Real-Life Satanic Church Was the Nightmarish Inspiration for True Detective By Alisha Grausoon October 3rd, 2014
....True Detective was dark, twisted, cerebral. The crime drama was unlike anything we'd seen on TV yet.
It also happened to be true.
VICE has kicked off its new The Real series with investigating the insane story of the real-life Satanic church in Louisiana that inspired the screenplay for True Detective. While the show's Rust Cohle and Marty Hart are fictional characters, they're based on the two lead detectives who actually did work the horrific case, Captain Stuart Murphy with the Tangipahoa Parish Sheriff's Office and FBI Special Agent Tom Tedder. Don Hall, the lead prosecutor on the case, said the reports of Satanic rituals and devil worshipping were "the most disturbing things" he had ever read in his 30+ years of experience.
....In 2005, Pastor Louis Lamonica, Jr., pastor of the Hosannah Church, walked into the Livingston Parish Sheriff's Office and confessed to crimes that rocked the small town of Ponchatoula, Louisiana to its core. He had done, the pastor said, terrible things. They all had, he and his parishioners. He confessed that he and other church members had regularly engaged in, among other things, child molestation and sexual abuse, bestiality, Satanic rituals including ritualistic killing of animals, and even the abuse of his own children.
....Lamonica also detailed for the shocked detectives some of the more supernatural aspects of these Satanic rituals. They were held, he said, in an upstairs room called the "Youth Room", whose windows were blackened so no one passing by outside could see in - later, investigators on the case found that when they shined a blacklight on the seemingly-unmarked walls, they were actually covered in Scripture and passages from the Bible.
The Youth Room would be decorated and prepared for these Satanic rituals, which would start out like any church service. But instead of hymns, Satanic music would play as they lit the red candles and drew the pentagram on the floor. The rituals often involved sex - with each other or with children - and bodily fluids, such as blood and urine.
....Lamonica and youth pastor Austin "Trey" Bernard confessed members of the church would pass their children around for other members to commit sex acts upon - some of the children were barely able to walk when they were first introduced to the rituals. And, rather than be ashamed of what they were doing, members of the church would confess what they had done with their own children and the children of other members, finding a twisted sort of pleasure in cataloguing their increasingly depraved acts to one another.
....While the investigators could find no hard evidence of the confessed animal killings or bestiality, there was plenty in the Youth Room to support the confessions of both Lamonica and Bernard about the unthinkable acts of sexual depravity and abuse church members inflicted upon their children. Both men were sentenced to life in prison and are currently serving out their concurrent life sentences. Still, because no other children would come forward (the Lamonica boys, years later, retracted their allegations of abuse, as is a common occurrence among traumatized survivors of sexual abuse) and because other church members struck plea deals in exchange for information about other members, the detectives know they only uncovered part of the truth. The true extent of the horror may never be known....
Occult expert searches Westchester animal killings for clues
Thane Grauel October 3, 2014
The occult is the mystical, the magical – what is normally out of view. For most it's a shadow world known only through folklore, movies and novels.
But Westchester County has had several recent glimpses of this secret realm:
• Headless goats and birds found in Yorktown near the New Croton Reservoir.
• A bag with headless goats and chickens found in Long Island Sound in New Rochelle.
• A black bird wrapped in colored fabrics in Mount Vernon.
To make some kind of sense of the disturbing discoveries, the Westchester SPCA called in New York City's Marcos Quinones. For almost three decades, Quinones has been helping law enforcement agencies worldwide sort through clues to determine what type of practitioners were at work – and what they might have been seeking.
"I eliminate what's normal," he said. "If I'm left with occult aspects, is that a ritual of some sort?"
He looks for clues like candles, symbols, money, colored fabrics, and pieces of paper bearing names.
"Ultimately, you have to dissect it," he said of the scene. "The symbols within a ritual are a road map for the entity you worship, they tell what you want the entity to do for you – for someone or against someone, or a group of people."....
Santeria is a mix of West African, Caribbean and Roman Catholic traditions, but is not considered a dark religion, though animal sacrifice is part of its rituals.
Quiones also comes across Satanism. He estimates there are 100,000 people worldwide involved in the practice.
Ernie Lungaro, director of humane law enforcement for the SPCA, has been investigating animal abuse cases in Westchester for four years but only recently called on Quinones for advice after a streak of such cases in quick succession. He said experts can save local investigators time.
Depending on the case, Quinones offers to conduct interviews, interrogation, crime scene evaluation, or expert court testimony. The worst cases he's seen involving violence against children – considered the "ultimate sacrifice" – in the name of a religion.
Animal sacrifices happen in every state, Quinones says. He believes Westchester's recent cases are probably not related to each other, and might involve all three of the black magic and underground religious practices mentioned....