Teenager who tried to dispose of man's body in wheelie bin filled with acid is jailed for life

A teenage bodybuilder who tried to dispose of a man's body in a wheelie bin filled with sulphuric acid has been jailed for life, with a minimum term of 23 years.

George Knights was today (7 January) sentenced after he was found guilty of murdering Stephen Chapman in Rochester in October 2020.

Chapman had gone to Knights' house on Friday 23 October to discuss the sale of cocaine.

Knights stabbed the 38-year-old in the head in what police described as a 'drugs deal gone wrong'.

Stephen Chapman, a father of five, died after being stabbed in the head.

Inspired by the TV series Breaking Bad, Knights then attempted to dispose of Stephen Chapman's body in a bin filled with the corrosive substance in order to evade capture.

Two days later, he called Kent Police to report a group of people were attempting to break into the property he was living at.

The group of people were there looking for Mr Chapman after being concerned for his wellbeing. They contacted Kent Police after they saw Knights run from the property.

Mr Chapman had come to George Knights' home in Rochester to sell him cocaine. He never left the property alive. Credit: ITV News Meridian

Officers searched the property and found various items including blood-stained clothing, class A and B drugs and Mr Chapman’s iPhone and bank card.

They then discovered a wheelie bin, which belonged to a different address, in the conservatory. Mr Chapman’s body was found inside, with four empty bottles of sulphuric acid located nearby.

Knights denied murder but was found guilty in June 2021 following a three-week trial at Maidstone Crown Court.

Police described Knights as a 'callous, cold individual' who showed no remorse, after he attended a house party hours after carrying out the murder. 

Knights was handed a life sentence, to serve a minimum term of 23 years.

Speaking after the sentencing hearing, Detective Superintendent Gavin Moss, from Kent Police, said: "Throughout this case Knights has shown no remorse or empathy for his actions. He is a callous killer who robbed Stephen Chapman of his life, and on top of this his attempt to dispose of the body deprived Mr Chapman’s family of an opportunity to see him for a final time."