Daughters of the Cult Tells One of the Bloodiest Cult Stories Since Jonestown

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The latest collaboration between ABC News and Hulu, Daughters of the Cult, cuts through all the true-crime documentary clutter of the last decade. Even if you’re familiar with Mormon fundamentalism or watched FX’s Under the Banner of Heaven (which was based on a different Mormon fundamentalist sect that also ended in violence), the story of Ervil LeBaron and his breakaway Mormon fundamentalist cult will still shock you, as it proves that evil doesn’t die.

Ervil LeBaron was born and raised within one of several Mormon fundamentalist sects dedicated to the concept of “plural marriage” (polygamy) who fled to northern Mexico after breaking off from the LDS church in Salt Lake City. In 1972, Ervil and his brother Joel, the leader of their sect, suffered a falling out, and later that year Joel was murdered by Ervil’s followers on his orders.

Ervil’s bloody rise to power was far from the end of the horror, and what’s so unsettling about this story is how long his reign of terror lasted. Once in power, LeBaron concentrated on eliminating perceived threats to his dominion, which meant taking out the leaders of other polygamist sects. Much attention is paid to the murder of Dr. Rulon Allred, who was shot to death by two of LeBaron’s daughters disguised in red wigs. This earned LeBaron the moniker of the “Mormon Manson,” sending his sons and daughters out into the world to do his bidding.

The team at ABC News takes a journalistic approach to the story, speaking to dozens of people both inside and outside the LeBaron family. Despite its title, Daughters of the Cult is not a memoir, but rather an investigative deep dive into a macabre story. Ervil LeBaron evaded capture and ran his family like a criminal empire — sweatshops, car theft rings, activities all carried out by his own children, who he marshaled like his own personal army. Executive producer Beth Hoppe and her team interview witnesses, experts in Mormon fundamentalism, and law enforcement officials. But it’s the perspectives of Ervil’s family that are the most compelling.

Content retrieved from: https://www.primetimer.com/quickhits/daughters-of-the-cult-abc-news-hulu-ervil-lebaron.

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