Tag: Kirtland cult

The News-Herald, December 23, 2014

On October 24, 2006 self-proclaimed prophet Jeffrey Don Lundgren was executed for the murder of a family of five.

In 1989 Lundgren had formed a cult after he was dismissed in 1987 as a lay minister of the Reorganized Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints, now known as the Community of Christ — a sect of the Mormon Church.

He claimed that passages in the Bible told him to kill the family, the members of which he said were lacking in faith.

In an unsworn statement at his 1990 trial, Lundgren told the jury that he and his cult were preparing for the second coming of Christ, which they believed would occur at Reorganized Church’s temple in Kirtland, where the church was based from 1831-1838.

He said the spiritually unclean had to be dealt with and referred to the killings as “pruning the vineyard.”

Thirteen of Lundgren’s 20 or so followers were also charged in the case.

The cult disintegrated when its members realized that they, just like their ‘prophet of God,’ were facing murder charges.

Kirtland residents find closure

For the past 16 years, Kirtland resident Lee Traxler has been waiting to see if justice would be served in the murders of his five former neighbors. On Tuesday, as Traxler sipped coffee at Judy and Jen’s Restaurant in Kirtland an hour after the execution of Jeffrey Lundgren, he said it had.

Cult leader Jeffrey Lundgren says he’s too obese for execution

A federal judge on Tuesday delayed next week’s execution of cult leader Jeffrey Lundgren to allow him to join a lawsuit by five other death row inmates challenging the state’s use of lethal injection. In his request to join the lawsuit, Lundgren, 56, said he is at even greater risk of experiencing pain and suffering during the procedure than other inmates because he is overweight and diabetic.