The case of

Lisa Knoefel

sabrina_zunich
Victim

Lisa Knoefel

Victim Race

Caucasian

Victim Date of Birth

1994-10-27

Victim Age

41

Date Reported
Date of Death

2012-11-16

Case Status
Incident Location

Willoughby Hills, Ohio

Body Location
Date of Conviction

2012-11-16

Body Discovered Date
Murderer

Who is Sabrina Zunich?

Sabrina Zunich was born on October 27, 1994, outside Cleveland, Ohio, to Susan Edwards and Mark Zunich. Susan and Mark often found themselves in legal troubles and struggled with alcohol and drug abuse, leaving Sabrina to be raised mainly by her paternal grandmother. Sabrina was then bounced from one foster family to another until she was placed with Lisa and Kevin Knoefel at the age of 16.

Lisa Knoefel was a social worker in the sex abuse department, and Kevin was a truck driver. The couple had two daughters between them, so Sabrina seemed to fit in. However, this was not the case. Sabrina argued with Lisa at home and began to have an affair with her foster father in 2012. Sabrina was just 17 at the time, a minor. Kevin began to talk about divorce with his friends.

Lisa, suspicious of the link between her husband and foster daughter, wanted Sabrina to leave and asked Sabrina to move out. Kevin would cry to Sabrina, saying how he thought about taking his own life because of how horrible things were between himself and Lisa. he promised he and Sabrina could have a life together if Lisa was no longer in the picture. Sabrina became convinced by Kevin’s words and agreed to kill Lisa. Kevin even gave her clear instructions on how to do so, including which knife to use for the most damage.

Sabrina Zunich Kills Her Foster Mother

It was the early morning of November 16, 2012, when 41-year-old Lisa Knoefel was brutally murdered in her Willoughby Hills, Ohio home. she was stabbed nearly 200 times while her husband Kevin Knoefel was working as a truck driver out of town. The brutal murder had taken place in front of her two daughters.

Lisa’s 13-year-old daughter Megan Zanella made the frantic 911 call. When police officers arrived at the scene, they discovered 17-year-old Sabrina Zunich drenched in blood and holding a bloody knife. She was arrested immediately. When asked why she murdered her foster mother, Sabrina told authorities that she was doing as she was told. She testified that her foster father, Kevin encouraged her to commit the murder and even told her how to do it.

Sabrina Zunich is Convicted of Murder

Sabrina pleaded guilty to aggravated murder in August 2014. She was sentenced to life in prison with the possibility for parole after 30 years. She will be eligible for parole in 2042, when she is 47 years old. Sabrina received the possibility of parole due to her cooperation with investigators. Currently, Sabrina is serving her sentence at the Dayton Correctional Institution, a state prison for women in Ohio that opened in 1987.

The judge agrees that Kevin has manipulated Sabrina. However, her crime was too serious beyond those considerations.

Kevin Stands Trial

Kevin claimed Lisa’s life insurance policy, worth more than $750,000. He spent this on his home, new cars, and flying lessons. However, shortly after, Sabrina informed authorities of his manipulation of her in the murder of Lisa Knoefel.

In 2014 Kevin stood trial for Lisa’s murder. He claimed that Sabrina acted alone out of passion after she was told she had to move out. However, texts and phone calls between himself and Sabrina were used as evidence to shed light on their relationship.

Kevin Knoefel was found guilty of two counts of conspiracy to commit aggravated murder, three counts of complicity to aggravated murder, and six counts of sexual battery for his relationship with Sabrina. As a result, he is classified as a tier III sex offender. In addition, Kevin received a life sentence with the possibility for parole after 30 years and an additional 12 years for sexual battery. Kevin is currently incarcerated at Lake Erie correctional Insitute in Conneaut, Ohio, and will be eligible for parole in 2055.

Frequently Asked Questions

Q. What happened to Lisa Knoefel?

A. 41-year-old social worker Lisa Knoefel was murdered by her foster child Sabrina Zunich on November 16, 2012. She was stabbed nearly 200 times while her two biological daughters watched. 13-year-old Megan Zanella called 911, and Sabrina was arrested at the scene. When asked why she murdered her foster mother, Sabrina told authorities that she was doing as she was told. She testified that her foster father, Kevin encouraged her to commit the murder and even told her how to do it.

Q. Where is Kevin Knoefel now?

A. Kevin Knoefel was found guilty of two counts of conspiracy to commit aggravated murder, three counts of complicity to aggravated murder, and six counts of sexual battery for his relationship with Sabrina. Therefore, he is classified as a tier III sex offender. Kevin received a life sentence with the possibility for parole after 30 years and an additional 12 years for sexual battery. Kevin is currently incarcerated at Lake Erie correctional Insitute in Conneaut, Ohio, and will be eligible for parole in 2055.

Q. Where is Sabrina Zunich now?

A. In August 2014, Sabrina pleaded guilty to aggravated murder. As a result, she was sentenced to life in prison with the possibility of parole after 30 years. This will be in 2042, when she is 47 years old. Sabrina received the possibility of parole due to her cooperation with investigators. Currently, Sabrina is serving her sentence at the Dayton Correctional Institution, a state prison for women in Ohio that opened in 1987.

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