Judge Refuses to Free Leader of Amish Beard-cutting Sect

CLEVELAND (RNS) A federal judge Wednesday (Jan. 11) refused to release the leader of an Amish splinter sect from jail on charges he orchestrated the cutting of beards of Amish men over longstanding religious disagreements. Samuel Mullet Sr. and 11 others pleaded not...

Update: Church/jail Sentencing Program Under Review

BAY MINETTE, Ala. (RNS) An alternative sentencing plan that would give inmates the choice between time in jail or a year in church will be delayed for several weeks while lawyers review it to make sure there are no legal issues. The American Civil Liberties Union of...

Criminals Offered Choice of Time in Pews or the Pokey

BAY MINETTE, Ala. (RNS) A new alternative sentencing program that offers first-time, nonviolent offenders a choice of a year in church or jail time and fines is drawing national attention, including fire from the American Civil Liberties Union. “This policy is...