Knives Out: Self-Defense Claim Stemmed from Fight Over Cutting Onions


Charles Michael Calvert

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Reading almost like something out of the Onion, WPTA in Indiana is reporting a 60-year-old man was charged after stabbing his girlfriend, a former magistrate, to death in what police said was an argument over cutting onions. The case just goes to show not all self-defense claims are the result of using a gun, nor do all self-defense claims hold up. It remains to be seen if this one will, and while everyone is innocent until proven guilty, this one is looking extremely doubtful.

Apparently, the couple were preparing dinner last Saturday, and both holding knives, and got more than tears in their eyes from dicing the onions. According to the report, the man, Charles Michael Calvert, claimed he was cutting onions when his girlfriend, Marsha Linsky, “told him he wasn’t doing it correctly and was getting ‘very aggressive.’” He then told police she shoved a slow cooker toward him before coming at him with a knife. He then allegedly used his knife to stop the attack.

However, police told WPTA they believed Calvert had staged the scene finding a pair of knives on the kitchen floor lying neatly next to Linsky’s body, no onion but an onion peel in the trash. A slow cooker with spilled contents was also on the floor. Linsky had suffered “a big gash on her head and neck” as well as other defensive wounds on her body including a nearly severed thumb.

Police also found men’s clothing—a pair of pants and a shirt—with blood on them, shoe scuff marks on the floor indicating a possible struggle and blood in the shower, suggesting Calvert may have “showered and cleaned himself off before calling 911.”

It’s not uncommon for couples to fight over unusual things, but coming at someone with a knife because they are not cutting onions properly could wind up being a stretch. Calvert is currently facing one count of murder as a result of his actions.

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