BJC Blog RSS Feeds
Home arrow Blog arrow Amish Hate-Crimes Leader Sentenced to 15 Years in Prison
Amish Hate-Crimes Leader Sentenced to 15 Years in Prison E-mail
Written by Don Byrd   
Friday, 08 February 2013

A judge in Ohio reminded convicted Amish hate-crimes leader Samuel Mullet, Sr. that the First Amendment has helped protect that religious community, but insisted it did not allow him to traumatize members of that faith he deems insufficient. Sentenced to 15 years in prison, Mullet insisted he was not a cult leader, and the actions of his followers - forcibly cutting off beards of others in the community - did not rise to the level of a hate crime. The judge disagreed.

"The victims were terrorized and traumatized," U.S. District Court Judge Dan Aaron Polster said in sentencing leader Sam Mullet Sr., 67, who sat without emotion.

The judge said the defendants had violated the constitutional rights protecting religious practice that had benefited them as Amish — such as an exemption from jury service and allowing Amish children to leave school at age 14.

"Each of you has received the benefits of that First Amendment," Polster said.

 AP reported an appeal from Mullet's attorneys is likely.

 
 
New Hampshire Supreme Court Debates Aid to Religious Schools Program
The New Hampshire Supreme Court last week heard oral arguments in a challenge to the state's tuition tax credit program. Businesses in the state are receiving tax credits for paying private school tuition through a scholarship incentive program. Because many of those funds are going to ...
 
New Police Commissioner Abandons NYPD Muslim Surveillance Program
A new police commissioner in New York has brought new policies. William Bratton put an end to the Demographics Unit, an undercover surveillance operation controversial for targeting Muslim communities, including maintaining files on individual houses of worship. (The BJC and others last yea...