Amish sect leader seeks release from jail

First an ad for the coffee maker the editors of Religion News Blog use both at home and at work. Read the reviews, and find out why coffee connoisseurs LOVE brewing coffee with the ...

The jailed leader of a breakaway sect of Amish accused of orchestrating a series of beard-cutting attacks on other Amish across Ohio has again asked a federal judge to let him out pending trial, saying he’ll allow electric lines to be installed at his house so that he can be monitored by the government.

The Pittsburgh Post-Gazette writes

Samuel Mullet Sr., 66, also said in a motion filed in U.S. District Court in Cleveland that he is not a danger to anyone and that his family in the village of Bergholz, Jefferson County, needs him to help maintain his household through the winter because the building has no central heating.

CNN report on the beard-cutting attacks

But in a follow-up story the Post-Gazette’s Torsten Ove reports

Everything worth listening to. All in one place. Pick a plan and start listening for free.

Federal prosecutors in Cleveland say Amish sect leader Sam Mullet should not be let out of jail under any circumstances pending his trial in March on hate crimes charges in connection with a series of beard-cutting attacks against other Amish in Ohio.

Mr. Mullet, 66 — bishop of Bergholz in Jefferson County, Ohio — has been jailed since Nov. 23, when the FBI raided his compound and rounded him up with six of his sons and followers.

Since then he’s tried repeatedly to get released from custody, but each time the Justice Department has argued that he is a danger to society, citing the violence of the attacks, Mr. Mullet’s absolute control over his community and the death threats prosecutors say he made against some of his own children and Jefferson County Sheriff Fred Abdalla. […]

On Friday … Assistant U.S. Attorney Thomas Getz said even if Mr. Mullet does connect to the power grid, monitoring will only serve to alert authorities if he leaves the area.

If that happens, he said, law enforcement faces the dangerous prospect of having to go get him and risk a confrontation with a man the government describes as a cult leader with a “penchant for violence.”

More articles about the ‘Bergholz Clan’

We appreciate your support

One way in which you can support us — at no additional cost to you — is by shopping at


Our website includes affiliate links, which means we get a small commission — at no additional cost to you — for each qualifying purpose. For instance, as an Amazon Associate Religion News Blog earns from qualifying purchases. That is one reason why we can provide this service free of charge.


(Listed if other than Religion News Blog)

More About This Subject

This post was last updated: Friday, May 9, 2014 at 3:32 PM, Central European Time (CET)