Sexual Assault is the Latest Witch Hunt in America’s History: Guilt By Accusation and Public Shaming is the New Norm, and It’s Wrong

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History of  Witch Hunts in America, located at the Salem Witch Museum, Massachusetts

Society has a tendency to respond in a crisis oriented fashion to a moral panic. After “The Invisible War” gaslighted America, all women soldiers were victims and all male soldiers were predators. This has been a repeated cycle after every sexual assault scandal. The media narratives reflect this and continue to perpetuate the myths typically choosing a blonde white female as the ‘victim’. But that’s not how it works in real life and male victims of crime in the military set both the filmmakers and the media straight. The momentum died off so they created another film about college sexual assault and tried again creating a female versus male division. No one really knows the statistics at the college campuses but in the military, the majority of victims of sexual assault and homicide are men. We care about the men just as much as we care about the women. We care about facts and evidence and have learned that the devil is in the details.

Learn more:
Rape Culture is a ‘Panic Where Paranoia, Censorship, and False Accusations Flourish’
A Complete List of the 35 Basic Military Training Instructors Court Martialed in the Lackland Air Force Base Sex Scandal
Minnesota football rape case emblematic of campus witch-hunt culture
Rape Culture in the West is as Real as ‘Witchcraft in Salem’
A Brief History of the Salem Witch Trials
Defending Sexual Assault Cases Animation


In this video, a former D.A. (now criminal defense lawyer) explains the law of rape, penalties and sentencing, and common legal strategies to fight the case. Each year, countless innocent people get wrongfully arrested for rape and sexual assault. Sometimes there was a genuine misunderstanding between the accuser and the accused as to the issue of consent. Other times, the alleged victim makes up false allegations out of anger, jealousy or spite towards the accused. A conviction for Penal Code 261 can bring years, sometimes life in prison. It’s important in these situations to have an attorney and defense investigator who can scrutinize the background of the accuser and expose a fabricated story for what it it.

Navy Veteran Richard Uffelman & Two Children Opened Fire and Killed Neighbors Michael and Florence Phillips in Maine, Richard Sentenced to Life in Prison (1989)

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Richard Uffelman, US Navy Veteran

On August 29, 1989, Navy veteran Richard Uffelman and his two sons opened fire from their living room window and shot and killed their neighbors Michael and Florence Phillips in Machiasport, Maine. The Phillips family moved back to Maine so they could be closer to their family and the ocean, and they wanted to escape crime in Indiana. Shortly before they moved to Maine, a murder occurred outside their home and this was it for them; they wanted to raise their son Michael in a safe environment. Richard and Anita Uffelman and their two sons were the new neighbors of the Phillips in Maine. Richard was described as an authoritarian and a believer in good order and discipline. He worked at the local post office and taught his two children to shoot guns. Initially the neighbors were good friends and their boys played together. At some point, family came to visit the Phillips for a week. The happy family reunited outside on the front lawn while they barbecued, drank some beers, and enjoyed one another’s company. Apparently Richard found a broken bottle on his lawn during the event and automatically assumed the Phillips threw the bottle on his lawn. Richard called the police to complain about the incident but there was no proof since the Phillips denied doing it. This was it for Richard; the Phillips home interfered with his view of the ocean and he was going to exact his revenge.

After this first broken bottle incident, Richard continued to call the police complaining that the neighbors were throwing bottles on his property. He would bag them up and give them to the police as evidence. The Phillips continued to deny the allegations. The police were beginning to get concerned for the Phillips. Then Richard’s wife Anita called the Phillips family and told them that Richard did not want their two sons playing with Michael anymore. Florence was confused. Soon Richard began harassing them while they were outside on their lawn. He used a megaphone and yelled at them until they went back into their house. The Phillips became fearful of him because he was quite literally bullying them. Richard upped the anti and put up some bright lights that shined directly on their home. He also shot guns in front of his home with his two boys on a regular basis which to the Phillips began feeling threatening. They called the police to ask Uffelman to stop shooting the guns because it felt like he was flexing his muscles but their was nothing illegal about shooting guns for target practice in Maine. The police couldn’t do anything. They needed evidence so Michael and Florence set up a video camera to start taping the behavior because they were not the gun types.

Tension and fear was building daily. The Phillips called the police on Richard Uffelman and Uffelman called the police on them. Now Richard wanted a protection order. It was obvious to police that Richard was getting paranoid and he had some fear that could not be alleviated by the police. Uffelman wanted to play war. Uffelman began dressing in full military fatigues with his two sons and they all carried guns and marched together as if they were in the military or a militia. The kids were impacted by Richard’s paranoia as well; as a matter of fact the whole family was brainwashed. Eventually the Phillips were afraid of Uffelman and his two sons. The Phillips left the city to get away from violence and now they were in the middle of it. They decided to file a harassment suit to get Richard Uffelman to stop. At this point, they felt trapped in their own home and they continued to videotape because it was their only option. One day Richard and his two sons armed with guns started chasing the Phillip’s son after school as if he was prey. The trio scared the entire Phillips family and they called the police again. The cops took it seriously and knew things were not going to turn out right. The Phillips got a protection order and then went on a vacation to Indiana to visit family in July 1989.

