61-year-old woman charged with murder after stabbing husband more than 140 times

Palm Springs, Florida: 61-year-old Joan Burke has been charged with the murder of her husband, 62-year-old Melvin Weller after she is believed to have stabbed him more than 140 times on the night of Saturday, February 11, 2022.


Burke made her first appearance in court on Sunday, February 20 where she was denied bond. She remains in the Palm Beach County Jail on a charge of first-degree murder.


Returning home from work, Ricardo Green, 41, found his step-father's body lying in the kitchen floor in a pool of blood. Green told the emergency dispatcher that he appeared dead.


When asked if there was anyone else in the home, Green reportedly paused for a few seconds before answering that his mother, Burke, was there.


Officers arrived to the scene and found Burke lying in the master bedroom, "conscious and alert" but "mute." She was taken to JFK Hospital for evaluation and treatment to lacerations that she had on her hands.


"Joan Burke had lacerations on the palms of both hands," officers were quoted as saying by Law and Crime. "It is very common for the offender to have lacerations to the palm of one or both hands when he or she stabs another person. This is especially true when the victim is stabbed many times, as was the case with Mr. Weller's death."


An autopsy revealed that Weller, who according to family suffered with physical disabilities that made walking difficult and hampered his grip strength, had been stabbed more than 140 times throughout his body and suffered a fractured skull due to a blow from a meat cleaver recovered from the scene.


Court records indicate that she is being represented by attorney C. Lawson and that she is due back in court on March 21.