Tuesday, 16 September 2014

Joseph Oberhansley


Joseph A. Oberhansley of Indiana fatally stabbed his ex-girlfriend Tammy Jo Blanton after breaking into her house. He told police that he mutilated her body and ate several of her organs.

Oberhansley — who has a previous conviction for manslaughter in Utah — was arrested after police came to Blanton's house looking for her because she hadn't shown up for work. Police said he acted suspiciously when officers asked him about Blanton's whereabouts after knocking on the door about 10 a.m.

There was a fresh cut across his knuckles . The officers searched Oberhansley for weapons and found a folding blade tucked in his back pocket, covered with what appeared to be blood and hair. An officer then walked through the house calling Blanton's name before finding her bloody body under a vinyl camping tent draped over the bathtub. Her skull had been crushed.

An autopsy revealed she died of multiple sharp force trauma to the head, neck and torso, and that parts of her heart, lungs and brain were missing. Police also found a "plate with what appeared to be skull bone and blood" on it as well as a skillet and pair of tongs with blood on the handles. Oberhansley told officers he removed several of Blanton's organs and ate them, both cooked and raw. Tissue was found in a garbage can, the affidavit said.

Prosecutor Steve Stewart said, "After you've been prosecuting for so long, you think you've seen everything. ... I've never seen this."

The Blanton case is not Oberhansley's first brush with the law. He served time in Utah after being convicted of manslaughter in the 1998 shooting death of his teenage girlfriend, 17-year-old Sabrina Elder, who had recently given birth to their son. The incident occurred in the suburban Salt Lake City home of Oberhansley's grandmother. He also shot his mother in the back and arm as she tried to defend Elder, according to the AP. Oberhansley then put the gun to his chin, and his brain was damaged when the bullet entered his frontal lobe. He was released from prison in 2012.

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