
It is believed he killed more than ten women, according to his confession, although their bodies have never been recovered as – disturbingly – the evidence has likely been digested.