Satanic Abuse Rumbles On?

austen27

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The more I hear about SRA the more it brings to mind seventeenth century witch hunts. There is something horribly wrong when Christians end up breaking up families whilst chasing (imaginary) satanists. :(
 
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Published: 19th January 2006

Satanic abuse: Town in shock


SHOCK waves reverberated round the Langley estate this week as residents tried to come to terms with the revelations of the suffering of the parents and children involved in the false allegations of satanic abuse more than 15 years ago.

Last week a Middleton Guardian special edition and a BBC prime-time documentary graphically illustrated how allegedly flawed interview techniques by Middleton social workers led to more than 20 children being separated from their parents, some for more than six years.

For the first time some of the victims were named and were able to give their own accounts of what happened.

This week the parents of the family that sparked off the "witch-hunt" told the Guardian there was still no closure for them. They would be fighting on to get the council to publicly admit their mistakes.

And a former Langley councillor has revealed that he warned the chairman of the Social Services Committee at the time, that the social workers were fundamentalist Christians on a mission, lacked objectivity and should be replaced.

He said the families should receive "serious compensation".

Andrew, the father of Daniel, who inadvertently sparked off the ritual abuse alert, and Julie, said that he had been gratified by the reaction of local people who had expressed their support since the programme was transmitted.

He said: "People have stopped me in the street and in the shops to say how shocked they were at the injustice we have suffered and the ordeal our family has been put through. They have seen for themselves how the social workers conducted those terrible interviews with the children.

"But there has been no complete closure for us and there will not be until the council honestly admits fully and publicly its mistakes. In the meantime we will continue our campaign for full disclosure."

Last night the family was travelling to London to appear on today’s (Thursday) "This Morning" programme on ITV.

This week a former Langley councillor, Robin Parker, told the Guardian that he tried to alert the then chairman of the Social services Committee, Councillor the Rev Paul Flowers, a clergyman, that something was going wrong.

Parker – a former Manchester City Council social services official - said: "I was a very new councillor in Rochdale at the time. I was approached by Langley councillors Kevin Hunt and Tony Heaford.

"They said that something was going very badly wrong and they were on the wrong track."

He said it was apparent that the two social workers involved were fundamentalist Christians and that could be affecting their judgement.

"I went to the chairman of Social Services and said the two social workers were on a mission and could not be objective when they believed Satan was at work, but he rejected this."

Mr Parker, who will fight the Langley seat for Labour in the forthcoming municipal elections, added: "The video interviews we saw on the BBC programme disproved the chairman’s view. The interviews were obviously flawed.

"What should happen now is that the parents and the children should be given the apology they have asked for and serious compensation considered".

It is a view endorsed by many residents of the Langley estate who believe that the estate has been wrongly maligned and that justice has yet to be done.

Langley community activist, Barbara Guisbourne-Hilton said that after 15 years of trauma for the children and their parents it was time for the council to give them a full public apology.

The mother-of-five, who lives on Windermere Road, said that when the story first broke in 1990 she found it "very frightening".

"But it soon became very apparent that there had been a gross over-reaction by the authorities," she said.

"To split the children from their parents at such an important time of their lives must have been terrible for them and left them scarred."

She said there would only be a final closure when the council came clean and the families compensated.

Carl Cooper a member of the Bowlee Park Management Board that now runs the estate said it was time for a closure.

"How can we have any confidence in social services?"

MP for Heywood and Middleton, Jim Dobbin, said that although he didn't watch last week's documentary he thought that the sooner the situation was resolved, the better.

He said: "I was on the council at the time although it was an issue that I personally was never directly involved in. The sooner this gets resolved the better, for the sake of all those that were around Langley at the time and certainly for the future of the estate, as well as for the families involved.

"I hope the whole thing is resolved amicably in due course."
www.middletonguardian.co.uk/news/s/208/ ... hock_.html
 

Ravenstone

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Bit dangerous to say that the Social Workers are Fundies and that's where they went wrong. There's a long history of this kind of phemonena, and it's not always Fundies behind it. Sometimes, the ritual abuse accusations are made against devout Christians of different denominations by those who assume that any kind of ritual involves abuse.

Better to concentrate on the sheer impossibility and implausability of the accusations, I'd have thought.
 
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Ravenstone said:
Bit dangerous to say that the Social Workers are Fundies and that's where they went wrong. There's a long history of this kind of phemonena, and it's not always Fundies behind it. Sometimes, the ritual abuse accusations are made against devout Christians of different denominations by those who assume that any kind of ritual involves abuse.

Better to concentrate on the sheer impossibility and implausability of the accusations, I'd have thought.
Dunno - the current problem seems largely to be fueled by fundies (esp. from fundie funded info from over The Pond) so while it can emerge from various different sources it is a very important aspect that needs looking into esp. if there is still a fundie network promoting this kind of thing as The Eye suggests.
 

Ravenstone

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I'm not denying the Fundie involvement in lots of cases, but I'd rather see the phenomenon itself attacked rather than attacked as a way of attacking Fundies. If that makes sense.
 
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Ravenstone said:
I'm not denying the Fundie involvement in lots of cases, but I'd rather see the phenomenon itself attacked rather than attacked as a way of attacking Fundies. If that makes sense.
Well one needn't exclude the other. It needs to be attacked as silly and the people promotin it (despite its obvious silliness) need to be exposed and scrutinised (the same if it was a group of bus conductors or candle makers who were still promoting this nonsense).
 

Ravenstone

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Absolutely. Otherwise you run into the danger of taking the same allegations seriously from Non-Fundies. The allegations usually follow the lines that, while the therapist doesn't believe in Satan, that's not important; what's important is that the 'victim' believes. Which is usually where these "I was a Breeder for Satan" stories come from.
 
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In fact one of the best ways of exposing this dangerous idea is to examine why some people would assume this was happening on such thin evidence. Clearly people have promoted this kind of thing over the centuries for a rnage of reasons. I assume here it stems from the fundies' belief that Satan is a real entity and one that is still an active danger in society (I'm reminded of those Hell Houses that Dawkins highlighted in the second part of his show) and if you believe that then SRA seems less unbelievable and believers in it may see signs where other people might see none. This would then feed into the wider network as different groups discover that SRA is "real."
 

Ravenstone

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As far as I'm aware, the phenomenon starts with the Repressed Memory Movement, which was due to a poor reading of Freud from what I gather. Before Freud developed his Oedipus/Elektra concept, he toyed with the notion of repressed memories, before discarding it. Which is probably the most sensible thing the coke-addled, sex-obsessed berk ever did ;)

This, of course, had nothing whatsoever to do with any kind of religions. However, there were some 'camps', some of which were religion based, where therapists would deal with 'body memories'. Which basically meant that if you had an ache or pain, it was caused by a repressed memory of abuse. Yep - it really was that straightforward.

A lot of the therapists involved had no training; some were self-taught masseurs/usses that diagnosed repression when massaging. Caused bunched up knots of muscles, dontcherknow.

The Courage to Heal came on the market, which basically taught that everyone had been abused - as long as you were female. That all men were abusers. That if you couldn't remember being abused, it just meant that you hadn't remembered it yet. And if you never remembered being abused, it didn't mean that you hadn't been, and you should act as though you did remember it. If you thought you might have been abused, then you were abused. If you answered 'Yes' to any of their questions, you had been abused. If you answered 'No' to any of them, you were in that marvellous thing called 'Denial' which was and is a wonderful catch-all diagnosis.

You should therefore confront your abuser. If you don't remember what they did to you, just tell them that they know what they did. If they deny it, it's because they're repressing it as well, and are also in 'denial'. If anyone asks for proof of your abuse, you should cut them out of your life. If anyone questions the validity of your allegations, you should have nothing further to do with them. If your 'abuser' refuses to acknowledge his 'crimes' then you should have nothing further to do with him or anyone who still sees him.

And so on.

The authors of The Courage to Heal have no religious affiliation whatsoever. In fact, I think they are the ones who reckon that the whole of religion is an excuse to sexual abuse women anyway.
 
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Although I'm sure it all has its roots in the whole recovered memory area the main problem with SRA in the UK is that fundies are/were sending over training videos and manuals and organising conferences on SRA over here - as they'd already "discovered" SRA in the US I suppose people were able to use that as a precedent. See what I psted above:

www.forteantimes.com/forum/viewtopic.ph ... 313#601313

Individual cases will differ in motivation and that is one reason I think the social workers were let of the hook in this (and a number of other cases) without much examination of why they did what they did. In Langley it looked like they were pursuing a vendetta against the family, In Lewis it seemed to stem from fear of outsiders, etc. but the root of this is the promotion of SRA by fundies.
 

