29-year-old Wisconsin man Young J. Choi is behind bars today after he stabbed his neighbor to death with a sword. According to neighbors, the stabbing caps off a week in which Choi angrily ranted about God, the Devil and the universe while demanding people call him God.
A criminal report says Choi repeatedly stabbed and slashed his neighbor, Dustin Vanderheyden, because he wanted to marry Vanderheyden’s wife. Choi told the man’s wife earlier in the week that he wanted her to leave Vanderheyden because he was evil. Choi said she should be with him instead. The wife told authorities she did not make much of the comment because she did not think Choi was serious.
On Friday, Choi attacked Vanderheyden with a large sword. David Gerard, a fellow tenant in the apartment, heard Vanderheyden screaming for help during the incident and went to see what was going on. He thought Choi was assaulting the man with a decorative sword, but discovered otherwise when Choi sliced his hand when he tried to intervene.
"I reached for his hand to try to stop him but he jerked it and he cut me," Gerard recalled. "I was just in shock because I didn't realize it was a blade."
Gerard’s intervention gave Vanderheyden enough time to retreat to his apartment, where he called police.
When officers arrived at the complex, they found a non-compliant Choi still wielding his sword. After police restrained the man, he gave a bizarre explanation for his crime.
Choi said the murder was “fate and destiny” before giving police this strange and rhetorical statement.
“What do you want me to tell you? Want me to say I feel bad about it? Are you checking my humanistic nature? Checking all my psychological bounds? Or am I just a ruthless killer?” he said.
Choi is now in jail on $1 million bond. He told police he has no attorney and plans to represent himself in court.
Vanderheyden died during surgery following the incident.
Gerard spoke to the Journal Sentinel about Choi’s odd behavior leading up the murder.
"He's always challenging or threatening anyone who passes by, or sometimes no one," Gerard said. "Sometimes he's just yelling out his window at nobody. I guess something like this is eventually bound to happen with someone like that.”