Two men in Kentucky were sentenced on Tuesday for forcing another man to eat his own beard. At knife point, of course. The defendants, Troy F. Holt, 47, and James E. Hill, 51, are now on probation and, if they do not further break the law for the respective periods of five and four years, they will have all charges against them dismissed.
How did we get here?
Although the event, er, crime took place in 2009, "details about the beard-eating were not widely known until last week." According to the Lexington Herald-Leader, the victim, Harvey Westmoreland and his brother Joseph were held at knife-point in a barn on Willisburg Road in western Anderson County. After some heavy drinking that according to Holt, "go out of control" Holt whipped out a pocket knife, cut off Westmoreland's beard and forced him to eat it while accomplice James Hill stood by, sling blade at the ready.
After about 30 minutes of beating, beard eating and taunts, Holt and Hill let the Westmorelands leave, reports the Herald-Leader.
What kind of charges might result from forcing a man to eat his own beard, you ask? Holt and Hill were each charged with terroristic threatening, unlawful imprisonment and misdemeanor assault. Under Kentucky law, in case you might be curious, a person is guilty of terroristic threatening (in the third degree) when he threatens to commit any crime likely to result in death or serious physical injury. Second degree involves some sort of weapon of mass destruction.
What would make a man do such a thing? Well, that part of the story is a bit unclear. Holt claims the assault was caused by an argument over a woman. Westmoreland says it was over a riding mower.
No hard feelings, though. Harvey Westmoreland puts it like this: "I wished it had never happened, to tell you the truth. But I don't wish neither one of them ill will. I don't wish them no harm. I hope they both have a good Thanksgiving and a good Christmas and a Happy New Year."