Cult member returns to Strong City compound

KOB News, New Mexico/February 8, 2009

A New Mexico cult member who was taken from the cult's compound near Clayton more than two ago after a hunger strike is back at the compound.

That is according to the cult's website.

The 25-year-old woman, known as Esther, stopped eating in protest of the 10-year prison sentence given to the cult leader, Wayne Bent.

A little over a week ago, authorities took Esther off the property to try and get her to eat.

Just hours before her removal, she talked to Eyewitness News 4's Jeremy Jojola and said she hadn't eaten since Dec. 30

Esther wrote out a signed statement refusing medical care, saying "I don't want to be resuscitated unless Wayne Bent is released."

"I'll stand like a rock," she said. "I'm not giving in."

"I love Michael [Bent] with all my heart, and he means more to me than the world will ever know, and he's just precious to me, and I'm not going to live with his suffering."

"I want people to just leave me alone," she said. "Let me do what my religious beliefs are."

Esther's older sister, who is no longer part of the cult, got the order to keep Esther from harming herself. Elsa Sayer is also a former member of the Strong City Cult. She has no problem with deputies hauling Esther off to the hospital

"It's just killing herself, for no reason I see," said Sayer.

It was Sayer's two daughters who climbed into Wayne Bent's bed naked, leading to the charges against him. Sayer hopes now that Bent is gone, his followers will see the light.

"I am glad that he's locked up in a way, because it gives everybody out there a chance to be away from his influence. It gives them a chance to think for themselves, so might see the real truth and stuff," said Sayer.

To see more documents/articles regarding this group/organization/subject click here.