Huppie blames booze, drugs, mental illness for violent rape
Before he brutally raped and slashed his female neighbour, Ryan Huppie says he was on a two-month bender of booze and drugs, coupled with strange visions of a "lizard’s eye" that he thought was giving him special powers.
Yet, he has no memory of the violent incident that left an Edmonton school vice-principal with deep scars across her face and neck, the 23-year-old testified yesterday at his attempted murder trial.
"If there was anything that I would be able to take back, it would be that night," he said. "It was my mental illness and the drugs that made me snap."
Huppie, at times crying, told court that he would never hurt a woman and, in fact, used to attack those who did when he worked the streets as a hardened drug dealer.
"I hate it because it was done to me," he testified. "I’ve assaulted people who’ve done it to people."
From the age of six, he said, drugs and alcohol had been a fixture in his life, becoming a daily binge to drown the flashbacks of his own childhood abuse.
By the time he was living in a downtown condo complex, he had also begun speaking with the "lizard’s eye," asking it for advice and extra strength, he said.
On Feb. 17, 2004 he hosted a party, he said, drinking excessively while taking a multitude of drugs. The next thing he remembers, he told court, was waking up and seeing blood splattered across his hands and face.
His victim has testified that she awoke in the middle of the night with Huppie, her next-door neighbour, standing over her bed with a butcher knife, saying, "I’m here to rape you and I’m here to kill you."
The 33-year-old fought off the assault for two hours, she said, offering money or jewelry before she feigned death twice. She suffered nine stab wounds and multiple cuts across her body.
Huppie admits that he attacked the woman that night, but his defence lawyer, Laurie Wood, is arguing that he’s not criminally responsible due to a mental disorder.
As he testified, the victim sat in the back row of the courtroom, only catching his glance once when he directly apologized.
"I’m sorry for what happened," he said. "I wish I could be forgiven."