Exclusive: Neighbor Blames Police For Sword Death

Posted on November 23rd, 2010 at 4:30 am

A Brooklyn man is blaming the New York Police department for not preventing the Tuesday morning stabbing death of 55-year-old Yanika Brea.

In an exclusive interview with RumorFix, Gregory Clare said he heard screams coming from Brea's apartment just moments before she died. Police have detained her son, former Ugly Betty actor Michael L. Brea, in connection with the death.

Clare, who's lived at the Brooklyn apartment complex for 13 years, tells RumorFix that Michael "was chasing his mother throughout the house," and added he could hear her screaming, "Help! Help! Help!"

Clare tells RumorFix 911 was called after he heard the screams. "Police officers finally arrived 15 minutes later and proceeded to wait outside the door for about 45 minutes when we were telling them that there is a problem. They did not break the door down, they didn’t get into the apartment until about 45 minutes later."

Clare says police thought no one was home, "even though we were telling them that someone was screaming and that there were two people in the apartment."

Clare, whose uncle and father are the landlords of the building, says he gave authorities permission to enter the apartment. "I told them 'Knock down the door,' and they were telling me 'No, we are not gonna knock down the door!' One of the officers told me 'We’re not construction workers.' They should have been in there! If they would have reacted quicker, Miss Brea would still be here."

New York Police Commissioner Raymond Kelly defended his department's response. “It was a barricaded situation. What happens is patrol officers, if possible, wait for ESU [Emergency Services Unit] officers to come. They have additional equipment and are trained in dealing [with situations] in different ways. There were unknown weapons so all precautions were taken.  The woman was found dead in the bathroom.”

The New York Police Department says Yanika's body with multiple stab wounds; they believe a sword was used to commit the heinous crime. Her son remains in custody, but hasn't been charged. He's currently undergoing a psychiatric evaluation.

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