Man tied to reputed cult faces more charges of murder conspiracy

Caruthers is accused of plotting to kill 3 men

Baltimore Sun/September 8, 2002
By Sheridan Lyons

The reputed leader of a space cult in Carroll County, accused of plotting to kill a former business associate, was charged Friday with conspiring to murder two other people, according to court records Scott Caruthers, 57, is accused of targeting for death the ex-husbands of two women who formerly lived in his home in the 500 block of Scott Drive near Westminster.

He has been held at the Carroll County Detention Center since Oct. 3 in lieu of $1 million bail, charged with trying to have a former business associate killed.

Also jailed in that case are: Dashielle Lashra, 42, who is Caruthers' wife; Dulsa Naedek, 44, a live-in companion; and David S. Pearl, 47, a lawyer and friend.

A third woman, Amy C. Dardick, 40, who once lived at Caruthers' house, was charged separately in October with conspiring to have her ex-husband killed.

She was freed on $10,000 bail to enter deprogramming treatment.

On Friday, Caruthers and Naedek were charged with additional counts of conspiracy to commit murder, which carries a possible life sentence, said Carroll County Deputy State's Attorney Tracy A. Gilmore.

Caruthers and Naedek - formerly known as Debra Hackerman - are accused of conspiring to kill her ex-husband, Timothy Hackerman. Caruthers also was charged with conspiring with Dardick to kill her ex-husband, Lewis Dardick.

Timothy Hackerman and Lewis Dardick have been named as targets previously in charging documents and other court papers, but Gilmore said formal criminal charges naming them as potential victims had not been lodged until Friday.

Caruthers has claimed to be an alien who communicated with a mother spaceship through cats, according to the writings of an organization known as Beta Dominion Xenophilia. But Caruthers, an artist, science-fiction writer and inventor of the Strongput exercise weight, denied being a cult leader.

Earlier this year, attorneys for Caruthers and Pearl asked that they be evaluated for a possible insanity defense. Motions in the case are scheduled for next month.

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