Former Cannibal Corpse guitarist Pat O'Brien has been sentenced in a court case involving an odd series of incidents that transpired nearly three years ago in Florida. According to Loudwire, O'Brien has been sentenced to time served, as well as five years of probation and a fine of $23,793.45. He has also been ordered to continue drug and alcohol evaluations and was told to avoid alcohol and controlled substances. Lastly, O'Brien will be given random drug screenings, and he must perform 150 hours of community service.
The sentencing steam from several charges against the musician: burglary of an occupied dwelling, assault and aggravated assault on a police officer. On Dec. 10, 2018, firefighters were working to stop a fire that was overtaking O'Brien's rented home. As they fought the blaze, gun ammunition inside the house began exploding and continued throughout their attempt to quench the flames. As this was happening, a call came into police about a burglary and assault at a nearby home. O'Brien had entered the residence without permission and then shoved a woman to the ground when attempting to flee.
He was later found hiding behind a fence near his own home, charging the officers with a knife when they approached him. The homeowner whose house O'Brien illegally entered told reporters that he had been speaking incoherently, and appeared to be hallucinating. When the firefighters finally put out the flames at the guitarist's house, more than 80 weapons and thousands of rounds of ammunition were discovered. Three skulls were found as well.
O'Brien was booked into the Hillsboro County Jail and was placed in an anti-suicide vest for his initial court appearance. He was released on Dec. 14 on $50,000 bond. Following the incident, Cannibal Corpse issued a statement, expressing support for O'Brien and stating that they want "nothing but the best" for him. Vocalist George "Corpsegrinder" Fisher later admitted to crying when he saw O'Brien wearing the anti-suicide vest in court.
Cannibal Corpse is an American death metal band that originally formed in Buffalo, New York in 1988, but is now based out of Tampa, Florida. O'Brien is originally from Hebron, Kentucky, and joined Cannibal Corpse in 1997, replacing guitarist Rob Barrett, who later rejoined the band in 2005. O'Brien played on all nine of Cannibal Corpse's albums that were released from 1999 to 2017 but has since been replaced by Erik Rutan, a death metal producer whom the band has been close with for years. The band released their 15th album, Violence Unimagined, on April 16. It is the first Cannibal Corpse album in more than two decades to not feature O'Brien.