Ravenstone

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The main thing about SRA is obviously there's no evidence to support it, because it's all run by high ranking government officials, and the police etc are all involved, so by its very nature, you're not going to get very far because all the evidence is so well hidden. :roll: ;)

And, just like any UL, it sounds like it could be true. So it should be true.

Because, like any repressed memory therapist would tell you, why would anyone make this up????
 
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Ravenstone said:
Because, like any repressed memory therapist would tell you, why would anyone make this up????
Yeah this is the one that comes up time and time again with all sorts of things that have spun off from recovered memories (SRA, alien abduction, etc.) - if they were explicitly and conciously created false memories then they wouldn't be so easily believable.

The why is at least as interesting and scary as the how.
 

Ravenstone

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The strangest thing I find about that argument is that it comes from a profession that tells us about conditions like Munchaussen, and Munchaussen by Proxy, and - well - all sorts of ones that I really can't be bothered to list now, that completely rely on fabricated evidence. For attention. To feel special. To fit in. To out-do other people.
 
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Source: Wake Forest University Baptist Medical Center

Posted: February 26, 2006

Researchers Say Criterion For Diagnosing Child Abuse Not Always Accurate
When it comes to looking for damage to the eyes to prove child abuse, new research shows that things aren't always as they seem, according to Patrick Lantz, M.D., a forensic pathologist from Wake Forest University Baptist Medical Center.

"Contrary to what many doctors have been taught, we found that number and location of hemorrhages of the eye's retina aren't always proof of child abuse," said Lantz, who reported the results today at the 58th annual meeting of the American Academy of Forensic Sciences in Seattle. "Retinal hemorrhages occur more often than most doctors think are associated with a wide variety of conditions."

Lantz found that about 16 percent of the 700 individuals he examined during autopsy had hemorrhages of the retina, which is light-sensitive nerve tissue at the back of the eye. The bleeding occurs when tiny blood vessels on the retina's surface rupture. Lantz found the hemorrhages in individuals who had died from ruptured aneurysms, falls, car wrecks, gunshot wounds, meningitis and even drug overdose.

"Our research shows that you see the hemorrhages in a lot of different situations," Lantz said. "Retinal hemorrhages occur in child abuse, but they don't always mean a child was abused. Unfortunately, many pathologists, pediatricians and ophthalmologists have been taught that retinal hemorrhages are diagnostic of child abuse unless the child was involved in a high-speed car crash or fell more than two stories."

Currently, when child abuse is suspected, doctors conduct an eye exam to look for retinal hemorrhages and other eye changes that are considered proof of child abuse. Lantz got the idea to question this common assumption after he found that another eye condition, a buckling of the retina, is not always diagnostic for shaken baby syndrome. He reported those results in the British Medical Journal.

To test his theory that retinal hemorrhages also may not always be indicative of child abuse, Lantz decided to look for the condition during autopsies to learn more about when they occur.

Previously, the only way to look for the hemorrhages during an autopsy was to remove the eyes. Lantz came up with an alternative -- performing eye exams during autopsies using a surgical headlight and a handheld lens. This simple technique is sometimes used by ophthalmologists when more sophisticated equipment is not available, but no one had ever reported using it during autopsies.

The 700 deaths were in people ranging in age from birth to 96. Causes of death or conditions associated with retinal hemorrhages included suffocation, sudden infant death syndrome, meningitis, blunt trauma to the head, ruptured cerebral aneurysms, hemorrhagic strokes, cancer that had spread to the brain, high blood pressure, bleeding disorders, diabetes and gunshot wounds to the head.

"Many doctors have been taught to look for the hemorrhages when they suspect child abuse and often will diagnose child abuse without considering other possibilities," Lantz said. "Our research shows that you see the hemorrhages in a variety of different situations in infants, children and adults."

According to medical literature, retinal hemorrhages in infants are rare except in cases of abuse. "We're finding just the opposite," said Lantz. "We've found more retinal hemorrhages in non-abuse cases than in abuse cases, but most doctors don't look in the eyes of children unless they suspect child abuse."

Retinal hemorrhages were found in 30 children under age 14, yet only 6 cases were associated with child abuse.

As one of the first pathologists to routinely look at the back of the eye during autopsies, Lantz has learned that the technique can help diagnose hypertension, glaucoma, Marfan syndrome and even diabetes. He has taught residents and medical students to conduct the examinations and published an article in the Journal of Forensic Science (Nov. 2005) on the technique.

Lantz's co-researcher was Constance A. Stanton, M.D., neuropathologist, from Wake Forest University Baptist Medical Center.


http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/20 ... 114611.htm
 

Ravenstone

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In the mid-80s, when Satanic Abuse was screamed daily from the tabloids, my nephew was born with a malformity of the lower intestine, which resulted in him undergoing a deeply unpleasant operation at about 2-3 months old, where the surgeon had to manually shift the impacted faeces. He had to go back every so often for similar procedures, and was on adult dose laxatives from a very young age. His parents and grandparents were terrified he would be examined by someone who had no knowledge of his medical history, as they would probably have had a field day.
 

Mighty_Emperor

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Updates from Private Eye (above) - two letters and a follow up on the response to the booklet:

(Eye 1151:15):

The devil's work

Sir,

Thanks for the free publicity for the Scottish Executive's excellent new National Strategy for abuse survivors, for our publications and for Laurie Matthew's ace 18 And Under Project, which supports young people suffering sexual assaults of any kind (Satanic Panic, Eye 1150). By the way, Laurie's been a Dundee Citizen of the Year - sinister!

To critics without the honesty to sign their names:

The sweeping "Satanic Panic " which wildly enthused professionals is a fabrication, invented by abusers and spread by their apologists. No one who confronted evidence of unspeakable sadistic abuse believed its reality with anything but the most profound reluctance.

The Satanic Panic Conspiracy is the only known alliance in history of evangelical Christians, militant feminists, sectioned psychiatric patients, social work managers, psychodynamic psychotherapists and Highland police sergeants — all orchestrated from California by Prof. Roland Summit.

Get real!

The Satanic Abuse Witch-Hunt is the only witchhunt in history where those supposedly leading it were its victims, and found their careers destroyed.

Who's been gullible in all this? Don't join them. Private Eye.

Conspiratorially,
SARAH NELSON,
Edinburgh.
(Eye 1152:16):

Satanic panic

Sir,

The letter written by Sarah Nelson in response to the article Satanic Panic (in Eye 1150), has puzzled me. She states: "The Satanic Abuse Witch-Hunt is the only witch-hunt in history where those supposedly leading it were its victims, and found their careers destroyed. "

Judith Jones (Dawson), a social worker in the Nottingham Satanic case, is now listed as an expert witness and living and working in London. She was part of the review team who wrongly labelled Christopher Lillie and Dawn Reed as ritual abusers in the Shieldfield Nursery Nurses case.

Also on this review team was Jacqui Saradjian, who has written ofsatanic cults. She still works as an independent clinical psychologist.

If Ms Nelson believes that their current positions are indicative of a destroyed career, I suggest that she has set her aspirations a little too high. Perhaps she was not able to watch the recently screened BBC1 programme on the Rochdale case, which was handled so incompetently by professionals that 16 children have been left with mental health problems ranging from social anxiety to depression.

Regards,
PENNY CAMPBELL,
(Accused of animal sacrifice, devil worshipping, ritual sacrifice and drinking of animal blood during the Western Isles Satanic case of 2003/4.)
(Eye 1153:11):

SATANIC PANIC

A BOOKLET called A Can of Worms: Yes, You Can! Working with Survivors of Childhood Sexual Abuse has sparked controversy among professionals and academics who specialise in this sensitive field.

As revealed in Eye 1150 (Satanic Panic), the 74-page document, published by the Scottish Executive in December 2005, lists useful contacts including organisations dealing with survivors of so-called ritual abuse (formerly known as Satanic abuse) — a notion long ago exposed as a myth.

The dangers of this nonsense still being peddled by a network of believers across the UK are not lost on people who have been falsely accused of being devil-worshipping, animal-sacrificing paedophiles, as recently as 2004 on the Scottish island of Lewis (see Letters, Eye 1152). But potentially even more widespread harm could be caused by A Can of Worms being distributed to "bealthcare, social work professionals and other frontline workers" across Scotland.

A group of eminent psychologists and rKvchiatrists has written a devastating critique of :he booklet and called for it to be withdrawn, or substantially rewritten.

In a scathing seven-page letter to the Lothian Health Board, the distributors, copied to ministers and officials from the Scottish Executive and UK Department of Health, the critics question the authors' apparent lack of knowledge of the academic literature. And they attack the advice tey give to practitioners that they should "always" look for childhood sexual abuse as the root cause of a range of mental health problems from eating disorders and depression to drug and alcohol addiction and personality disorders. "There is almost no condition that the authors do not consider a sign of past abuse," they wrote.

