Time and time again, I’ve attacked the notion that dead animal parts, especially dead animal parts left lying around in public, were the result of Santeria or Vodou rituals, instead of an individual’s distressed mind. This is not just my opinion, officials within the American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals have noted that such actions “are most often the work of religious novices, teens or satanic dabblers.” Yet, the allure of some dark cult littering animal parts in various places endures within modern journalism, despite often flimsy or circumstantial evidence. So I think a recent story from WAVY in Virginia is most illuminating as to exploring the type of person who (allegedly) slaughters someone’s animals, leaves the heads in strategic places, and vandalizes local churches.
“The woman accused of killing and maiming two pigs, then leaving one of the pig’s heads on its owner’s front porch last week is in trouble again. Police say 21-year-old Ashley Marie Fowler was arrested at her place of employment last Wednesday after they found evidence in her car linking her to a recent church burglary.”
“On Monday, warrants were secured for Fowler for the burglary of Northwest Baptist Church. She now faces one count of burglary and one count of grand larceny in addition to two felony counts of killing/maiming livestock, one count of vandalism and one count of prescription pills.“
So we have a young woman, seemingly abusing prescription narcotics, clearly suffering some sort of mental distress, allegedly acting out in a violent and confused manner. Barely covering her tracks, and allowing the police to easily track the evidence to straight to her. This is the true face of most “occult” crime. The perpetrators of wantonly violent acts against Christian churches and animals. Troubled kids. Despite the mounting evidence that this wasn’t some sort of “Satanic” or “occult” crime, Animal Control officers and detectives are still “investigating” that possibility. Why? Because of “occult crime” experts who need for every animal death, every broken church window, every spray-painted pentagram to be connected to some illusory network of occult or religious practitioners. The men and women (but usually men, it must be said) who travel the country, spinning yarns about the “growth” of occult crime, who seemingly feel no remorse or sense of responsibility for their part in the last wave of moral panics that ruined the lives of thousands of people.
I know that human beings love a good conspiracy, and many media professionals spend a great deal of time giving the people what they want, but sometimes (to paraphrase Freud) a lone nut is sometimes just a lone nut. Or in this case, a troubled young person, is simply a troubled young person. The more we allow law enforcement and animal control officials to be trained by these “occult” experts, the more “occult” crime they’ll see.