Defense: NYC cop a cannibal only in online fantasy - New York News

Wife: Officer wanted to kill me, eat others

Posted: Updated:

By LARRY NEUMEISTER and TOM HAYS

NEW YORK (AP) — The estranged wife of a police officer struggled to keep her composure Monday as she testified about discovering shocking online chats and other evidence on his computer showing he had discussed killing her and abducting, torturing and eating other women.

"I was going to be tied up by my feet and my throat slit, and they would have fun watching the blood gush out of me because I was young," Kathleen Mangan-Valle told a Manhattan jury that one chat revealed.

Mangan-Valle, 27, also read about plans to put one friend in a suitcase, wheel her out of her building and murder her. Two other women were "going to be raped in front of each other to heighten their fears," while another was going to be roasted alive over an open fire, she said.

"The suffering was for his enjoyment, and he wanted to make it last as long as possible," she said.

Mangan-Valle broke down in tears several times, but the emotional peak of the day came when a defense attorney showed her pictures of Officer Gilberto Valle in uniform feeding their newborn daughter, prompting her and Valle to openly weep as the judge sent the jury away for an afternoon break.

The drama came on the first day of testimony at the closely watched trial of the 28-year-old Valle, a baby-faced defendant dubbed the "Cannibal Cop" by city tabloids.

Valle is accused of conspiracy to kidnap a woman and unauthorized use of a law enforcement database that prosecutors say he used to help build a list of potential targets. A conviction on the kidnapping count carries a possible life sentence.

The officer has claimed his online discussions of cannibalism were harmless fetish fantasies. But in opening statements Monday, a prosecutor said "very real women" were put in jeopardy.

"Make no mistake," said Assistant U.S. Attorney Randall Jackson. "Gilbert Valle was very serious about these plans."

Defense attorney Julia Gatto argued that her client "never intended to kidnap anyone." She added: "You can't convict people for their thoughts, even if they're sick."

A college graduate and New York Police Department patrolman, Valle appeared to be leading a normal life before "things got bad," his wife said. "Weird stuff started happening."

Mangan-Valle testified her husband began asking questions about where she liked to jog, what the lighting was like and whether other people were around. Using spyware on his computer, she said, she uncovered gruesome photos and the names, heights and weights of women.

She also found that he had visited a fetish website that featured images of dead women.

"I was scared. ... I'd never seen that before," she said.

Once Mangan-Valle fled her home and reported his strange behavior to the FBI last year, agents uncovered "a heinous plot to kidnap, rape, murder and cannibalize a number of very real women," Jackson said.

The officer had attempted to contact potential victims, including a New York City elementary school teacher, to learn more about their jobs and residences, the prosecutor said. His Internet research also included the best rope to tie someone up with, recipes, human flesh, white slavery and chemicals that can knock someone out, Jackson said.

Gatto countered in her opening statement that there was "no proof of a crime here. The charges are pure fiction."

Valle, she said, had always been aroused by "unusual things," including the thought of a woman boiled down on a platter with an apple in her mouth. He found a home at a fetish website with 38,000 registered members, where regulars discuss "suffocating women, cooking and eating them," she said.

The defense has denied that Mangan-Valle was a potential victim. Valle had made clear that his wife "was unavailable for any kidnapping fantasy," the defense has said in court papers.

On cross-examination, Gatto asked Mangan-Valle if she declined to meet with the defense before the trial began.

"You're representing the man who wants to kill me," she responded. "No, I don't want to talk to you."

Valle is expected to take the stand to make the case that it was all role-playing fantasy. The defense also is planning to call experts to explain the fetish subculture and to show jurors the videotaped testimony of the fetish website's co-founder Sergey Merenkov.

Merenkov called the site "a clone of Facebook, but it is oriented to people with fetishes that are not considered standard." Asked about the most popular fetishes, he responded, "All sorts of asphyxiation" and "peril cannibalism."

Tiger Howard Devore, a psychologist and certified sex therapist who specializes in dealing with sexual dysfunction and fetishes, said the cannibalism fetish known as voreaphilia isn't common.

"For most laymen, they're going to think about it as cannibalism," Devore told The Associated Press in an interview Monday. "But what it really is, is an obsession about consuming the flesh of the other, and this can have a whole range of expressions. ... It is mostly played out in fantasy, mostly played out in role-playing."

There are well-known criminal extremes like Jeffrey Dahmer, who saved pieces of his victims' body parts and ate the flesh, Devore said, though "the instances of this kind of violence are extremely rare."

___

Associated Press writer Eileen AJ Connelly contributed to this report.


Copyright 2013 The Associated Press.

  • Local NewsLocal NewsMore>>

  • Brooklyn man charged in shooting that wounded teen bystander

    Brooklyn man charged in shooting that wounded teen bystander

    Friday, April 18 2014 7:35 PM EDT2014-04-18 23:35:59 GMT
    The NYPD has arrested and charged a suspect in the shooting of a teenaged bystander as well as another man in Brooklyn. Police on Friday charged Kareem Potomont, 21, with two counts of attempted murder, assault, criminal possession of a weapon, criminal use of a firearm, and reckless endangerment in connection with the shooting that took place near a bus stop on Flatbush Avenue on Monday, April 14.
    The NYPD has arrested and charged a suspect in the shooting of a teenaged bystander as well as another man in Brooklyn. Police on Friday charged Kareem Potomont, 21, with two counts of attempted murder, assault, criminal possession of a weapon, criminal use of a firearm, and reckless endangerment in connection with the shooting that took place near a bus stop on Flatbush Avenue on Monday, April 14.
  • Special Olympics: Athlete Jessica Spitz

    Special Olympics: Athlete Jessica Spitz

    Friday, April 18 2014 6:35 PM EDT2014-04-18 22:35:09 GMT
    Jessica Spitz, 18, is training for one of the biggest days of her life. The Commack, Long Island, High School senior will be competing in the 2014 Special Olympics USA Games in the 100-yard dash and the shot put. From the moment Jessica joined Special Olympics last year, she was hooked.
    Jessica Spitz, 18, is training for one of the biggest days of her life. The Commack, Long Island, High School senior will be competing in the 2014 Special Olympics USA Games in the 100-yard dash and the shot put. From the moment Jessica joined Special Olympics last year, she was hooked.
  • Faithful flock to Bronx church for its grotto water

    Faithful flock to Bronx church for its grotto water

    Friday, April 18 2014 5:43 PM EDT2014-04-18 21:43:31 GMT
    While a thousand people streamed into a courtyard at St. Lucy Parish in the Bronx to watch a reenactment of the crucifixion of Christ, next door a steady trickle of believers quietly collected water from that church's grotto, taking the liquid home to heal, cure, and bless.
    While a thousand people streamed into a courtyard at St. Lucy Parish in the Bronx to watch a reenactment of the crucifixion of Christ, next door a steady trickle of believers quietly collected water from that church's grotto, taking the liquid home to heal, cure, and bless.
Powered by WorldNow
Didn't find what you were looking for?
All content © Copyright 2000 - 2014 Fox Television Stations, Inc. and Worldnow. All Rights Reserved.
Privacy Policy | Terms of Service | Ad Choices