The booklet's recommended reading list includes a library of discredited "self help" books which suggest the reader should try to recover supposedly repressed memories of abuse. These include a much pilloried American book, The Courage to Heal, which encourages readers to believe they were sexually abused, if they think they were, or have "body memories", even if they can't actually remember it. The Can of Worms booklet also refers to body memories as if they were recognised scientific symptoms.

The letter says: "This document demonstrates an almost total lack of awareness of the necessary information and relevant literature. Consequently, it is at best, a long way from fulfilling its stated aims of providing 'good practice guidelines for working with male and female survivors'. At worst it is propagating pseudo-scientific and widely discredited beliefs about the effects of childhood sexual abuse.

"If the guidance set out in this booklet is followed, then many vulnerable people could be damaged... Some people who have not been sexually abused, but who have the 'symptoms' will be led into a false belief that they were, and may experience false memories; their mental health will also be severely damaged."

The authors of A Can of Worms are Dr Sarah Nelson, a research fellow in the sociology department at Edinburgh University (see Letters, Eye 1151) and Sue Hampson, a "person centred counsellor" with a social work background in the NHS and mental health. They both work for Health in Mind, formerly the Edinburgh Association for Mental Health, which published research by Dr Nelson on 22 adult survivors of sexual abuse in a another booklet, Beyond Trauma, in 2001.

That study was approved only after the group's ethics committee considered concerns from a project advisor, a consultant psychiatrist, that Nelson had no clinical training to qualify her to conduct such interviews.

Approval was suspended and reinstated only after Dr Nelson reluctantly agreed to notify the participants' GPs of their involvement.

Dr Nelson, a former journalist, has published many articles on child abuse, and chapters in books on ritual abuse including the notorious Orkney case. They have generally been carefully worded and measured. But the Eye has obtained a paper she delivered at a conference at Warwick University in 1996 organised by a group called Ritual Abuse Information Network and Support (RAINS), set up for child care workers and therapists who believed in satanic ritual abuse despite a government inquiry concluding in 1994 it didn't exist.

Admitting it was "not an academic paper" and not based on any formal research, and that she did not have the expertise in mental health which others might have, Dr Nelson argued that it was not surprising that many victims of satanic abuse suffered from mental health problems such as eating disorders after being forced to eat and drink such things as "human and animal flesh, blood, urine, excrement, vomit, maggoty meat and drugged drinks". She confidently estimated more than 1,650 people in Edinburgh had been involved in satanic ritual abuse.

Dr Nelson is a member of the Scottish parliament's cross-party group on Survivors of Childhood Sexual Abuse which launched the Can of Worms booklet as part of a £2m government-funded national strategy to improve services for abuse survivors.

On her university website she writes: "My major research interest is in childhood sexual abuse. Particular interests include mental health and sexual abuse." However, her PhD. from the University of Strathclyde, in 1979, was not about child abuse or mental health but loyalist paramilitaries in Northern Ireland. In a later book she explained she worked as an "unqualified social worker" to do the research.
 
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Just had contact with the lady behind this page designed to track the current apparent resurgence in SRA:

www.theisticsatanism.com/asp/

Lets hope that keeping a beady eye on the proponents and having been burned once already might keep this from getting out of hand (again).
 

OneWingedBird

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Interesting pro-SRA site here, i wouldn't say that i agree with quite a few things on there and some of it strikes me as way off base, but they have a good archive of court cases resulting in convictions for abuse ocurring with a satanic or otherwise religious context here.

It's a large page so i've cherrypicked the entries that are US or UK based and specific to satanism/occultism, and also to omit cases where the victim is an adult, or where the perps are teenagers who've taken their 'death metal' music too seriously:


September 2000, Murfreesboro, Tennessee; Alonzo South, 31, pleaded guilty to three counts of aggravated sexual battery. He was sentenced to 24 years in prison.

Overview: South admitted that on at least three occasions over the last two years he participated in satanic rituals in which a nude girl under the age of 10 was sexually touched. Court records say the child, who was the daughter of a woman involved in the satanic group, was raped in a home, the nearby woods, a shed, a pickup truck and a car. See, "Man gets 24 years for satanic-ritual rape of 10-year-old girl," The Tennessean, Sept. 30, 2000


April 2000, Nashville, Tennessee; Motion withdrawn to hold State in contempt of court.

Overview: News articles report that a Federal judge was asked to hold the State in contempt of court in February 2000 for its continued failure to provide court-ordered and doctor-prescribed mental health services to a severely traumatized 17-year-old victim of rape and occult ritual abuse. A State advocacy group, Tennessee Justice Center, filed a class action lawsuit against the state for failure to properly administer the appeals procedure for the health care plan enrollees of TennCare, (Tennessee Behavioral Health). The 17 yr. old victim was just one of the people named in the settlement but she was left without proper care until this motion was filed. In April, the state agreed to properly attend to her care. See, "Tenn. Could be in Contempt if Mental Care for Teen Inadequate", The Commercial Appeal, February 24, 2000; and "Sarah C. to get badly needed care", Knoxville News-Sentinel Co., April 18, 2000


March 2000, COURT OF APPEALS OF OHIO, TENTH APPELLATE DISTRICT, FRANKLIN COUNTY.

Shawn Ellis, Dependent Minor Child, (Franklin County Children Services, Complainant-Appellee, Carla Richardson, Respondent-Appellant). No. 99AP-725, No. 99AP-726; Permanent court commitment of children upheld.

Overview: The mother and father did not comply with the reunification plans for their children and the court stated satanic occult practices were allegedly commonplace: "After being in counseling for over three years, appellant continued to deny what happened to her children and claimed an inability to remember the abuse. There was even testimony that appellant could not recall taking blood and hair from the children as part of satanic rituals."


Sept. 14, 1999, Kitchener, Ontario; Kenneth James McMurray pleaded guilty to five counts of sexual assault.

Overview: News article reports that McMurray held himself out as a leader of a group based on the Wiccan religion. He preyed on abused teenagers and required them to engage in a series of homosexual acts which he called Mandatory Requirements which they would be tested on. He told them that they would become better people spiritually if they participated in these acts. Some members were afraid of McMurray because they thought he had special powers. See, "Guelph man admits sex assaults, guilty plea ends preliminary hearing for head of Erin cult," Kitchener Waterloo Record, Sept. 14, 1999.


August 1999; STATE OF OHIO, PLAINTIFF-APPELLEE V. KENNETH J. SMITH DEFENDANT-APPELLANT; CASE NO. 17-99-1; Status as sexual predator upheld.

Overview: Man pled guilty several years prior to sexual imposition against a child; he appealed the designation as a sexual predator. Documents state: "The trial court also noted that the presentence investigation report indicated alcohol was used, that defendant had threatened the victim, and that satanic ceremonies had been used."


February 1999, United States District Court For the District of Nebraska; Paul A. Bonacci vs. Lawrence E. King; 4:CV91-3037; $1 million default judgment awarded.

Overview: "Two counts are alleged against the defendant King in the complaint. Count V alleges a conspiracy with public officers to deprive the plaintiff of his civil rights, designed to continue to subject the plaintiff to emotional abuse and to prevent him from informing authorities of criminal conduct. Count VIII charges battery, false imprisonment, infliction of emotional distress, negligence and conspiracy to deprive the plaintiff of civil rights. Between December 1980 and 1988, the complaint alleges, the defendant King continually subjected the plaintiff to repeated sexual assaults, false imprisonments, infliction of extreme emotional distress, organized and directed satanic rituals, forced the plaintiff to 'scavenge' for children to be a part of the defendant King's sexual abuse and pornography ring, forced the plaintiff to engage in numerous masochistic orgies with other minor children. The defendant King's default has made those allegations true against him. The issue now is the relief to be granted monetarily. The now uncontradicted evidence is that the plaintiff has suffered much. He has suffered burns, broken fingers, beating of the head and face and other indignities by the wrongful actions of the defendant King. In addition to the misery of going through the experiences just related over a period of eight years, the plaintiff has suffered the lingering results to the present time. He is a victim of multiple personality disorder, involving as many as fourteen distinct personalities aside from his primary personality. He has given up a desired military career and received threats on his life. He suffers from sleeplessness, has bad dreams, has difficulty in holding a job, is fearful that others are following him, fears getting killed, has depressing flashbacks, and is verbally violent on occasion, all in connection with the multiple personality disorder and caused by the wrongful activities of the defendant King."


November 1998, Pike County, Ohio; Michael Paul Dillard, 20, was convicted of felony child endangerment for burning a boy during a satanic ritual.

