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Hawaii News

Murder defendant claims voices drove him to slay

A 20-year-old man awaiting trial in the fatal stabbing of a woman he probably did not even know said a voice told him that the woman was a vampire and he is a vampire slayer, according to state court records.


Sato Franklin Sigrah is charged with murder in the Oct. 11, 2008, early morning stabbing death of 27-year-old Lyola Mesebeluu and the attempted murder of Mesebeluu’s husband and 2-year-old daughter.

Honolulu police said Sigrah entered the Mesebeluus’ Kapiolani Boulevard apartment through an unlocked door and attacked the family with a kitchen knife from the apartment. Neighbors told police Sigrah tested and opened other front doors.

When three court-appointed mental health experts examined Sigrah at Oahu Community Correctional Center last year, he told them he does not remember how he wound up in the Mesebeluus’ apartment, where he was arrested, because he blacked out after drinking at least half a 1.75-liter bottle of vodka and three beers after work the night before. His blood-alcohol content was 0.19 2 1/2 hours after his arrest, more than twice the legal threshold for drunken driving.

However, since his transfer to the Hawaii State Hospital last September, Sigrah has told hospital staff and at least one of his court-appointed examiners that a voice told him he is a Japanese Superman and vampire slayer with special powers, including the ability to fly. He has also said he believed Mesebeluu was a vampire.

Hospital staff put him on suicide watch in February and March because he reported he tried to hang himself with a bedsheet.

In their reports to the court, mental health examiners say they believe Sigrah is faking hearing voices and depression.

A hospital worker told one of the experts, "I don’t think he’s suicidal. He’s always calling women on different units like he is a playboy."

The hospital says Sigrah tried to fight a male patient who was talking to a female patient he was interested in. And later, another patient knocked him unconscious after Sigrah punched the patient six times in the head.

The staff later transferred Sigrah to a different unit to separate him from a female patient with whom he developed a romantic relationship. Sigrah also tried to escape from the hospital once and was caught as he was about to make another escape attempt.

He suffered a concussion and an ankle injury March 30 that landed him in the Queen’s Medical Center for three days when he fell off a fence he was trying to scale.


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