Malaysian toddler dies in ‘exorcism’: police

Exorcism A three-year-old girl was apparently smothered to death by eight people during an exorcism ritual in Malaysia on Sunday night.

The toddler died after being pinned down by her parents, relatives and the family maid with their bodies during a ritual ostensibly to chase away evil spirits in the family. [Read more...]

Conviction upheld in ‘exorcism’ torture death of 13-month-old girl

Blaine Milam The Texas Court of Criminal Appeals has upheld the conviction of a man found guilty in the 2008 beating death of his girlfriend’s 13-month-old daughter, Amora Bain Carson.

The child was beaten with a hammer, sexually assaulted, and bitten more than 20 times. [Read more...]

Belgium court charges six people in deadly exorcism of Muslim woman

Latifa Hachmi A court in Brussels opened the trial of six people charged in connection with the 2004 murder of a young Muslim woman in a deadly act of exorcism, a practice of evicting demons or other spiritual entities from a person believed to be possessed.

The woman was reportedly deceived into believing that she could not have children because she was possessed and that she had to undergo a practice of exorcism. [Read more...]

Court affirms rejection of insanity defense in “exorcism” murder

Latisha Lawson The Indiana Court of Appeals has upheld a jury’s rejection of an insanity defense in the case of a woman who suffocated her 3-year-old son by forcing him to drink oil and vinegar because he was possessed by a demon.

In June 2011 Latisha Lawson was sentenced to 62 years in prison. [Read more...]

Centre for Inquiry calls for inquiry after report that church is looking for an exorcist

Center For Inquiry An organization which promotes scientific, critical and skeptical thinking is calling for an inquiry to learn just how prevalent exorcisms are in Canada after a news report last week said a church in Saskatoon, Canada, is actively seeking an exorcist.

Church officials says no exorcism took place, and a bishop stated the church recognizes the importance of psychology and medicine to assist those struggling with mental illness. [Read more...]

Court frees ‘exorcized’ teen girl’s parents

Sweden The father and step-mother of a 14-year-old girl from western Sweden, charged with repeatedly beating and burning the girl because they “thought she was a witch”, were freed of all charges on Tuesday.

The court concluded that the girl’s story wasn’t strong enough to convict the charged four against their “not guilty” plea. [Read more...]