Invisible Children

Raysate Knight

Content note: Case narratives include descriptions of severe violence inflicted on children, including abuse and neglect, sexual violence, torture, and murder, as well as mentions of suicide and domestic violence. They also include photos of victims and perpetrators of violence.

raysate knight
Raysate Chain Knight, age 6, was starved, imprisoned, and beaten to death by her stepfather, Raymond Jefferson, and her mother Connie Knight. Knight had four other children, girls ages 16, 13, and 8 and a 4-year-old boy. Raysate was homeschooled.

Raysate was born addicted to cocaine and removed from her mother’s custody. She lived with her grandmother, aunt and uncle until she was 4 years old and her mother reclaimed her. Knight and Jefferson kept Raysate locked in a urine-soaked closet, fed her less than their other children, burned her with cigarettes, and beat her with thorny branches. When Raysate turned the TV on too loud in September 2001, Jefferson beat her unconscious. Knight and Jefferson did not call an ambulance for fear of the abuse being discovered, and Raysate died as a result of her injuries.

The abuse came to light when Raysate’s body was found dumped in a water-filled ditch. During the six months it took to identify her body, she was known in the media as “Angel Doe”. Her grandmother eventually identified her from a police sketch. Knight and Jefferson were arrested in March 2003 in Lafayette, Louisiana, where they had fled after the murder. Both were found guilty of injury to a child. Knight was sentenced to 50 years in prison and Jefferson was sentenced to life.

Date: September 7, 2001
Houston, Texas


Documents: Date:
Grandmother helps I.D. ‘Angel Doe’ found in ditch 03-25-2002
A Dead Child’s Tale 06-30-2002
Stepfather on trial for Angel Doe’s death 05-22-2003
TX: Angel Doe’s Killer Gets Life Sentence In 2nd Trial 08-22-2003
Home Schoolers May Be No Safer in Their
Homes Than Other Children
Connie Knight