Local Religious Community Decries Abuse While Committing the Same Abuses

Neopagan religious systems started in the 1950’s with Gerald Gardner, many adherent being former members of Christian churches. Many former Christians who turned to Neopagan religion claim the Church discriminated and abused them. I would seem unlikely that discrimination and abuse would take place within Neopagan covens-well guess again

Members of the Yahoo group Anti-TAWN, now defunct, decried sexual harassment by a local leader. An investigation revealed discriminatory dialogue about women. Local classes by Rick Johnson revealed snide comments about women. Further investigation revealed a turn used commonly in the neopagan community-Witch Wars. Witch Wars are conflicts between people in covens, some between covens. Witch Wars seem to be so prevalent that a book titled “Witches by Hans Holzer devotes an entire chapter (War of the Witches”) to the subject

During this investigation, a report was received alleging child abuse and neglect. The person who wishes to remain anonymous (thereafter called Anonymous) made a report about the abuses when a friend (Al Lazarra) of both the parent, Angelus O’Connel, and the concerned person, repeatedly complained about the treatment of the child. The concerned person contacted Tucson Police. According to electronic communications received by Anonymous, Mr. Lazarra refused to talk about the abuse and accused Anonymous of being biased towards the O’Connel. According the electronic communication, Lazarra said the spouse’s (Shana O’Connel) neglect of the child was worse than with the parent Anonymous reported. Lazarra was contacted and asked to comment regarding abuse and neglect reported by Anonymous and if he reported either parent when he was made aware of the abuse. There was no response. A divorce documented at the Pima County Superior Court revealed that the children were being taken care of because CPS investigating the Shana O’Connell.

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