Paul R. Ingram of Olympia WA was charged and convicted on 6 counts of 3rd degree child rape involving his two daughters. He pleaded guilty to all counts, and received a 20 year sentence. He attempted to reverse his plea, but was unable to do so. Ingram appealed to the Washington State Supreme Court for permission to withdraw his guilty plea; his appeal was rejected. He unsuccessfully applied for a pardon. He was finally released from prison on 2003-APR-8, after having served. Many investigators believe that he is not guilty of any of the counts; further, they believe that the child rape never happened.
The 1988 charges against Ingram caused an absolute sensation among people who follow ritual abuse
cases. This was the first known instance of a person actually pleading guilty to
Satanic Ritual Abuse. Ingram was a sheriff's deputy in Olympia, WA, and
local official in the Republican party.
Ingram attended the Church of Living Water. They taught two religious concepts that were to cause him incredible problems later:
At various times during the interrogation, he recovered images of killing a cat and murdering a prostitute.
Various sources report that:
The prosecutors hired Dr. Richard Ofshe to help them with the case. Dr. Ofshe is a world-class memory researcher, and a specialist in the tactics of coercion. He has studied Chinese Communist brainwashing techniques and recruitment methods of political groups and religious sects. He began to suspect that Ingram was delusional. Ofshe designed a test: he confirmed with Ingram's son and two daughters that at no time had their father forced them to have sex with each other. He asked their father whether he had done such an act. He also denied it. Dr. Ofshe then asked him to go back to his cell and think about it. Ingram did this. He entered a trance-like state, generated a detailed scenario about how he might have forced his children to have sex with each other, composed a multi-page confession, and signed it. 8This convinced Dr. Ofshe that Ingram was delusional.
There is a second independent proof that Ingram's recollections were not real memories. When he described one of the abuse scenes, an interrogator asked him what time the rape took place. In his mind, he "zeroed in" on one of the perpetrator's arms and read the time off of his watch dial. Data simply cannot be obtained from old memories in this way. (Recall an event last year where many people were present; now try to zero in on someone's watch and read the time). Ingram's "memories" were simply fantasies created to satisfy the interrogators; they were unrelated to real events.
The prosecution wisely decided to ignore all of the Satanic evidence and simply charge Ingram with 6 charges of rape. Including the Satanic abuse would probably cause the prosecution credibility problems. Ingram entered a plea of guilty in order to minimize his daughters' pain. He was convinced that he must have abused them as they described, even though his memories were unclear. He did not want to force them to go through the emotional strain of a trial. The prosecution proudly proclaimed that they had uncovered "the first ritual abuse investigation that has been confirmed by an adult offender involved directly with the offenses in the nation's history".
Jim Rabie and Ray Risch, two of his poker friends, were released from jail after having been incarcerated for 158 days. Charges against them were dropped. The reason given was that Ingram's two daughters were too traumatized to testify. Years afterwards, the men still lived in Olympia, and many of the townsfolk considered them to be guilty. Jim Rabie had a business in which he supplied lobbying services in support of law enforcement; it went bankrupt. Unfortunately, by the time that Dr. Ofshe issued his report which showed that these memories were false, Ingram had already confessed to the crimes. When Ingram finally figured out that his "memories" were of events that did not happen, he attempted to reverse his plea. But laws in Washington state prevent a person from changing a guilty plea. Paul Ingram has written several letters to his church: the Church of Living Water. He asked them to meet with members of the Ingram Organization which is trying to have him released from prison. He allegedly had not received a reply.
In 1994, Lawrence Wright wrote a riveting series of articles about the Ingram case in the New Yorker magazine; these were subsequently published in book form. 1 He received an award from Northwestern University for his reporting. Carol Burns, a resident of Olympia WA has created a documentary videotape about the case. 2 The Washington State Pardons Board heard a submission from Ingram, his son, memory experts Dr. Elizabeth Loftus & Dr. Richard Ofshe, the Sheriff of Thurston County, Gary Edwards, and author Lawrence Wright. He remained in prison in Delaware for 14 years. Being a former police officer, he would not have been safe if he were incarcerated in a Washington State prison.
The Board's decision was delivered on 1996-DEC-13th in Olympia, WA. The 5 member panel voted: 2 against recommending parole, one for parole and one abstention. The Chairperson did not reveal her vote. He spent his time in prison teaching literacy to other prisoners, and revamping the Delaware correctional facilities' computer systems. During the summer of 1999, Paul's father died. He was not allowed to attend the funeral. His mother died on 2003-JAN-2. He was released on 2003-APR-8, at the age of 57, and relocated to Spokane, WA. He has been offered jobs in Maine, Colorado and Oregon. But because Paul is a sex offender, other states are unwilling to take him. The Spokane Police Department issued a news release which assumed that Paul Ingram was guilty of the charges against him. 9 They referred to him as a "Level III offender" -- the most dangerous kind. They stated that:
The police sponsored a neighborhood meeting on APR-15, "in response to resident concerns..." Dan Brailey, founder of the Ingram Organization, attended the meeting. He said that he was "floored by people and their emotions." He said that one woman was worried because Ingram had been a law enforcement officer. She asked the group what would prevent Ingram from putting on a McGruff outfit and luring children into his house. The police have published his approximate location, thus almost guaranteeing harassment by a frightened public. He cannot travel without first obtaining permission. He must meet with an officer from the sex offender unit five to ten times a month, and enroll in a sex offender treatment program. Station KXLY, the local ABC affiliate, has given Ingram positive coverage and pressed for an investigation of his case. Mark Fuhrman, a well known retired police detective, devoted one of his two hour radio shows to the Ingram case, during which he interviewed Dr. Ofshe, Dan Brailey, and a co-defendant Jim Rabie. Fuhrman also doubts Ingram's guilt.
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