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Salt Lake man charged with murdering stepfather in bed

Salt Lake man charged with murdering stepfather in bed

(Salt Lake County Jail)

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SALT LAKE CITY — A Salt Lake man was charged Tuesday with murdering his stepfather by stabbing him while he was in his bed.

Charles Anthony Petrie, 30, of Salt Lake City, is charged with murder, a first-degree felony, and use of a dangerous weapon by a restricted person, a third-degree felony.

Just before 1 p.m. Saturday, police were called to 756 E. 1700 South where they found two men — one holding a baseball bat — standing over Petrie, who was on the ground. Officers were told that Petrie had stabbed Johnny Postlethwait who was "on the bed surrounded by a large amount of blood," according to charging documents.

A brother told police that Petrie had returned home the night before — after he was released from jail — and got into an argument with Postlethwait. When the fight was done, Petrie "made a comment about 'shanking' or 'sticking' Mr. Postlethwait," the charges state.

The next morning, family members say Petrie was "acting normally," joking around and baking cookies with the children in the home. But not long after, family members heard Postlethwait scream from his bedroom and found Petrie kneeling on the bed over him, according to the charges.

"He's killing me," Postlethwait allegedly said.

When family members pulled Petrie off Postlethwait, they saw "a knife buried in Mr. Postlethwait," investigators wrote in the court documents.

Petrie had been released from the Salt Lake County Jail about 9 p.m. Friday, according to jail records. The stabbing occurred less than 15 hours later.

In June, Petrie was convicted of aggravated assault for choking his brother's girlfriend. As part of the conditions for his plea in abeyance, Petrie was ordered to receive treatment for substance abuse, anger management and receive a mental health evaluation, according to court records.

On Jan. 12, a warrant was issued for his arrest for failing to appear in court. He was booked into jail on Jan. 16.

Petrie was also charged in Salt Lake County Justice Court on Jan. 17 with drug possession and interfering with an arrest. He was also convicted of disorderly conduct in June, and lewdness in August, according to court records.


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Pat Reavy is a longtime police and courts reporter. He joined the team in 2021 after many years of reporting for the Deseret News


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