Overview: Dillard used candle wax to burn crosses on the chest, genitals, arms and back of the 14-yr.old. Dillard confessed to torturing the boy, his 13 yr. old brother and a 12 yr. old friend. An accomplice held their legs while Dillard poured wax on them. "It burned," the younger boy testified. "I tried to get loose." One of the men told one of the boys to holler out Satan's name, but he refused to do it, the younger boy testified. See, "Man guilty of burning teens in satanic ritual," Columbus Dispatch, and "A Pike County man faces up to five years in prison for torturing a 14-yr-old boy", Associated Press, August 19, 1998.


May 1997, J. P. v. CLARENCE CARTER, COMMISSIONER OF THE VIRGINIA DEPARTMENT OF SOCIAL SERVICES; Record No. 1168-96-4 COURT OF APPEALS OF VIRGINIA 24 Va. App. 707; 485 S.E.2d 162; 1997 Va.App. LEXIS 310, Decided. True Finding of child molestation affirmed.

Overview: A 13 yr. old female minor was found to have molested two children in the context of satanic ritual ceremony while she was babysitting them. The kids reported to their parents and investigators that: "...[appellant] had undressed and fondled [one child] on these two different occasions, performed oral sodomy, had [him] touch her breast and sat on top of [him] and quote "hurt his penis." [Appellant] allegedly had [the other child] draw a pentagram and circle and told [him] this is where to love Satan while she fondled his penis. . . [The children's mother] said the boys reported that [appellant] talked of Satan's power and that she would kill them and their parents if they told anyone what happened. This minor's name was submitted to the central registry as a founded sexual abuser.


July 1997, Eddie Lee Sexton v. State of Florida, No. 86,132

Trial court imposed the death penalty for murder. Remanded back to Court because testimony needlessly inflamed the jury. The criminal trial was continued until August 1998. After the second trial, Eddie Lee Sexton was found guilty and sentenced to death again on Nov. 18, 1998.

Overview: Sexton was convicted and sentenced to death for the participation in the murder of his son-in-law. The court notes Sexton moved to Florida in 1993 with his family and the victim to avoid arrest and prevent authorities in Ohio from removing his children from the home. His infant grandchild, who was the son of the victim and his daughter, died under suspicious circumstances. Sexton objected to the testimony of 5 of his daughters, as cited in the appellate opinion, "that he beat them, conducted 'marriage' ceremonies with his daughters, had regular sex with them and fathered several of their children, encouraged his children to have sex with each other, made his sons compare their penis sizes and ridiculed them, practiced Satanism and engaged in other bizarre conduct, threatened his children if they discussed family matters with others, trained his children how to kill FBI agents, engaged in a standoff with police in Ohio shortly before coming to Florida, fled to Florida to prevent his children from being taken into custody, and directed the killing of his infant grandchild."

The States proposed motive for the killing was that Sexton's son-in-law knew Sexton was the father of his own "grandchildren." The prosecution wanted prior bad acts admitted to show the control this man had over his children. The appeals court thought this testimony needlessly inflamed the jury and so ordered a new trial. During the second trial, a son, Willie Sexton, said his father convinced him he had Satanic powers and sexually abused him. He also stated that he was tied up to his bed at night when he was a child, and the father gave coins to the other children to call home if anyone spoke about the abuse. See, "Court revisits murder case, son's fears", St. Petersburg
Times, September 2, 1998


April 1, 1996 ADOPTION OF QUENTIN & others. SUPREME JUDICIAL COURT OF MASSACHUSETTS; 424 Mass. 882; 678 N.E.2d 1325; 1997 Mass. LEXIS 104 DISPOSITION: Order granting petition to dispense with consent to adoption of three children affirmed.

Overview: Department of Social Services planned to adopt out the parent's children, the parent's appealed and the court briefly describes Social Services case for neglect, sexual molestation and statements of the children. While describing the past history of the father, the court writes: "In 1983, the father joined a religious organization called Orlo Templi Orientis and studied the so-called 'Satanic Bible.' In January, 1984, he was convicted of grave robbing, and sentenced to two months in jail. After release, he returned to his transient life-style, alternating between Los Angeles and San Francisco." "The eldest child, E. was diagnosed as suffering from posttraumatic stress disorder. During an interview with Dr. O'Connell, she stated that "her 'Daddy's a witch;' that 'bad witches took my picture with no clothes on;' that '[Paul, a friend of the father] calls me his girlfriend;' that [Paul] took pictures of her with no clothes on; that [Paul] said not to tell; that she and her mother were tied up together with no clothes on while her father had no clothes on;
and that the witches 'shared weenies' and tried to touch her with their weenies but that she ran away."


July 1996, In Interest of P.J.M, 926 S.W.2d 223, Missouri Court of Appeals, Termination of Parental Rights Affirmed.

Overview: This self-described satanic family had been in and out of social services for many years. Parental Rights were terminated as to three of the children. There was constant and severe domestic violence; the father continually abused the mother, including using a cattle prod to electrically shock her, shot her with a gun, cut her with a razor blade and violated her with a baseball bat. The mother then claimed she made up the story, although physical evidence was discovered, she had a stab wound in her side and she was bleeding internally. Both parents had been arrested for the rape of a teenager, but the witness wouldn't testify so the charges were dropped. Both parents had tried to commit suicide and were involved in drug usage. The mother admitted to sacrificing animals in front of her children and giving them drugs to forget the ceremonies. The children also stated that this occurred.


December 1996, Damien Wayne Echols and Charles Jason Baldwin v. State of Arkansas, 936 S.W.2d 509, Convictions and sentencing for murder affirmed.

Overview: Echols and Baldwin were jointly tried and convicted for killing three 8 yr. old boys. Their accomplice, Jessie Misskelley, confessed and implicated both Echols and Baldwin in the murders. Misskelley was tried separately. In an appellate opinion dated July 17, 1995 (902 S.W.2d 781) Echols had previously appealed his case but filed a motion specifically waiving all points concerning his death sentence. The appellate court ordered the case back to the lower court to address Echols competency to waive an appeal of the death penalty. Echols finally decided to appeal his death sentence but the sentence was upheld. One jury member received a death threat, another had received a threatening phone call during the trial. In the courts overview of the sufficiency of the evidence arguments, there were detailed descriptions of the three victims bodies, including evidence of forced sex, they'd been beaten and stabbed, and there were injuries to the genital area evidencing forced oral sex. There was evidence of castration regarding child victim, Christopher Byers. "The skin of the penis had been removed, and the scrotal sac and testes were missing."

When asked by police how he thought the boys had been killed, Echols gave them statements not yet publicly known. On the witness stand, Echols testified that he'd read these facts from the newspaper. When the newspapers were shown to him, Echols admitted the information he was referring to was not in them and he didn't get the information in question from the newspaper after all. Two witnesses testified they overheard Echols admit he killed the three boys and that he was going to kill two more. The state thought the killings had been performed in a satanic ritual and an expert witness on the occult gave that opinion also. Echols admitted to being involved in the occult, items in his home included journals that had references to "morbid images, spells, and dead children." His parents had concerns about his involvement in "devil worship". Medical records contained statements by Echols about his belief system: "People are in two classes, sheeps and wolves, and the wolves eat the sheep." He thought he obtained power from drinking the blood of others, especially from his sexual partners. In regards to whether the field of satanism has scientific validity, the court notes: "Echols next contends that Dr. Griffis should not have been allowed to testify that the murders had the 'trappings of occultism' because there was no testimony that the field of satanism or occultism is generally accepted in the scientific community. The argument is without merit, as the trial court did not allow the evidence to prove that satanism or occultism is generally accepted in the scientific community. Rather, the trial court admitted the evidence as proof of the motive for committing the murders." In regards to Jason Baldwin, a witness testified that Baldwin spoke of the murders. "He told me he dismembered the kids, or I don't know exactly how many kids. He just said he dismembered them. He sucked the blood from the penis and scrotum and put the balls in his mouth."


February 1996, Suzanne Hughes v. Department of Social Services Arlington County, Court of Appeals of Virginia, Termination of Parental Rights Affirmed. Record No. 2345-94-4.

Overview: A baby was removed from the custody of the mother after evidence of abuse. The mother was eventually diagnosed with Multiple Personality Disorder. The child was returned to the mother, but after further incidents of abuse and neglect she was taken into custody again. The mother's counselor testified that the mother stated she was involved with a satanic cult that killed adults and babies, and they had threatened her. She stated she was involved with them since she was 7 yrs. old. She reported members of the cult abducting and raping her. Under cross-examination, the mother was asked about the maternal grandparents failure in reporting her own abuse, and the court was concerned that she was living at the maternal grandfather's home. The trial judge also expressed concern over the continued existence of the satanic cult, appellant's inability to help the police prosecute a member of this cult, appellant's continued residence in the same family home where she had been verbally and physically abused as a small child, and lack of family support that was missing when appellant was an abused child. The appellate court found that the evidence of appellants participation in the cult described was relevant to the proceedings.


