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Gloria Allred and girlfriend of South Beach cannibal Rudy Eugene to hold news conference

9:48 AM, Jun 6, 2012   |    comments
Gloria Allred
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UPDATE: Miami cannibal's girlfriend speaks publicly for the first time

Earlier Report:

MIAMI (CBSMiami) - High-powered Los Angeles attorney Gloria Allred is planning a news conference in Miami Wednesday afternoon in connection with Miami's infamous "Causeway Cannibal" case.

Allred is representing Yovanka Bryant, one of the girlfriends of 31-year-old Rudy Eugene, the man shot and killed by police after brutally attacking and eating the face of a homeless man over Memorial Day weekend.

GRAPHIC PHOTOS: South Beach cannibal victim photos

At the news conference, Bryant is expected to talk about relationship and last conversation with Eugene, the day before the attack and whether or not she felt there were warning signs that could have avoided the attack and subsequent death.

Allred will talk about why she's representing Bryant and the numerous cases of cannibalism being reported in the U.S. and other parts of the world.

The Memorial Day "zombie attack" has become one of South Florida's most notorious crimes and has captured headlines all over the world.

Surveillance video from The Miami Herald shows 65-year-old Ronald Poppo being attacked by Eugene in broad daylight alongside the busy MacArthur Causeway. Eugene was shot dead on the scene by a Miami Police officer when he refused to stop ripping at Poppo's face with his mouth and even growled at the officer who ordered him to get off the homeless man.

Police have not released a motive for the attack on Poppo, who had been homeless for decades.

The head of the Miami Fraternal Order of Police, Armando Aguilar, speculated that Eugene may have been high on LSD or "bath salts," which can cause psychosis as the body overheats.

Eugene did strip off all of his clothes as he walked from Miami Beach to the mainland over the MacArthur Causeway before encountering Poppo and beginning the unprovoked, savage attack.

The assault continued for 18 minutes while drivers and cyclists streamed past. It will take several weeks for the toxicology reports to determine if drugs played a role in this bizarre attack.

Another woman, who had an on-again, off-again relationship with Eugene for five years said she believed Eugene must have been drugged unknowingly, or cursed. The girlfriend, who didn't want to be identified, said the "Causeway Cannibal" was nothing like the man she knew and loved.

"Rudy Eugene was not no zombie or 'Miami Zombie' like they're saying. He was a human being and that wasn't him," she said.

She described him as a "sweet loving gentleman" and a "hard working man" who worked at a car wash and dreamed of owning his own business.

She said she believes he was drugged unknowingly. The only other explanation, she said, was supernatural, that someone put a Vodoo curse on him. The other girlfriend, who unlike Eugene is not Haitian, said she has never believed in Vodoo, until now. "I don't know how else to explain this," she told The Miami Herald.

She said she has no idea what caused the vicious attack, but she saw no signs of any violence in the nearly five years they lived together.

"That wasn't him, that was his body but it wasn't his spirit.  Somebody did this to him," she said.  She described Eugene as religious and always had his Bible with him wherever he went.

Meanwhile, Poppo remains at Jackson Memorial Hospital facing months of treatment to rebuild his features and psychological care. The Jackson Memorial Foundation has set up a fund to assist him.

If you want to contribute, or would like more information, contact Neighbors for Neighbors at 305-597-4404.


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