2014 Lisa McPherson case: events leading to the death of Scientologist Lisa McPherson
Tampa Bay Times
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The death of Lisa McPherson is a crucial event in Scientology’s history. After being declared ‘clear’ (apparently by the by the current leader of the church of Scientology, David Miscavige) she suffered a psychotic break – after a minor car accident, she took off all her clothes and wandered down the road in a confused state.
She refused medical treatment (Scientologists are taught to fear psychiatrists) and was instead subjected to a Scientology procedure, the ‘Introspection Rundown’ which is is described here (and is available for download) in another post.
Critics suggest that the cause of her death was neglect and dehydration, the result of a collision between the demanding reality of caring for a person undergoing a psychotic break, and the rigid requirements of Scientology doctrine.
These three links provide a overview of events, and explain the wider implications of this tragic an unnecessary death.
The three links above provide an overview of this case.
- Lisa McPherson case: events leading to the death of Scientologist Lisa McPherson Provides a basic timeline of events. Readers who are not familiar with the case should start here.
- Death in Slow Motion give a more detailed account, informed by interviews with Scientology defectors who had first-hand knowledge of event, and examines the wider implications for the Church of Scientology.
- The surviving notes of Lisa McPherson’s Scientology ‘Watchers’ is a leaked document – a diary kept by the people who administered the ‘Introspection Rundown’ to Lisa MPherson. The final section of this document was destroyed, and the remainder takes the same unlikely line as the Church of Scientology later pursued – that Lisa McPherson died of a mysterious infection which killed her within 24 hours.