Former Cannibal Corpse Guitarist Sentenced for Bizarre Crimes in Florida

Wess Haubrich
Patrick O'Brien.Hillsborough County Sheriff’s Office/Fire Rescue

His crimes included assaulting an officer with a deadly weapon and residential burglary.

Former Cannibal Corpse guitarist Pat O’Brien has been sentenced for his role in a bizarre series of crimes in 2018.

That December, O’Brien forced his way into a family home then ran after police while brandishing a knife – all while his home was on fire.

O’Brien reportedly called relatives hours before the crimes happened. Those who he conversed with say he was agitated and could not stop talking about “the rapture” and the “aliens landing.”

O’Brien’s residence near Tampa was filled with weapons – including flame throwers – as it burned. Fire marshals found most of the weapons – including explosive devices – in the home the day after the fire subsided. Firefighters had to retreat as the bullets kept inside kept exploding.

The weapons cache included several locked gun safes, about 50 shotguns (including one with an illegally sawed-off barrel), 10 semi-automatic rifles (with a couple of AK-47s), two “Uzi-style” rifles, and about 20 handguns. One of the flamethrowers was kept inside the dwelling, the second outside it.

The ATF was called in to assist in the investigation, though the only federal crime at play here was sawing off the shotgun’s barrel.

O’Brien received time served + five years’ probation + a $23,793.45 fine. He must also undertake random drug checks and community service.

Journalist and dogged student of all things forensic, Wess Haubrich, examines the nitty, gritty details you didn’t know about infamous (and not so infamous but equally weird) crimes and their unseen motivations. Thanks for reading!

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Former editor, now dogged-maverick journalist and researcher covering the crime beat. I examine the weird, absurd, and downright infamous in American crime both here and at Real Monsters podcast. Contact:


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