Peter Bryan Mug Shot
4 October 1969 |
London, England, UK
|Criminal penalty||Life Sentence|
|Motive||Paranoid schizophrenia and cannibalism|
|Number of victims||3|
|Span of killings||1993–2004|
|Date apprehended||Originally 1994|
Bryan was born in London on 4 October 1969, his parents were immigrants from Barbados. He was the youngest of seven children. He left school aged 14 or 15 and obtained employment at a clothes stall.
In 1987 Peter Bryan lived in the Flying Angel, Custom House, east London. It was here that he attempted to throw another resident from his sixth floor window. There was a struggle and his intended victim escaped leaving Bryan with a deep gash to the head. The initial attack by Bryan was totally unprovoked. The victim was questioned by the police about the gash on Bryan's head but no further action was taken by the police against the victim or Bryan. He was later sent to Rampton Secure Hospital in 1994 after admitting the unlawful killing of 20-year-old shop assistant Nisha Sheth, who was beaten to death with a hammer in 1993. By February 2001 the nursing staff thought he had made considerable progress in regard to his "behaviour, attitude, maturity, relationships, anger and insight." Bryan was transferred from Rampton in June 2001 to the John Howard Centre after a six-month trial leave project agreed by the Home Office. He was released into the care of a psychiatrist and social worker. After applying to a Mental Health Review Tribunal in 2002, he was moved to the Riverside Hostel in north London where he was allowed door keys and could come and go as he pleased. Psychiatrists and social workers were remarking that there had been a "continued improvement" in his behaviour. In October 2003 psychiatrists noted there had been "a continued improvement in his mental state" and talked of plans for a move to more independent accommodation. In November 2003 his mental health social worker wrote to the Home Office stating that matters had settled down and there were no further concerns. It was thought that he "did not present any major risks."
In January 2004 social workers applied for the transfer of Bryan to "low–support accommodation". But, Bryan was then transferred to an open psychiatric ward at Newham General Hospital for his safety after allegations that he had indecently assaulted a 16-year-old girl close to the hostel. In February 2004 he walked out of the mental health unit in Newham, east London, and killed friend Brian Cherry. Police were called after neighbours heard screams and weapons, including a hammer, were found strewn around the flat. When police caught up with him, he was cooking the dead man's brain in a frying pan.
Bryan was remanded to Broadmoor special hospital after appearing in court over Mr Cherry's death. Two months later, while on remand in Broadmoor Hospital, Bryan killed his third victim, a fellow patient, Richard Loudwell, aged 60. He battered him on the head and tied a ligature around his neck. Mr Loudwell died in hospital later that day. Bryan said that if he had not been interrupted he would have eaten Loudwell's flesh.
On 15 March 2005, Bryan pleaded guilty at the Old Bailey to two manslaughters on the grounds of diminished responsibility.
Judge Giles Forrester said: "You killed on these last two occasions because it gave you a thrill and a feeling of power when you ate flesh."
Bryan, who suffers from paranoid schizophrenia and is a self-confessed cannibal, was jailed for life for killing two people. It is likely that he will never be released and will die in prison.
- Hazlett, Alexandra (3 September 2009). "Series of blunders frees schizophrenic cannibal Peter Bryan, who kills 2 more people". NY Daily News. Retrieved 23 November 2009.