November 15 1995, Steven Brian Alvarado v. State of Texas, 912 S.W.2d 199, Convictions and death sentence affirmed.

Overview: Alvarado killed two people, a mother and son, during a drug deal. A year or so prior to the murder Alvarado had been in the hospital. The psychologist stated he was considered "violent and dangerous and that he had a full-blown antisocial personality disorder."... he had "no concern for the rights of others, and that he admitted selling illegal weapons, abusing and selling illegal drugs, sexually assaulting a woman, mutilating human infants in satanic rituals, and committing numerous other crimes. He was discharged after twelve days in the hospital because he was felt to be a danger to the other patients and that he was not suffering from a mental illness that was treatable, and, therefore under the mental health code had to be discharged."


August 1995, Edward Bennett v. State of Nevada, 901 P.2d 676, Murder conviction affirmed.

Overview: Bennett was sentenced to death for killing a girl. Writings were seized showing that the murder was "ritualistic and satanic." Some of these statements included: "There's a problem in this country and has a lot to do with being white. There's too many people with ugly skin."... "I need to kill somebody or tear someone apart. I got to satisfy my need, cure this thirst for blood. So as I make the sacrifice by doing it just for you and kill this child, for it is a first born, I'm giving you my soul, Satan. Where is my reward? My thirst for blood is now calm, but it shall rise again. My power is so strong I need to cause some death. For Lucifer's inside of me, and I don't want to let him out. I look in the mirror, I see him in my eyes. I feel his heart beating in my chest, and I know it is not mine. For I feel so privileged for I'm with number one. I'm so f_____powerful and my reigning has just begun as I kill and kill again. I feel my rewards come on. My power's growing even greater. I'm so f___ strong for I am the devil's right-hand man. I carry out his every chore. I make this sacrifice in his name, Lucifer the Great, blood splattered on my face from the kill I've just done.


December 1994, IN THE MATTER OF: Heather BARKER, NEGLECTED CHILD, COURT OF APPEALS OF OHIO, Case No. 441 SEVENTH APPELLATE DISTRICT, HARRISON COUNTY, LEXIS 6100, Juvenile Court Decision to Grant Permanent Custody to DHS Affirmed

Overview: At the age of 5, Heather was taken into custody by DHS due to physical injuries to her genital area. Cumulative testimony proved to the court that she'd been sexually molested by clear and convincing evidence, although there wasn't any obvious perpetrator to hold accountable. The mother was cited for neglect and was given 18 months reunification services but they did not alleviate the problems which brought the child into custody. Social Services didn't think the mother could protect the child. The child was prone to "trance-like" states after unsupervised visits with the mother and other unusual behavior. A treating psychologist and social worker thought the child had been ritually sexually abused based on her statements. A trial took place contesting these matters and the court amended the abuse complaint, based on clear and convincing evidence,to a finding of neglect as well.


April 1994, In Re: Chrystal and Tasha, Superior Court of Connecticut, Juvenile Matters, Lexis 1061. Termination of Parental Rights Affirmed

Overview: Apellate opinion cites that these children were in several placements over a period of 4 years after a finding of neglect in juvenile court. The mother was in and out of prison due to drug usage and sales. One of the children had been diagnosed with multiple personality disorder and had been subjected to Satanism. It was not clear whether the incidents took place with the biological mother or in the foster homes the child was in over the years where allegations of abuse had been confirmed. Further exploration revealed that the child connected terrifying experiences in a ritualistic, abusive church and sexual abuse with her biological mother. Contact with her mother was suspended when the child began exhibiting negative behaviors after visitations or after other types of communication.


March 1994, State of North Carolina v. Patrick S. Figured, 446 S.E.2d 838, Convictions affirmed for first-degree sexual offenses involving 3 children.

Overview: Figured had entered an Alford Plea of guilty to all three charges. The state agreed to dismiss charges against his girlfriend, Sonja Hill. The DA reindicted Sonja Hill and on April 15, 1991 wanted his guilty plea set aside on the grounds the DA had violated the agreement. The motion was granted. On March 9 1992, a grand jury re-indicted Figured and he was convicted of all charges. A news article reports that parents of two of these victims filed a civil suit against Sonja Hill and her mother who ran the daycare center. The parents alleged that their children had been forced to participate in Satan worship while being abused. The kids spoke of having to drink blood, their abusers burned Bibles and wore masks and capes. Hill and her mother did not answered the lawsuit, and a Johnston County jury awarded a $10.5 million judgment to the parents who didn't believe they'd ever collect the money but wanted other people to know that these acts do occur. See, "Johnston couple win child sex abuse suit" News and Observer, Mar 27, 1990


November 1993, COMMONWEALTH OF PENNSYLVANIA v. RICKIE JAY GADDIS, Appellant NO. 00561 PITTSBURGH, 1993 SUPERIOR COURT OF PENNSYLVANIA 432 Pa. Super. 523; 639 A.2d 462; 1994 Pa. Super. LEXIS 963, Argued March 22, 1994

Overview: In the judges own words, "These consolidated appeals are taken from the judgments of sentence imposed on February 9, 1993. Appellant was found guilty in two separate trials of more than 150 counts of aggravated assault, 18 Pa.C.S. ¤ 2702; recklessly endangering another person, ¤ 2705; terroristic threats, ¤ 2706; endangering the welfare of children, ¤ 4304; corruption of minors, ¤ 6301; false imprisonment, ¤ 2903; simple assault, ¤ 2701; prohibited offensive weapons, ¤ 908; rape, ¤ 3121; statutory rape, ¤ 3122; involuntary deviate sexual intercourse, ¤ 3123; aggravated indecent assault, ¤ 3125; indecent exposure, ¤ 3127; incest, ¤ 4302; and criminal conspiracy, ¤ 903.

Overview: "These charges arose from the horrific sexual, physical and emotional abuse and neglect by appellant, Rickie Jay Gaddis, of his minor children." Gaddis was sentenced to 235 years (plus) in prison. The appellate court affirmed his sentence but vacated his fine. There had been concern he was going to capitalize on his crimes by selling a book. The police stated at the time that the children were subjected by their parents and neighbors to ritualistic torture that included bloodlettings with a sword, satanic ceremonies, hot needles under their fingernails, sodomy, stretching and tattooing. See, "Pa. couple is charged with torturing children; Police say neighbors also took part in abuse", The Atlanta Journal and Constitution, November 26, 1991; and "Pennsylvania Couple Charged With Brutalizing Their Children," The Washington Post, November 26, 1991: and "Parents charged with Torturing their Children", Associated Press, Nov. 25, 1991


November 1992, Austin, Texas; People of Texas v. Frances and Daniel Keller, Case #924217, Convicted for aggravated sexual assault on a child; Sentenced to 48 years. Both cases upheld on appeal No. 3-92-603-CR, and No. 3-92-604-CR on Oct 26, 1994.

Overview: News articles chronicling the trial cited more than one child thought to be abused at "Fran's Day Care" in Austin, Texas, operated by the Keller's, but this particular case cites their conviction of only one child, while news reports say other charges with other children are pending. Tears were found in the child's vagina. Douglas Wayne Perry, the ex-husband of one of the two other alleged perpetrators who were former deputy constables, confessed that he, along with the constables and the Kellers, engaged in "beer and sex parties, during which several children were sexually assaulted by the adults while photographs were taken." He recanted his confession but then pleaded guilty to a charge of indecency with a child. He confessed to tearing a head off a doll and threatening the children that if they told, their heads would come off the same way. The children described ritual acts, being terrorized in a graveyard, seeing animals killed and bodies dug up and mutilated with a chainsaw.

A 6-yr-old child, who also claimed to be a victim, testified on the behalf of the 3 1/2 year old and called Fran's Day Care, "Fran's Hate Care." The defense lawyers used videos showing some the younger child recanting, saying the abuse never happened, to try to undermine the case. The parents claimed that one of the perpetrators was flashing threatening hand signals during the child's testimony. The defense also stated that the claims were "too outlandish to be believed" because the children also spoke of going on airplane rides and seeing a baby killed. A child led an investigator to a graveyard where they found animal bones. Parents of two children, who said they were abused, have filed a civil suit holding three people accountable (the three described above) for not reporting the abuse. Another mother said "I put my son in a mental hospital as a result of this abuse (by the Kellers), and it's only been through over a year of intensive psychotherapy that he's begun to partially heal." See, "6-yr-old testifies he witnessed abuse of girl", Nov. 24, 1992 , and "Kellers found guilty of sexual assault", Nov. 26, 1992, Austin American Statesman


September 1992, Eastland County, Texas. The STATE OF TEXAS VS. PHIL STANLEY ROGERS; Case No. 18, 738; Charged and pleaded guilty to "Indecency with a child, younger than 17 years, committed during the course of a ritual." Jury sentence - 99 years.

