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Yannick Brea was a 9/11 survivor that worked at a local hotel. Tragedy struck the 55-year-old mother when her son, "Ugly Betty" actor Michael Brea, allegedly killed her with a samurai sword at her Brooklyn apartment. The 31-year-old Michael Brea was found and arrested in a nearby room in the apartment after police came. Brea was clenching a bible at the time of his arrest.
"Michael was yelling, 'Repent, repent, sinner, sinner, over and over again. He was screaming, 'You never accepted Jesus.' It was real loud," one neighbor told The New York Daily News. The violent and bizarre language was what prompted building neighbors to call the police, who arrived quickly to the murder scene. But reports indicate that they were very slow to enter the apartment.
It took police almost an hour before they entered the apartment -- a time window that local police officers defend as protocol in these types of situations. "This is a barricaded situation and that is handled by Emergency Service Unit," Police Commissioner Ray Kelly told the Daily News. "What happens in a barricade situation is that responding patrol officers wait for Emergency Services forces to arrive." By the time police did enter the apartment, Yannick Brea was dead, according to the Gothamist.
There are obvious police and public safety concerns involved in these situations. Michael Brea's bizarre, erratic behavior demanded special precautionary measures. Still, many neighbors believed that it was those measures that ultimately lead to the death of Yannick Brea.
Michael Brea does not have a criminal record and he is undergoing a psychiatric evaluation, which will help to determine his mental state. Police will want to know whether he was able to appreciate the gravity and nature of his actions, and thus able to stand trial.
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