RITUAL ABUSE PERPETRATED BY PSYCHOPATHS AND FRAUDS
One of the seven classifications of ritual abuse that we have identified
is perpetrated by psychotic or psychopathic individuals, or by people pretending
to be serial murderers. Some contain
Satanic symbolism. We do not consider this to be Satanic
Ritual Abuse because either:
||The acts are primarily motivated by the
perpetrator's mental illness, not any Satanic religious beliefs, or
||The stories they tell to explain their actions are fictional.
Some examples are:
||Sandy Charles, 14, of Saskatoon, SK, Canada stabbed and
smothered a 7 year old boy in La Ronge SK on 1995-JUL-8. He and an 8 year old
accomplice carved 10 to 15 strips of flesh and fat from the body. He took the
body parts home, cooked them, and ate them. Charles was suffering from
bizarre delusions and becoming schizophrenic when he watched the movie
Warlock and its sequel Warlock II at least 10 times. One media
source also quotes The Exorcist. The Warlock series are horror movies
which describe Gothic Satanist rituals and concepts, including
the belief that if a person drinks the liquefied fat of an unbaptised child,
they would gain special powers - in this case, the power to fly. He told the
police "There's a spirit in my room that gave me these thoughts". He
had been contemplating suicide but a voice told him that it might be just as
good to kill someone else. At his trial in 1996-JUN, a psychiatrist testified
that the accused "did not see the victim as human but as an object whose
death was necessary to fulfill his deluded plan". On 1996-AUG-2, he was
found not guilty by reason of insanity. The judge concluded that Sandy
Charles "was suffering from a mental disorder so as to be exempt of
There was no organized Satanic group involved in this murder. Charles was
driven by his own delusions and mental illness, rather than by any religious
belief in Satanism. The source of the child's particular delusions were
based on the "Gothic Satanism" hoax promoted by the movies. That hoax is in
turn based on late Middle Age and Renaissance beliefs which are unrelated to
Satanism and Witchcraft
as they were practiced, then or now.
||Richard Ramirez has been called "the chief example of a
serial killer with Satanic overtones". 1 He was named The Night Stalker
from his habit of randomly entering homes at night and murdering and/or
raping people who lived there. He created Satanic graffiti in the homes
which he entered, made some of his female victims swear allegiance to Satan
and showed an inverted pentagram on the palm of his hand during the trial.
He apparently was not involved in any Satanic group. His crimes seem to
have been influenced by a heavy metal rock song "Highway to Hell".
||David Berkowitz is a serial killer who is called The Son of
Sam. The author of a book claimed that he was a member of
The Process Church and that Berkowitz was a look-out who did not take
part in all of the killings. 2 The Church was incorrectly described as
being Satanic; they were in fact a Christian sect. The police investigation
revealed that he was in fact a lone murderer. Berkowitz has since claimed to
have been a Satanist, and to have converted to Evangelical Christianity in
prison. He claimed that the "Sam" in "Son of Sam" came from the name of the
Celtic God of the Dead, Samhain (which he pronounced "Sam-hane"). His story
is suspect, because his pronunciation of the name of the holiday is
incorrect, the Celts never had a God of the Dead, there is no God called
"Samhain" and because Satanists do not worship or recognize Celtic Gods. In
reality, Samhain means "end of summer", was a Celtic seasonal day of
celebration, and remains a Wiccan Sabbat. It would appear that Berkowitz
developed his Satanic story after reading some anti-Wiccan publications.
Jessie Lloyd Misskelley, Jr., Damien Echols, and Charles Jason Baldwin
were found guilty of the assault, rape, mutilation and murder of three
8 year old boys in the West Memphis AR area on 1993-MAY-5. Much
controversy exists over these convictions. A movie called "Paradise
Lost, The Child Murders at Robin Hood Hills" was released in early
1997. It was written and directed by Joe Berlinger and Bruce Sinofsky.
Like their earlier film, Brother's Keeper, this movie was
described as "a doorway into a kind of social investigation of a
community under siege." 3
There was considerable publicity in the press about this case. Newspapers
and other media often did not differentiate between Wicca,
other Neo-pagan religions, religious Satanism and evil
Satanic cults that were believed by local residents to be active thoroughout
the country. Considerable anger was directed by members of the public at a variety
of Neo-Pagan religions during the investigation and trial of this case. The
hatred erupted into an attempted mass execution by stoning during a march which
was organized to promote religious tolerance and freedom in nearby Jonesboro AR.
Many deaths would probably have resulted, if it were not for the prompt
and action of over 5 area police forces who protected the demonstrators.
We conclude that there was no significant linkage to any Satanic group in
this case, and that the crimes were perpetrated by one or more sexually sadistic
psychopaths. Whether the convicted trio are guilty of the crime is
debatable. A detailed description of the crime and
trial is available.
Some of these murders appear to be linked primarily to the mental illness of the
perpetrators. That is, the mental illness comes first; it then leads to
an interest in Satanism. In other cases, the Satanism connection is claimed only after the
criminal is caught; he uses it to support his "the Devil made me do it"
defense. Sometimes, the Satanic link is provided by sensational
reporting in the media. These murders were caused by the mental illness or
homicidal behavior of the perpetrator, not the
There is abundant evidence that a small number of individuals suffering from
a psychosis or who are psychopaths sometimes kill others ritually. One or
two cases a year surface in North America. Other murders are accidental, having
been caused by brutal beatings or suffocation which occur during Christian
exorcisms. These also are quite rare -- perhaps on a year is reported in
the media. So the problem is thankfully
uncommon (when compared to the approximately 30,000 annual homicides in the US and Canada).
- Sorry, we have lost the citation.
Maury Terry, "The Ultimate Evil," (1989).
- Liam Lacy, Film Critic, The Globe and Mail, Toronto ON, 1997-FEB-21, P. C3
Copyright © 1996 to 2006 by Ontario
Consultants on Religious Tolerance
Latest update: 2006-JAN-15
Author: B.A. Robinson