Overview: A news report [no date yet], cites that the rituals began with the purchase of a Ouija board. Items taken as evidence included books covering satanic topics, pentagram symbols, candles, daggers and wands.


April 1992, In the Matter of the Welfare of J. M. P., C9-91 -1899, COURT OF APPEALS OF MINNESOTA, Lexis 436. Termination of Parental Rights Affirmed.

Overview: By the mother's own admission, her past included "years of sexual and physical abuse, parental neglect, early and long-standing addiction to numerous drugs, serious mental health problems, and involvement in a satanic cult." Her child was taken into custody after two hospitalizations due to overdosing. The mother was involved in four incidents, three involving criminal convictions, which caused harm to children, including J.M.P. The mother tried to commit suicide, and was diagnosed with borderline personality disorder.


March 1992, Orlando, Florida; Margie Wright pleaded no contest to three charges of attempted sexual battery and two charges of attempted lewd acts and was sentenced to 5 1/2 years in prison. Jim Wright was convicted of raping and fondling five children.

Overview: Three news articles describing the case cite that this couple were charged with molesting children in the context of satanic rituals. The parents of three of the victims moved residences and the prosecutor expressed concern because the children had been threatened by the cult not to testify. The victim's parents met the Wrights through their Church. The children reported that they saw Wright sacrifice a stray dog, slit its throat and stomach and remove some entrails. Sheriff's investigators found the dog's skeleton near the Wright's trailer. The Wright's molested children during their "Magic Show." The victims said he pulled a gun out of a hat and made their underwear disappear. They stated that Jim Wright put a "bad curse" on them and said "devil words." The children described satanic symbols, chalices filled with blood and a box containing a corpse. They had been told not to tell or their parents would be killed. Maggie Wright testified against her husband while she pleaded no contest to reduced charges. See, "Convict's Wife Sentenced for Trying to Molest Kids", Orlando Sentinel Tribune, May 9, 1992; "A Family Fears That Satanic Cult will try to Silence their Sons," Orlando Sentinel Tribune, August 10, 1991; "Child Abuse Suspect Trades
Testimony for Lesser Charges", Orlando Sentinel Tribune, January 31, 1992


January 1992, THE STATE OF WASHINGTON V. Paul Ross Ingram, NO. 13613-9-II Division Two, Confession to sexual molestation and 20 yr. exceptional sentence affirmed.

Overview: Paul Ingram, former Thurston County chief civil deputy sheriff and 16-year law enforcement officer, was arrested November 28, 1988 following allegations of sexual abuse made by his daughters, then about 18 and 22 years old. Ingram waived his right to counsel and made incriminating statements. After six months of further investigation and interrogation, Ingram was charged by amended information with six counts of rape in the third degree, three counts per daughter covering July through October 1988. He tried to withdraw his guilty plea but that was denied.

Note: It's been widely reported (by the officer's involved) that Ingram also confessed to ritually abusing his children in the context of satanic ceremony, which his daughters also claimed took place. Richard Ofshe of the FMSF tried to talk Ingram out of his confession by claiming he confessed in a "trance-like" state and "proved" that by suggesting to Ingram a case scenario which very well could have happened. In reality, Ofshe's experiment was not proof of "false memories" or proof of a false confession, and the court rejected these claims. Both Ofshe and Elizabeth Loftus of the False Memory Syndrome Foundation also testified at Ingram's clemency hearing trying to help obtain his release. According to news articles and the Clemency Board Transcripts, Ingram's son also attended that particular hearing and asked the board to keep his father in prison, as did other members of the Ingram family, which the board did. See, "Felons hope for a parting gift from Lowry", Seattle Times, Dec. 12, 1996


Sept. 1988, Santa Rosa, Calif; People v. Daryl T. Ball, Court No. 14750-C, Pleaded no contest to lewd and lascivious acts with 6 child victims.

Overview: The case involved brutal sexual assault of these children in the context of a "devil worship club." The two main culprits, Charlotte Thrailkill and Daryl Ball, were caught and sentenced to prison. The Criminal Investigative Division of the Army interviewed some of these same children in their "titling" investigation of Michael Aquino of the Temple of Set. (Case above). This case was described by the prosecutor as involving multi-victims/perpetrators and ritual abuse, although Ball and Thrailkill were the only ones charged. The prosecutor described the extreme terror the children experienced and the difficulty for them to testify. During the 18 month preliminary hearing, the children testified that they were threatened to keep quiet or the perpetrators would eat their mothers hearts and make them eat it. They described being given injections (or were bled), and being tied up. Daryl Ball threatened witnesses to keep them from testifying. The children also described being molested while being filmed with a banner in the background reading "Super Duper Child Molest Day." They were forced to watch the video of their own molest afterwards. A plea bargain was struck, reportedly to spare the kids from having to testify further.

**In Sept. 1998, Charlotte Thrailkill was declared a violent sexual molest predator--the first female to have that distinction in California. See, "Thrailkill a sexual predator, Ex-SR woman first in state with designation", Santa Rosa Press Democrat, Sept. 9, 1998


April 1991, Montana. State of Montana v. Leon Lloyd Whitcher, 810 P2d 751, Conviction Affirmed.

Overview: A 30 yr. old self-described "high priest" of a satanic cult had sexual intercourse with a 14 yr. old without consent. Prior to the assault, he asked her a series of questions about initiation into his satanic cult, whether she wanted "power," and if she'd "obey a high priest." He told her to change into a black robe, lie down, and stare at a pentagram painted on the ceiling before he assaulted her.


July 1988, New York, In the Matter of DANIEL "DD" et al., Alleged to be Abused and Neglected Children, 530 N.Y.S.2d 314, July 7, 1988. Finding of Neglect Affirmed.

Overview: The mother was appealing an order from Family Court finding she had neglected her children. She had allowed visitations to continue between the father and his girlfriend even though she knew that the girlfriends children had been removed from the home for sexual abuse, and she did not question the situation until the father and girlfriend were arrested on sexual abuse charges. Social Services had investigated the case. All children had been forced by threats of physical abuse to "engage in acts of sexual intercourse...among themselves and with adults." In addition, they described participation in forced acts of bestiality, as well as involvement in satanic rituals involving the sacrifice of animals and the drinking of blood. The court cites there was evidence that the mother may have been involved in these activities as well.


August 1986, State of Maine v. Scott Waterhouse. 513 A.2d 862, Murder conviction affirmed

Overview: Waterhouse was convicted for the murder of a 12 yr. old girl. Evidence of satanism and excerpts from the "Satanic Bible" were admitted at trial for purposes of showing motive and intent. During taped conversations with detectives, Waterhouse described his beliefs about sex and destruction rituals.


February 1986, Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, v. Frank G. Costal, Jr., 505 A.2d 337, Murder conviction affirmed.

Overview: Expert testimony regarding satanism and mind control was admitted into the court record to explain the killings of a mother and her 4 yr. old daughter. The killings appeared to be in retaliation for the mother's interference in a drug deal and homosexual relationship between her husband and Costal. The state submitted evidence that the murders were performed in a "ritualistic manner." The victims were stabbed in a similar fashion, in the same pattern. Ceremonial robes, books, posters, plastic skulls and bats, and marriage licenses drawn up by Costal and signed by him as a "high priest" of Satan were seized from his apartment. A witness testified that Costal told him of attendance at human sacrifices and that 17 was the number of stab wounds required at these ritualistic killings.
 

OneWingedBird

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Rather a good article here looking at SRA from the perspective of a psychologist, whick keeps (to my mind) a good balance between circumspection and agnostisism on the subject:


What the Hell is Satanic Ritual Abuse?
From Leonard Holmes, Ph.D.,


I don't know. That's the short answer. Some abuse survivors, often survivors with severe Dissociative Identity Disorder (DID), have memories of being abused in Satanic ceremonies. These memories are usually "recovered memories" - memories that emerge later in life, although some abuse survivors report continuous memories of Satanic ritual abuse - memories which they have always had.

What do these memories mean? Does having a memory mean that the events actually happened the way that we remember them? The answer to this question is certainly "no." Research has shown that memory is fallible. We do not record the events in our life on a recorder and play them back later. We have all experienced times when our memory of an event conflicted with someone else's. The brain sorts and filters a huge amount of incoming sensory material. It then decides which very small percentage should be stored for later retrieval, and only portions of this material are stored.

