Actor charged with killing mom with samurai sword

November 23, 2010 6:30:17 PM PST
An actor is under arrest for the murder of his mother with a sword in Brooklyn.

A neighbor says he heard a sharp, shrill cry in the middle of the night. He believes they were the sounds of the victim being murdered inside her Prospect Park apartment.

"What woke me up was a shriek of his mother. That's what woke me up," Vernal Bent said.

The piercing shriek, he believes, came from Yannick Brea. She was viciously attacked in her own apartment in the middle of the night.

When the shriek stopped, Vernal believes he then heard her son, Michael, repeating a religious chant.

"Like Jerusalem, Jesus, Aaron ah... Then the last like line I caught from him was the greatest architect of the universe," Bent said.

Yannick's 31-year old son, Michael Brea, has been charged with murder and related offenses in her death.

Police recovered a three-foot sword in the apartment he shared with his mother.

"I didn't expect that. Very nice kid. I am very shocked," his brother, Serge Marcel, said.

Family members, including Michael's twin brother, huddled outside their mothers' apartment.

"I still can't believe it," his sister Gina Dumont said. "I still can't believe it."

"Shock is an understatement for something like this. You know, out of character. It even seems like an out of body experience," Phyllis Bent said.

Neighbors here along park place are left confused. They simply cannot believe Michael is a suspect, a person they know as friendly and outgoing.

"It's not someone who you can look at and say it's a monster walking the road, someone who can flip anytime. It's not like that," neighbor Oscar Peters said.

Eyewitness News learning that Brea had appeared on the ABC show "Ugly Betty" and most recently was in the movie "Step Up 3-D".

His mother was a hotel worker.

Brea was undergoing a psychiatric evaluation at Kings County Hospital.

Police Commissioner Raymond Kelly said he had no prior arrests and was not sure if he had a psychiatric history.