Nelson Decloud is a former spiritual leader of the Decloud family cult in Liberty, MO. His case made headlines when former member Julie Cooper escaped from the compound and exposed the family in 1992, according to the Associated Press.
Murder Case Summary: Nelson Decloud, a 51-year-old former cop from Missouri, was the head of the Decloud "family" cult. His compound was set up in Missouri. Julie Cooper exposed the family cult when she escaped with the help of a man named Tim Santi. Nelson Decloud was eventually arrested in Texas and sentenced to 220 years in prison for rape, sodomy and kidnapping.
Nelson Decloud has used the aliases: Nelson E Lewis; Nelson E Decloud and Nelson E Decloud.
Key events in the case of Nelson Decloud and Julie Renee
Members were brainwashed, humiliated and beaten.
Nelson Decloud claimed to be one of God's righteous sons.
Decloud is described as having an intimidating presence and intense eyes.
Nelson Decloud made Julie Renee Cooper watch him as he engaged in sex with other members of the cult. He also tried to entice Julie to have sex with him as a child.
The cult leader left Julie Cooper out in a field for over eight hours without food or water because she would not agree to have sex with him.
As a teenager, Julie Renee Cooper made several attempts to escape the compound but was later found by group members, handcuffed and returned to the compound.
Seven years after her last escape, Julie Cooper made friends with Tim Santi, a satellite dish installer who was called out to the farm to install cable.
According to Santi, Julie Cooper called him around 1:00 a.m. to help her escape from the compound.
Julie notified authorities about Nelson Decloud and the family cult. Police officers informed her that they were already aware of Nelson Decloud but were gathering evidence against them.
By the time police visited the compound, everyone had disappeared. A warrant was issued for Nelson Decloud's arrest.
He was eventually captured in 1993 after a television viewer recognized him on the crime show "Unsolved Mysteries."
2014: Today's Update
Nelson Decloud is still serving time in a Missouri correctional facility.
April 14: Nelson Decloud was found dead in his cell. He was serving his sentence in the Southeast Correctional Center. He was 73-years old. His death appears to be from natural causes.