Abuse survivors who have these ritual abuse memories often remember very similar things.

They remember adult figures dressed in certain clothes performing ceremonies, for example. I will not go into further detail about the common threads in these memories. Most of us are familiar with some of that these survivors report to have happened to them. They are typically hideous and gruesome memories that involve some of the worst kinds of torture and abuse imaginable.

Can these memories possibly be real? Again, I don't know. In the past therapists tended to divide themselves into camps on this issue. There was a camp of true believers who believed in the literal truth of these memories. There was another camp, represented most strongly by the False Memory Syndrome Foundation, which believed that all of these memories were false, and that they were probably implanted by therapists.

I have worked with a very small number of patients who have had such memories. The first time I heard of these memories from a patient I had no idea what was happening. I did know that I had not "implanted" the memories. They were completely alien to my experience and to anything we had talked about in therapy. I saw the need to get some training in this area and I sought it out.

The advice that I received at the time was that I should believe my patient and believe in the literal truth of her memories. (I have since come to believe that this is not the best approach - that it is best to acknowledge that we just don't know what these memories mean.) I was confronted with evidence that many other abuse survivors were telling similar stories, and I was told about "generational" Satanic cults which were networked and which coordinated the rituals around the world. I even heard whispers of an international organization called the Illuminati which coordinated these cults and which intended to take over the world in the year 1999 by taking advantage of these "programmed" Manchurian candidates which they created in these cults.

Whew. Was any of this remotely possible? I began networking with other professionals to see what they thought.

Several years later I was asked to be on a Task Force formed by the Virginia Crime Commission to study "ritual crime." Reports of these cults had reached law enforcement officials, and they were divided on whether these groups really existed. The Task Force did not reach any firm conclusions regarding this, but found no evidence of widespread ritual crimes. We heard from many therapists who treated patients with these memories, and we heard from law enforcement officials who had discovered evidence of Satanic cults which did practice. We also heard from FBI experts (Ken Lanning was one) who were very skeptical of the existence of these groups. Where were the bodies?

Some of the therapists who spoke about their practices reported that a substantial percentage of their patients had such memories.

How was this possible? Could this have more to do with the therapist than the patient?

As I discussed these issues with colleagues in the mental health community I heard some very different opinions. Some therapists were certain that the FBI agents investigating cults were themselves cult members. I was warned that the Task Force itself had been infiltrated by the cult. Other therapists genuinely did not know what to think; while others were extremely skeptical.

One very interesting group that helped the Task Force was the Wiccan community. The members that I had contact with tended to believe that Satanic cults were indeed active, and they provided information to the State Police and testified about what they knew. They took great pains to distinguish their own peaceful "white witchcraft" from the hideous practices attributed to Satanic cults.

At this point there are several possible explanations for Satanic Ritual Abuse Memories. It is important not to see these as mutually exclusive explanations, because it may be that more than one of them are at least partially true.

1. Memories of Satanic ritual abuse may be at least partially true. We do know that destructive cults exist. Nazi Germany and the KKK have taught us that people can be extremely cruel to each other. The fact that some survivors have continuous memories of these rituals lends some credence to this possibility. Even if some memories are true, some details may be distorted, or some rituals may have been staged for effect.

2. Memories of Satanic ritual abuse may be at least partially unconsciously created "screen memories." A screen memory is a memory that we create - as a screen - to protect us from the horror of a real memory. This theory suggests that patients may be protecting themselves from horrors that take place inside their family. It may be easier to believe that a cult tortured and abused you than to believe that your own parents did these things.

3. Memories of Satanic ritual abuse may be at least partially "screen memories" intentionally created by others. Some therapists and attorneys point to mind-control projects performed by the CIA and other groups in the 1950s and 60s. MK-ULTRA and Bluebird were two of the best known projects. Documents obtained by Alan Shefflin and others under the freedom-of-information act confirm that the U.S. government put some effort into creating "Manchurian candidates" who would perform dangerous missions for the U.S. government after they had been programmed through hypnosis and mind control. It is hypothesized that stories of Satanic rituals were implanted as screen memories in case these subjects began to remember being programmed.

The idea behind this theory is that the ritual abuse memories are so far-fetched that nobody would believe them. They may have been created using staged rituals, Hollywood makeup, and props in order to plant a memory that would "emerge" later.

4. Memories of Satanic ritual abuse may represent children's fantasies. While these memories usually emerge in adulthood, they almost always involve events remembered from childhood or adolescence. A child's point-of-view is very different than an adult's. The world is full of magic and monsters. The literature includes examples of memories which could not possibly be true. I have read accounts of a woman who remembered herself being decapitated during a ritual. She recounted the memory complete with an intense emotional reaction, and her head was still firmly attached.

Why such gruesome fantasies? Might it be that some abuse did occur and that the mind began adding other stuff?

5. Therapists who ask too many leading questions may indeed contribute to these memories in some patients. This does not account for the whole phenomenon, however.

None of these explanations are completely satisfying to me. As a clinical psychologist I have worked with a fairly large number of abuse survivors. As I began to get a local reputation for working with this population I began to get referrals of patients that other therapists felt uncomfortable continuing to work with. Partly through this mechanism I have worked intensely with four patients who had ritual abuse memories. Some of this work was successful, some was not, and some is ongoing. I still don't pretend to understand what is happening here, but I have some ideas.

I believe that some of these memories - in some of these patients - are relatively accurate memories of severe abuse in a group setting. I'm pretty sure that the details are not all accurate, and the childlike point-of-view has undoubtedly distorted things further.

I do not believe that there is a world-wide conspiracy that links Satanic groups together, although I suppose that this is possible.

It doesn't really matter whether you agree with me or not. The most therapeutic way for mental health professionals to approach the memories of these patients is with careful, caring neutrality. Work with them toward healing. Consider taping sessions - with the client's written permission - in order to document that you are not in the business of implanting memories. Encourage patients to find corroboration for their memories if possible, but avoid the temptation to become a detective. Seek supervision, education, and/or consultation; and be sure that you are taking care of yourself too.
 

OneWingedBird

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Might as well yank the text across as i have a couple of things to say on it:

SATANIC PANIC

The mything link

A SMALL network of doctors and therapists who believe in the existence of ritual abuse, formerly known as Satanic ritual abuse (see Eyes passim), has latched on to a relatively new theory in psychiatry and psychotherapy known as "dissociation" which is spreading fast across the UK.

They seem determined to revive the "Satanic panic" - the hunt for devil-worshipping paedophiles who go round sacrificing animals and sexually abusing children - which caused such mayhem in Nottingham, Rochdale, the Orkneys and most recently on the Scottish island of Lewis.

Ardent proponents of the ritual abuse myth help run the main organisation which represents therapists in the field of dissociation and have secured key slots to speak at a forthcoming series of conferences, seminars and training courses on the subject.

No doubt sincere in their convictions, the danger is they will influence delegates including professionals dealing with vulnerable children considered at risk of abuse and adults suffering from various forms of mental illness from anorexia and depression to self harm and drug or alcohol addiction.

Dissociation is said to be a psychological mechanism to block out memories and reduce the overwhelming distress caused by trauma. In extreme cases patients develop numerous personalities or "alters" so they can "switch" between them and escape the memories.

The term Dissociative Identity Disorder, (DID), was formerly known as Multiple Personality Disorder. It is linked to the theory of "attachment", in which trauma can apparently "disrupt our attachment bonds".

Only a minority of therapists who work in this field are believers in ritual abuse. But the Eye has discovered that some practitioners do share a belief in ritual abuse, despite the fact that numerous police investigations across the US and the UK have found no forensic evidence and a government inquiry in 1994 concluded it does not exist.

Three of the 13 committee members of the United Kingdom Society for the Study of Dissociation (UKSSD) are active promoters of the existence of ritual abuse.

A founder member and UK training co-ordinator is Sue Richardson, an early "recovered memory" therapist who now describes herself as an "attachment-based" psychotherapist, based in Middlesbrough.

Richardson was a key social worker involved in the Cleveland child abuse controversy in 1987 when more than 120 children were taken into care after they were wrongly diagnosed as having been sexually abused. She later joined forces with social workers from Nottingham - involved in the first Satanic panic - in a group called the European Network for Backlash Research to counter a growing public backlash against false allegations of child abuse. Richardson became a vocal believer in ritual abuse and is a regular conference speaker.

Other committee members listed on the UKSSD website include a psychotherapist from Bedford, described as a representative from the Trauma and Abuse Group (TAG), which is running training courses on "Ritual Abuse Awareness" and DID in September and October, and a paediatrician from Nottingham, representing Ritual Abuse Information Network and Support (RAINS), an organisation set up to support people who work with survivors of ritual abuse (see Satanic Panic, Eye 1153).

