Earlier news reports that Haitian-American actor Michael Brea—who had a bit part in one episode of Ugly Betty and played a background dancer in Step Up 3-D—had murdered his mother with a samurai sword while shouting Bible verses obviously lacked a certain patina of crazy. Fortunately, Brea gave a certifiably insane interview to the New York Daily News from his current resting place in Bellevue, where the actor averred with “white-hot intensity and unflinching confidence” that he had acted according to God’s will, because his mother had a demon inside of her. Also, the whole awful series of events had something to do with black magic, the Freemasons, and The Matrix. Somehow it gets even weirder and darker from there.
Brea described arriving at the decision after a visit from God himself:
"I was sleeping in my bedroom. God came above my bed and reached his arm to me. I said, 'God, is my time on earth over?' I heard a voice say, 'Yes Michael, today is your last day.' I asked if I could say goodbye to my family."
That afternoon, following the alleged divine intervention, Brea says he received another sign after visiting a Masonic Temple in Harlem, which he had joined the previous week. There he was approached by a stranger who attempted to “put a curse on him” by handing him a Freemason pin, upon which he began feeling ill and took the subway back to his home in Brooklyn. On the train, various strangers supposedly began speaking to him about his mother:
"I felt like Neo from 'The Matrix.' I began hearing voices and feeling powerful," Brea said. "They were asking about the difference between mom and mother. It was a sign."
After coming to terms with what he believed to be his destiny, Brea then went to his bedroom, lit candles, arranged several saint cards around him, and placed “a dagger and a 3-foot ceremonial Freemason sword by his side”—a sword Brea says his father gave him when he was a child, but which investigators say he stole from the temple. (“It’s a powerful sword,” Brea said.) When his mother asked for his help preparing dinner, he saw another sign: “"I looked at these chickens lying dead in the pot and a voice told me it was a sacrifice. It was black magic.” Brea’s mother then asked why he hadn’t helped her, and things quickly turned disturbing and violent:
"She had the voice of the demon. I opened the door with the dagger at my side and the sword. I asked, 'Do you believe in God?' She said, 'No, Michael no,' and began screaming. I began slashing her like this… I didn't want to kill her right away. I wanted to give her time to get right with God... I was slashing my mom and I heard the police knocking on the door yelling, 'Michael, open up, Michael, open up,' but I knew they wouldn't open the door and stop me because the spirits were protecting me… I just kept cutting her. No one could stop me. I was doing the work of God….I'm named after a saint myself —Saint Michael. He was protecting the house from the police. They weren't allowed to enter the apartment… I heard voices telling me how powerful I was, saying 'Oh he's good.’”
Despite all the crazy, Brea maintains that he's in the right: “’Grand Architect of the Universe means God,’ he said, referring to an expression neighbors said he shouted as he was being removed from the bloody scene. ‘I was praising God. To you it might sound silly, but in my culture demons are very real.’” Actually, nope, nothing about this sounds silly. Nothing at all, really. Anyway, Brea remains in Bellevue awaiting trial for second-degree murder; meanwhile, the rest of his family has pledged its “unwavering support.”