‘Ugly Betty’ Actor Accused of Killing Mom with Sword, Report Says
By Kiratiana Freelon on November 23, 2010 1:41pm
By Olivia Scheck
MANHATTAN — An actor who appeared in the Manhattan-based TV series "Ugly Betty" has been charged with murder, accused of killing his mother with a sword while screaming Biblical phrases early Friday morning, according to police and published reports.
Michael Brea, 31, who had a role on the hit show and in the movie “Step Up 3D,” has been identified by several news outlets as the son of Yannick Brea, 55, found stabbed to death in her Brooklyn apartment early Tuesday morning.
Police confirmed that Brea had been charged in her death later that night, having reportedly spent the day at Kings County Hospital where he underwent psychological evaluation.
"I heard a shriek and a woman yelling 'help me,'" neighbor Vernal Bent told the New York Post.
"We called 911 and we kept hearing screams and then we didn't hear them any more. Michael was chanting Biblical phrases and kept calling for Moses, Jerusalem and the 'architect of the universe'."
Brea told doctors that he believed the devil had inhabitied his mother, a police source said, according to the New York Daily News.
Neighbors complained to both papers that police took too long to enter the apartment, reportedly waiting more than 45 minutes for an Emergency Services Unit to arrive before entering the apartment, according to the Post.
Upon entering, police identified the alleged murder weapon was a ceremonial Freemason sword, which Brea's uncle said he had likely taken from a Freemasons meeting Monday night, the News reported.
Yannick Brea had worked at the Marriott World Trade Center before it was destroyed on 9/11, neighbors told the Post.
Michael Brea was identified by the film blog, Belfim.com, as the Haitian-American owner of a Subway Restaurant franchise in Brooklyn, where he was known for giving away free turkey sandwiches on Thanksgiving.