Indiana man, 36, who murdered his 46-year-old ex-girlfriend before he ATE parts of her brain, lungs and heart is jailed for life without parole
A southern Indiana man convicted of killing his ex-girlfriend and eating parts of her body was sentenced Tuesday to life in prison without parole.
Joseph Oberhansley, 36, was found guilty on September 18 of murder and burglary in the death and dismemberment of Tammy Jo Blanton six years ago.
36岁的约瑟夫·奥伯汉斯利(Joseph Oberhansley)于9月18日被判犯有谋杀和入室行窃罪，罪名是六年前杀害并肢解塔米·乔·布兰顿(Tammy Jo Blanton)。
He maintains his innocence and said he plans to appeal his conviction, despite telling police in the days after Blanton's death that he killed and ate her, according to News and Tribune.
Blanton's mother told Oberhansley he was 'pure evil' as she addressed him from feet away during Tuesday's hearing.
The body of Blanton, 46, was found at her home the morning of September 11, 2014, badly mutilated with more than 25 sharp force injuries and multiple blunt force injuries, authorities have said.
Oberhansley testified that 'two black guys' had been at the victim's home when he arrived around 4am that day and said they were responsible for Blanton's death and knocking him out.
He awoke when police knocked on the door looking for the victim.
Oberhansley has continued to claim that two black men killed Blanton, telling reporters in his way to and from court hearings, as well as making the claim to the jury during his trial.
'I did not kill Tammy Blanton,' Oberhansley said outside the courtroom Tuesday, according to WDRB. 'Two black guys did.'
Blanton's body was found by police in her bathtub with parts of her skull removed.
Officers also found a 'plate with what appeared to be skull bone and blood' on it.A skillet, a pair of tongs with blood on the handles and tissue were in the rubbish bin.
An autopsy revealed Blanton died from multiple stab wounds and that parts of her heart, lungs and brain were missing.
Police have previously said Oberhansley admitted to the crimes, including 'cooking a section of her brain and eating it'.
Witnesses who testified at the trial included two officers who responded to her home the day of the killing and a 911 dispatcher who fielded Blanton's call, in which she told the dispatcher that Oberhansley was trying to break into her home.
A police officer who arrested Oberhansley told jurors that they found a knife and a brass knuckle device in his pocket that had blood and blonde hair on it.
Clark Circuit Judge Vicki Carmichael sentenced Oberhansley Tuesday based on a jury recommendation.
He was also sentenced to six years to be served concurrently on the burglary charge, the News and Tribune reported.
'I want you to look me in the eye and tell me you did not do this,' Blanton's mother said to him before he was sentenced.
'You're just pure evil, and you're just lucky to be able to live out your life breathing.'
Oberhansley argued back at her, saying he was a'highly religious man'. The judge was forced to intervene as the two spoke back and forth for a few moments, News and Tribune reported.
'You are a monster. Rot in hell,' another family member said.
At the time of the murder, Oberhansley was free on parole for fatally gunning down his girlfriend Sabrina Elder, 17, in a drug-fueled jealous rage in 1998.
He also shot his mother in the back and fired at his sister before tucking the weapon under his chin and pulling the trigger to give himself a 'partial lobotomy'.
Oberhansley was found mentally not competent in October 2017 to be tried. He was hospitalized for more than six months at Logansport State Hospital after the judge ruled he wasn't capable of participating in the trial.
But a doctor from Logansport later filed a report certifying that Oberhansley was competent and he was released back to police custody.
In November 2018, a judge decided that Oberhansley was fit to stand trial based off the doctor's report, which found his competency had been restored during his time at the psychiatric hospital.
Yet Oberhansley'sfirst trial ended abruptly in 2019 when the judge declared a mistrial after a prosecution witness brought up his past drug use and prison time while testifying in front of jurors.
When his second trial began in September, jurors were warned they would be shown crime scene photos worse than any horror film.
They were drawn from Allen County in northeastern Indiana because of the intense media coverage the case has received in the southern part of the state.
Oberhansley has claimed that he does not believe his conviction will stand as he alleges there were issues with the trial.
'We knew this day was coming but that doesn't make it any less devastating,' his attorney Bart Betteau said after the sentencing Tuesday.
'We don't feel that justice was served here. We don't feel that that was appropriate for him.
'This was a mental illness case from the very beginning so to say we're troubled by how it came out is an understatement.
'The appropriate thing would have been to involve mental health authorities, get him whatever treatment is necessary and if he needed to be held in a mental health facility, so be it, if the people who were qualified to make the decision made the decision that he was a danger to others and would continue to be,' Betteau added.
'I don't think it's any secret that Joseph didn't ask for mental illness, Joseph didn't ask to be the way he is, but he's still a human being and should be treated like a human being. So nobody's at fault here, including Joseph.'
Oberhansley's attorneys had requested during trial that he be returned tothe mental health ward at the same Indiana prison where he has been held in recent months.
He had also been charged with rape but was found not guilty.