Dr Joan Coleman, a psychiatrist and coordinator of RAINS, claims to have talked to more than 600 professionals who have worked with survivors of "sadistic ritual abuse" and spoken with more than 200 victims (see Letters, Eye 1155).

Several of the forthcoming national conferences and training courses on dissociation and attachment theory feature sessions on ritual abuse. One of the speakers is Valerie Sinason, a psychoanalyst, child psychotherapist and director of the Clinic for Dissociative Studies in Harley Street, London. She is a member of the Centre for Attachment-based Psychoanalytic Psychotherapy (CAPP) with which she is co-organising a series of continuing professional development courses entitled Working with Dissociation in Clinical Practice Using an Attachment Perspective from April to July at a cost of £450 or £350 for members. As part of this series, in June Sinason is running a course on "Ritual Abuse and Secondary Traumatisation".

Sinason was also a key speaker at a seminar in London in February 2006 run by the International Attachment Network on the subject Cults, Attachment and Religion. Her topic was "Spiritual abuse, attachment and the family".

Sinason, author of a book Treating Survivors of Satanist Abuse, previously conducted research on "sadistic ritual abuse", funded by the Department of Health, in which she claimed to have interviewed 76 children and adults who made allegations involving sexual abuse and murder. In 2000 the Metropolitan police investigated her allegations but found no evidence.

In published interviews one of her usual themes is the difficulties faced by therapists having to deal with the general climate of disbelief in the existence of ritual abuse and the need to persuade practitioners and the public to accept its reality.

Richardson, Coleman and Sinason regularly collaborate. Coleman contributed a chapter on "Satanic cult practices" in Sinason's book, and they were the main participants in a research study on sexual and ritual abuse featured prominently on TAG's website.

In July next year Sinason and Richardson will be the main speakers at the national conference of TAG, a charity, whose steering group was set up by the Association of Christian Counsellors to provide training courses for counsellors working with survivors of ritual or extreme childhood abuse.

The initial Satanic panic, it should be noted, was spread by Evangelical Christians and therapists on the international conference circuit.

Dissociative disorders (eg DID, DDNOS, PTSD) are listed inDSM IV, the 'bible' of psychiatry, which was published in 1994, and Dissociative Identity Disorder existed in earlier versions of DSM as Multiple Personality Disorder. I'm not entirely sure that makes dissociation quite the 'relatively new theory' that the article suggests.

Saying that Ritual Abuse is Satanic Ritual Abuse rebadged is very misleading, as many therapists regard RA as any abuse that is frequent, repetative, formalised and/or systematic - there doesn't have to be a satanic (or any religious) element to it at all.

I'm not sure when Sadistic Ritual Abuse came into play as an expression, but it strikes me as rather needless, and adding an unhelpfull blurring between RA and SRA.
 
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Yes its a tricky one.

BRF is right - it does dismiss disocciation.

I am still unsure about "ritual abuse" - I'd still say that is abuse using rituals. Repeated abuse (without rituals) would be more like... systematic abuse.

------------
Anyway some replies to that article (Eye 1159:16):

Hit and myth

Sir,
What is it with Private Eye (Satanic Panic — The Mything Link, Eye 1158). The only one panicking is the (still) anonymous author of these articles. Those of us who recognise the reality of Satanist Abuse have long since ceased to panic, despite our continuing horror regarding the practices entailed.
Incidentally, dissociation is hardly a "relatively new theory" within psychotherapy. It was described by Pierre Janet in the early 1900s and later, of course, by Freud.
However, all this is history. We know that the government researcher did an effective demolition job in 1994, so why the current panic?
Yours,
DR JOAN COLEMAN, MRCPSYCH., RAINS Co-ordinator, Guildford.

Sir,
Please may I post your piece (Satanic Panic -The Mything Link, Eye 1158) on my web page so that I can correct the factual errors made. (I am sure your readers do not need help in untangling innuendos or smears.)
Thank you for publicising the new course on Attachment and Dissociation. As a result of the new neurobiological research and international standardised research on attachment patterns, there is far greater awareness of the impact of trauma on mental distress. My talk on Spiritual Abuse was about ritual abuse within mainstream religions (such as paedophile priests and altar boys) which can destroy some people's sense of their religion as a refuge. I was also concerned with the way people's family attachment patterns either enhance or damage their belief systems — something even more crucial when we consider suicide bombers. But perhaps your reviewer is only interested in destructive acts which come from a Satanist background.
DR VALERIE SINASON, Via email.
 

OneWingedBird

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I'd still say that is abuse using rituals.
It is, but the rituals can be purely secular and/or invented by the perpetrators. The closest parallel i can think of would be something akin to a nonconsensual sm scene, with the ritual element/modus operandi probably being refined and elaborated on over time.
 

rynner2

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Grandmothers arrested over satanic sex abuse at school
Richard Owen in Rome

Three women teachers were among six people arrested yesterday accused of sedating and sexually abusing children as young as 3 at a school near Rome.

The teachers — two of whom are grandmothers who had taught at the school and at Sunday school for decades — are said to have part in the repeated abuse of 15 children aged 3 and 5 for a year, filming them in sexual acts with satanic overtones at the teachers’ homes and in a wood.

The others arrested were a female caretaker, a former producer of children’s programmes for the state television station RAI, and a local petrol pump attendant. The television producer is married to one of the arrested teachers.

The alleged abuse — in the town of Rignano Flaminio, 25 miles (40km) north of Rome — came to light when some of the children began describing their “games” to their parents. They drew pictures of a “man in black” who wore a hood and drank his own blood, and said they had played a game in which “a wolf chases a squirrel and eats it”.

They were warned that if they told their parents about the “games”, they would be “taken away from their mothers by devils”. If the truth were to come out and they were asked who had taught them to perform sexual acts, they were to say “my father”.

The parents also reported bruising and swelling around their children’s genital areas and that they had returned home from school in a confused state. Police say that the children were given tranquillisers and told they were sweets.

The six face charges including kidnapping, indecently assaulting minors, obscene acts and group sexual assault. Police had to protect the teachers from angry parents as they were taken away, with one shouting: “May you rot in jail for ever.”

Ottavio Coletta, the Mayor of Rignano Flaminio, said that the town of 8,000 people was enveloped in “a poisonous climate of hatred and vendetta”, and Father Erri Rocchi, the parish priest, said he still believed the teachers were the victims of “malicious tongues”. He said that the women were church-goers and taught at Sunday school.

Pasqualina Pellegrino, a former teacher at the school, also said she could swear on the innocence of the teachers and the caretaker. “I simply do not believe they could have done this,” she said.

Some parents, however, complained that the mayor and the school authorities had initially failed to take their suspicions seriously, and the school had not suspended the teachers even after the inquiry began ten months ago. “They accused us of trying to ruin the lives of respectable people,” one said.

http://www.timesonline.co.uk/tol/news/w ... 706340.ece
 

OneWingedBird

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the follow up on that could be interesting... and it would certainly be solid (if utterly revolting) evidence if the police have or could locate the film...
 

JamesWhitehead

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"He said that the women were church-goers and taught at Sunday school. "

"And if it wasn't for your darned support we'd have gotten clean away with it!" snarled a witch as she sniffed the first curls of smoke from the straw. :?
 

OldTimeRadio

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It's going to be interesting to follow this Italian case over the next several months to see whether we're dealing with a genuinely evil cult - or simply another McMartin School.

The McMartin School case exploded like sticks of dynamite when it broke in the American news media in 1984 (as I recall). Everybody (including yours truly) seemed in agreement that a dozen or more teachers, including "respectible" women in their sixties, had conspired for years to sexually torture pre-school children.

I remember attending a dinner party with 20 other literate adults the day after the news broke. I found myself very much on the defensive during the table discussion. I thought that the defendants should all be given life in prison; everybody else wanted them put to death. (Even though they were not charged with capital crimes.)

But within months it became obvious to nearly everybody that there had been NO child abuse at the school. All the defendants were eventually found not guilty.
 

OneWingedBird

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"He said that the women were church-goers and taught at Sunday school. "
emotive, but i don;t think there's any evidence that sunday school teachers are any more or less likely to abuse than anyone else... but as for priests, one could get the impression otherwise...
 

OldTimeRadio

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BlackRiverFalls said:
... but as for priests, one could get the impression otherwise...
Except that the total number of abusing priests doesn't seem to have been any more than about three percent of the total. Or four percent if we include the hierarchy who enabled them.

It was the lowly parish priests who were most upset by the creeps they occasionally were forced to serve with but their repeated protests to the hierarchy for years fell on deaf ears.
 
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