Lutherans possessed by stupidity
Cop charged with trying to exorcise boy's demons
Accused of exorcism at Lutheran camp 'Possessed' was 15-year-old boy The Advertiser: South Australian news
A POLICEMAN has been stood down after being charged with trying to perform an exorcism on a teenager at a church youth camp in South Australia.
Senior Constable Roger Sketchley, 28, has been charged with two other adults over an alleged incident at a camp run by the Lutheran Church in the Barossa Valley in April.
Sen-Const Sketchley and other adults allegedly restrained a boy, 15, after he complained of stomach pains in an incident that allegedly went for about 12 hours.
Sen-Const Sketchley was charged with false imprisonment and aggravated assault.
An SA police spokesman yesterday confirmed Sen-Const Sketchley, who was off duty at the time, had been suspended pending the outcome of the charges.
The president of the Lutheran Church in SA and the Northern Territory, the Reverend Robert Voigt, yesterday distanced the church from such practices.
"The Lutheran Church does not endorse or encourage any actions which are abusive or which results in the limitations or freedoms of any individual," he said.
Cases involving exorcism have rarely been brought before Australian courts, with one notable exception.
In the early 1990s, three people were convicted of manslaughter in the Victorian Supreme Court for killing the wife of a pig farmer in a botched exorcism.
Joan Vollmer, 49, died of a heart attack in January 1993 after her husband Ralph Vollmer and three other members of a breakaway Lutheran sect performed an exorcism at the couple's home at Antwerp, near Horsham.
"Experiments are the only means of knowledge at our disposal. The rest is poetry, imagination." Max Planck