Face-chewing attacker 'was religious'

2012-06-07 11:30
Ronald Poppo (AP)

Ronald Poppo (AP)

Multimedia   ·   User Galleries   ·   News in Pictures Send us your pictures  ·  Send us your stories

Miami - There was no indication the man who chewed off the face of a homeless man had a history of mental illness or was using drugs other than marijuana, the attacker's girlfriend said on Wednesday.

Yovonka Bryant said Rudy Eugene never showed any signs of violence during their four-month relationship. They often read the Bible and the Qur'an together, and often watched a religious television programme in the mornings.

Bryant, who was questioned by police after the attack but is not under investigation, described Eugene as a Christian who wanted to know more about the Muslim faith.

"He would never leave without it, his Bible, and his Qur'an was always by his side," Bryant said. Eugene would place the Bible on top of the Qur'an on the passenger seat of his car, she said.

"He was just figuring out the Qur'an. He just really picked up the Qur'an and was trying to actually get into it as he was into the Bible."

Bryant last heard from Eugene in a text message the day before the 26 May attack alongside a busy Miami highway, but she declined to elaborate on what the message said. There were no warning signs that anything was wrong with Eugene, Bryant said during a news conference in Miami.

"I felt safe with Rudy," she said. "He was happy, in a good mood."

It's not clear what led to the attack on Ronald Poppo, a 65-year-old homeless man who remains hospitalised. Poppo's family has said it had no contact with him for more than 30 years and thought he was dead.

Police have released few details about what may have led to the attack.

Autopsy results

Surveillance video from a nearby building shows Eugene, 31, stripping Poppo, and pummeling him before appearing to hunch over and lie on top of him. The police officer who shot Eugene to death said he growled at the officer when he told him to stop.

Shortly before the attack, a person driving on the MacArthur Causeway told an emergency dispatcher a "completely naked man" was on top of one of the light poles on the causeway and "acting like Tarzan".

Eugene's autopsy results are pending. His girlfriend said she thought someone may have slipped Eugene a drug, but she did not say why she thought that.

Bryant, a single mother of three, said she never saw Eugene drink and only once saw him smoke marijuana at a party.

Court records show Eugene had several arrests on marijuana-related charges. His brother has said Eugene sometimes smoked marijuana but didn't drink much or use hard drugs.

Bryant, a billing specialist for a certified public accountant, hired celebrity attorney Gloria Allred to arrange a news conference "because she thinks it is important that the public know the truth about Rudy Eugene and her relationship with him", Allred said.

- AP

Read more on:    us
NEXT ON NEWS24X

Read News24’s Comments Policy

24.com publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
73 comments
Add your comment
Comment 0 characters remaining
 

Inside News24

 
 

Fewer high-risk election areas - Mthethwa

There are fewer high-risk election areas this year compared to past elections, Police Minister Nathi Mthethwa has said while visiting Manenberg in Cape Town.

 
 

Latest elections multimedia

Watch what happened when we blindfolded Helen Zille and asked her to eat random things
13 days to elections - news you need to know
11 Julius Malema quotes you'll never forget
DA won't get 30% - Zille
 
Traffic
Lottery
 
  • Friday Cape Town - 07:40 AM
    Road name: Metro Rail
    Train services on the Southern Line are delayed due to operational problems
  • Friday Cape Town - 07:37 AM
    Road name: N2 Inbound
    STATIONARY VEHICLE in the left lane before the M5 Highway - DELAYS
 
More traffic reports...
 

Jobs in Cape Town [change area]

Jobs in Western Cape region

Trainee Engineering Technician

Western Cape
Passenger Rail Agency of SA (Corporate)
Market Related

SAP Intergration

Western Cape
Definitive Recruitment
Market Related

Service Desk Analyst

Western Cape
Datafin Recruitment
Market Related

Property [change area]

Travel - Look, Book, Go!

Escape winter, head to Mauritius

Escape winter by spending 7 nights in Mauritius' tropical bliss from R13 215 per person sharing. Includes return flights, airport transfers and accommodation. Book now!

Kalahari.com - shop online today

Mother’s Day special offers!

Spoil mom with these awesome specials that will warm her heart. Shop now!

Twisp – the smoking alternative

Buy any 2 refills for R250 and save R149. Offer valid while stocks last. Shop now!

25% off bestselling books!

The Real Meal Revolution by Tim Noakes, Jeffrey Archer’s Be Careful What You Wish for, Man’s Search for Meaning by Victor E. Frank and many more titles. Shop now!

Mother’s Day specials on appliances

Browse our range of Mother’s Day appliances to spoil and pamper mom. Offer valid while stocks last. Shop now!

DStv HD PVR Decoder now R949

The DStv HD PVR Decoder has further revolutionised the television experience with lifelike viewing, sharper images, more vibrant colours and precision picture quality. Now R949, save R550. Offer valid while stocks last. Shop now!

OLX Free Classifieds [change area]

Samsung Galaxy s4

Mobile, Cell Phones in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 24

Best bargain in big bay

Real Estate, Houses - Apartments for Sale in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 25

VW Golf 6, 1.6 Trendline (Excellent condition)

Vehicles, Cars in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 25

Samsung Galaxy Note 16GB

GALAXY Note combines the market's largest HD Super AMOLED display,...

From R3899.00

I'm shopping for:

Horoscopes
Aquarius
Aquarius

Treat yourself to something beautiful. You tend to put so much energy in making everything around you work harmoniously, and...read more

There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.
 
English
Afrikaans
isiZulu

Hello 

Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.


Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire 24.com network.

Settings

Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.








Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.