Thanksgiving isn’t always as harmonious as it should be. Most of us have witnessed, or participated, in arguments with relatives over past grievances or politics. That’s normal. But, what isn’t typical is when it escalates into stabbing or finding out your loved one wants to eat people instead of a turkey for the holiday. Don't miss Homicide For The Holidays, returning to Oxygen on Saturday, November 25 at 6/5c. Here are five times Thanksgiving went way wrong.
1. Woman Stabs Half Brother With Serving Fork
A Thanksgiving argument escalated into a 27-year-old woman stabbing her half-brother with a serving fork in Annapolis, Maryland 2012. Shenika Allsup allegedly stabbed Deonte Wallace, 23, in the neck. Police who responded to the subsequent 911 call discovered Wallace in the parking lot of the home clutching his neck, his shirt bloodied, according to the Huffington Post. Two wounds were found at the base of Wallace’s neck. He suffered non-life threatening injuries. His half-sister was charged with first-degree assault, second-degree assault, and reckless endangerment.
2. After Thanksgiving Dinner, Man Shoots His Family
A Thanksgiving gathering turned deadly in Juniper, Florida in 2009 when three adults and a child were shot to death in front of 13 other relatives, according to the Associated Press. The gunman, Paul Michael Merhige, sat through three hours of Thanksgiving Day dinner in addition to participating in sing-alongs before opening fire. There were no arguments. Everyone was getting along fine until Merhige murdered his 79-year-old aunt, his twin sisters, one of whom was pregnant and a 6-year-old girl. After the slayings, he apparently was heard saying he had waited 20 years to kill some of his family members, CBS News reports. The child’s father told CBS News, “He had this whole thing pre-planned. His goal was to shoot his sisters and punish his parents.” Merhige lead the FBI on a manhunt before his capture. He pleaded guilty for the murders and was sent to prison for life.
3. Man kills 49-year-old son over chores
Seventy-six-year-old Ayalis Clay Oliver of Colorado asked his son Keith Oliver, 49, to help out around the house on Thanksgiving Day 2009. His son did not agree to do any chores, which resulted in hours of arguing, according to Fox News. Keith’s mother told her son to leave, and he refused. In turn, Ayalis got his .357-caliber revolver and shot his son to death. The son’s last words were that he was “trying to stand up like a man.”
4. Trivial Pursuit game leads to hatchet threats
On Thanksgiving Day 2012, a game of Trivial Pursuit turned heated and potentially deadly. One player allegedly threatened another with a hatchet. According to, Centre Daily Times, when police arrived at the Port Matilda, Pennsylvania home, they seized the hatchet and discovered the weapon was actually a piece of drug paraphernalia. The person wielding it was arrested.
5. Man fatally shoots pair of teen cousins that break into his home
Two cousins from Little Falls, Minnesota were shot to death on Thanksgiving Day 2012 after breaking into a man’s home. Byron Smith, 65, shot 18-year-old Haile Kifer and 17-year-old Nick Brady multiple times after the teens broke into his home.
A medical examiner said the initial shots didn’t kill teens, but he continued to shoot them, according to Twin Cities Pioneer Press. Smith claimed he was defending himself and feared for his life. However, prosecutors argued he not only sat waiting for the cousins to break in but also that he went too far, continuing to shoot the teens after they were no longer a threat. He was convicted and sentenced to life in prison.
6. Man stabs his elderly parents
A 34-year-old man allegedly stabbing his parents during a 2016 Thanksgiving celebration in Port Orange, Florida. According to WPTV, Thomas J. Daugherty, 76, was stabbed three times in the chest. Patsy Daugherty, 72, was stabbed once. The two survived the attack. Their son, Edwin N. Daugherty, allegedly stabbed his parents before throwing the knife into some bushes nearby. When police arrived at the scene, Edwin was outside the home, flagging down the cops.
[Photo: Getty Images]