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Cannibal Apologises To Victim's Relatives
An axe murderer who ate his victim's brain and eyes has apologised in court, saying: "I couldn't be myself."
Tyree Lincoln Smith, a 36-year-old from Florida, has been committed to a high-security psychiatric hospital for 60 years.
In July, a Connecticut court had found him not guilty by reason of mental disease or defect.
Smith apologised for killing Angel Gonzalez, whose mutilated body was found in a vacant apartment in Bridgeport in January 2012, a month after he was hacked to death.
"I'm really sorry for what I did, that I couldn't be myself," Smith said.
"It really had nothing to do with the other person."
The apology surprised relatives and friends of Mr Gonzalez who were in the courtroom, according to local newspaper the Connecticut Post.
"We waited two years to hear Tyree say he was sorry," said Talitha Frazier, who wore a T-shirt with Mr Gonzalez' photograph.
"What he said today caught me off-guard, but I feel he meant what he said."
The Bridgeport Superior Court judges were urged by a prosecutor and social worker to protect society from Smith.
"He poses a significant danger to himself and the community," psychiatric social worker Julie Jacobs testified.
State attorney John Smriga added: "I am concerned there is an expectation he would do this to other people if he was allowed to be free."
A psychiatrist testified that Smith heard voices that told him to eat Mr Gonzalez's brain to better understand human behaviour and eat his eyes to gain vision into the "spiritual realm".