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Cult film obsession 'drove accused to kill'

From Edinburgh Evening News dated 7 October 2003

A MURDER accused has told how repeatedly watching a cult vampire film drove him to kill.

Former security guard Allan Menzies told the High Court in Edinburgh how he had become obsessed with the film Queen of the Damned and had watched it around 100 times.

The 22-year-old, of Fauldhouse, West Lothian, claimed the film’s main character Akasha - played by the late actress and singer Aaliyah - would visit him in his bedroom and that the pair had struck a deal in which he would achieve immortality if he killed people.

Menzies said: "To put it bluntly, after I had seen the tape so many times I wanted to go out and murder people." He added that after the killing he had become the character "Vamp".

Menzies’ defence counsel, Donald MacLeod, asked him: "Are you telling us that you now believe you are a vampire?" Menzies replied: "Yes." His advocate then asked: "Do you believe that you will gain immortality?" Menzies said: "Yes."

But a psychiatrist raised the possibility that Menzies was pretending to be a vampire in the hope he would be declared mentally ill and therefore escape a murder charge.

Dr Derek Chiswick told the court that Menzies was an "emotionally disturbed young man" - but he did not believe that he was mentally ill.

Menzies has admitted that he had killed his lifelong friend Thomas McKendrick at his home in Lanrigg Avenue, Fauldhouse, after he insulted a character in the movie.

But Menzies denies murdering Mr McKendrick and attempting to defeat the ends of justice.

He earlier told the court how he drunk two cupfuls of his victim’s blood and ate a part of his skull after the killing. He said he was now a vampire and immortal.

In the witness box, Menzies said yesterday that a Bowie knife, a kitchen knife and a hammer were used in the attack on Mr McKendrick, 21, of Church Place, in Fauldhouse.

He said Mr McKendrick had come around with a tape of Queen of the Damned and after watching it together he had borrowed it.

The jury has been told that Menzies offered a plea of guilty to culpable homicide on the grounds of diminished responsibility but that was rejected by the Crown.

Earlier, Menzies told how he and Mr McKendrick were at his home on the morning of December 11 and a row broke out over the film. He said Mr McKendrick insulted Akasha, who Menzies said was standing in front of him at the time.

Menzies said the pair ended up in the kitchen, where he had earlier left out a Bowie knife and ox liver for his ferrets. Menzies added: "He started saying ‘you can’t believe in vampires’. At this point I picked the Bowie knife up and stabbed him in the neck three or four times."

Menzies said he then stabbed Mr McKendrick in the face, the shoulders and the back.

Menzies said he got a hammer from a drawer in the kitchen and as he approached his friend, McKendrick ran up upstairs to Menzies’ bedroom.

Menzies followed him and said he hit Mr McKendrick over the head with the hammer and he collapsed. Menzies also claimed that Akasha was there at the time of the attack, but was "displeased" with him because he had allowed Mr McKendrick to insult her.

He said he was angry and that was why he had attacked his friend - but insisted he had no regrets. "I knew I had to murder somebody. If you don’t murder anybody you can’t become a vampire."

Dr Chiswick, 58, said

that while Menzies may have had fantasies relating to vampires they were not driven by any mental illness.

"It does occur to me one possibility is that they are manufactured to avoid conviction for a crime of murder," he said.

The psychiatrist added: "The other possibility is that they are used by him to psychologically cope with an appalling and horrific act of violence." The trial continues.

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Guest Wellington


This one definitely deserves some rest. Or should have sticked to Sesame Street...

I would love to hear Frank's description of the killer and see the final confrontation between both. But I do not think Frank would be one to read Rice, just a feeling...


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  • 2 weeks later...
Guest Sixth Seal
Geez, if he was going to choose a film to kill people over, you'd think that he could've at least chosen one that didn't suck.   :thinking_big:  :wink_big:
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Guest The_0ld_Man

Here here!

    I agree..I felt quite boned by that piece of tripe. Somewhere Anne Rice is holding a revolver to her head repeating the phrase "Why did I sell the rights?"


T_0_M :Owls_Ouro_Large:

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Geez, if he was going to choose a film to kill people over, you'd think that he could've at least chosen one that didn't suck.   :thinking_big:  :wink_big:

I loved that movie.    I though Stuart Townsend made a better Lestat than Tom Cruise.   And anyway, some of the 14 deleted scenes (on the DVD) show things that bring the movie closer to the book.

Be Seeing You,

David Blackwell

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  • 4 months later...

Britain ever so slighty behind US ?....

This from tonights newspaper.....

New bid to get into serial killers' minds

POLICE want to interview every serial killer in the UK in an attempt to better understand how they operated and identify how early arrests can be made in future cases.

Scotland Yard said it ordered the research in response to the Washington sniper attacks in which ten people were murdered.

A spokesman said: "Following the case of the sniper who terrorised parts of the US, consideration was given to the possibility of such a case occurring in the UK.

"Although accepting the tragedies of Hungerford and Dunblane, with the very limited availability of such weaponry, it was felt that a more worthwhile area for research was with serial killers.

"The possibility of early identification of a series [of murders] will allow for early response and the possible prevention in the numbers of murders within the series."

Even though some killers will refuse to help, detectives hope others will talk to them.

The other types of murder being analysed include honour killings, ritual murder, contract killings, homophobic murders, attacks on lone females, murders of pensioners and domestic violence killings.

Police officers want to know how murderers initially avoided detection, to identify ways of making an early arrest in future cases.

Where possible, the detectives who were originally in charge of their cases will conduct the interviews. One killer who may be visited by detectives is Scot Dennis Nilsen.

He recently lost a High Court battle for the right to continue working on and publishing his autobiography.

Nilsen, 57, admitted killing and butchering 15 young men, most of them homeless homosexuals, at his north London home.

The former policeman was jailed for life in 1983, with a recommendation he serve a minimum of 25 years, on six counts of murder and two of attempted murder.

He was later made the subject of a "whole life" tariff.

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