An Amish leader got 15 years over beard attacks according to a Feb. 8 Contra Costa Times report. Amish sect leader Samuel Mullet Sr. led hair and beard-cutting attacks against other Amish in Ohio. At least 15 of those who participated also received prison sentences.
At his sentencing Samuel Mullet said that he intended to take the punishment for everyone. However, that is not what happened. The others who participated were sentenced as well. At least five of the others who participated offered to serve his sentence. Mullet also said that he will not be here much longer, which gives rise to the idea that he may be suffering from an illness.
Arlene Miller, the wife of one of the beard-cutting victims, said,
"It's a cult. Their minds were programmed in the wrong way by Sam Mullet, so we feel like these people are very deceived and they are actually victims of Sam Mullet. There's no happy ending to this."
The others who followed Samuel Mullet in these hair and beard-cutting attacks in 2011 were people who had denounced his teachings. Because of this, the crime was ruled a hate crime, which is one reason the sentence is 15 years.
In the Amish community, beards have a religious significance. The people who were attacked were traumatized by losing their beards.