While the Phillips were visiting with family, they began viewing the videotapes. All of them were terrified at what they were witnessing but the Phillips were stuck financially. They assured their family they would be fine but in reality they were afraid Richard Uffelman would kill them when they got back. They asked their family to raise their son Michael if Uffelman killed them. They left for Maine the next day because it was their home and they had no other option. They got back to the war zone and the front lines had moved closer to home. When they got out of their vehicle, they realized that someone had dumped gasoline on their front porch. They witnessed someone running in the shadows from their home to Uffelman’s home. They called the police again but they didn’t have any proof that Uffelman had done it. They all recognized that Uffelman was raising the stakes. Unfortunately the system was at a stand still until someone made an overt act. On August 29, 1989, family visited the Phillips because they were celebrating a pregnancy in the family. The Phillips revealed to them that dealing with Uffelman was very stressful because they hadn’t caught anything of value for their harassment case. In this case, the best evidence would come too late.

Michael and Florence Phillips left the house that evening for a walk, just like every other night. This time Michael was carrying a gun as they walked in an effort to let Richard know that they were not going to take it. Then all of a sudden Richard and both of his sons began shooting at both of them from the living room of their home as they walked. The remaining family in the home were fearful that they were going to kill young Michael next. Meanwhile, Michael and Florence are struggling to move to safety in the woods to escape the barrage of gunfire. Uffelman did go to the Phillips home but turned around and left. After this near miss, the three family members in the home left to protect young Michael. They were not sure how Michael and Florence were doing at this point; they were not sure if they had been murdered or if they were still alive. Police arrived on the scene and knocked on Richard Uffelman’s door. They found him sitting at his kitchen table which was covered with handguns and firearms. The police were worried about their own safety but Uffelman surrendered without incident and he was taken into police custody. Michael and Florence Phillips both died at the scene in the woods where they attempted to escape the gunman.

Richard Uffelman was arrested for murder after the Phillips’ bodies were found. His two sons participated in the shootings as well and together they fired twenty-five rounds or so from the inside of their home. Investigators concluded the two boys were doing what they were told to do; they were victims too and as a result were not charged. Upon search of the property, police learned that Uffelman’s land was rigged with trip wire and his home was riddled with explosives. Bomb technicians were called in to remove the undetonated devices. Police also found secret passageways and tunnels. Uffelman tried to claim self-defense at his trial but the video coverage the Phillips had showed otherwise. The videotapes revealed that Uffelman went outside to check to see if his prey were dead; his murderous intent was all captured on film. Richard Uffelman was sentenced to life in prison for the first degree murders of Michael and Florence Phillips. Young Michael sued Richard Uffelman in Maine Superior Court and was awarded a wrongful death judgement for $513,320 but he has never received a dime. According to a YouTube site called Abandonment of Maine, shortly after new owners moved into the Uffelman home, the house caught on fire and burned to the ground.

Related Links:
Fatal Feud Divides a Village in Maine
Killer in Taped Shootings Sentenced to Life in Prison
State of Maine v. Richard B. Uffelman (1993)
Sons Tell of Fear They Felt
Uffelman sons describe fear before killing of neighbors
Machias killer to petition for new trial today
True Crime Stories: Richard Uffelman
10 Disturbing Cases Of Neighbors From Hell
Into Their Own Hands by Gary Provost (Book)
How Can Broken Soda Bottles Lead To Revenge?
Fear Thy Neighbor, ‘Red Picket Fences’ (ID YouTube)


The Phillips’ family moves to a quiet seafront town in Maine to escape a crime wave in Indiana. But their dream home comes with a not so dreamy ex-military neighbor. A barrage of gunfire between the houses one night shatters both families forever. -Investigation Discovery

Army Veteran Sylvia Seegrist Went on Shooting Spree at Shopping Mall Killing Recife Cosmen, Ernest Trout and Augusto Ferrara; Sentenced to Life in Prison (1985)

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Sylvia Seegrist, US Army Veteran

On October 30, 1985, Sylvia Seegrist, 25, dressed in Army fatigues and black boots, parked her car in front of the Springfield Mall in a suburb of Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, stepped out, and started shooting. She killed three people and injured seven more in the mass shooting before she was stopped by an on-looker in the mall who didn’t realize she was not in a Halloween costume. Killed in the incident was a young child and two men: Recife Cosmen, 2, Dr. Ernest Trout, 67, and Augusto Ferrara, 64. As a result, Seegrist was arrested and indicted for three first degree murders. Investigators would learn that Sylvia Seegrist was discharged from the military after a year of serving because she wasn’t “right in the head” according to Army officials. Sylvia’s mother shared that she tried to get help for her daughter and tried to get her to take medication, but no one would hear her pleas for help. Prior to and after her trial in 1986, Seegrist was held at a Pennsylvania State Hospital.

Sylvia downward spiraled after her discharge from the Army and used the military training she learned to kill innocent civilians. After Sylvia was found guilty of three first degree murders and given three life sentences, she was transferred to the women’s Pennsylvania State Correctional Institution where she still resides. The 1985 incident highlighted the fine line between an individual’s rights and the state’s authority to commit potentially dangerous people. Seegrist interviewed in 1991 said, “daily doses of anti-psychotic medication had curtailed her delusions, paranoia and explosive anger.” Why wasn’t the mental illness picked up by recruiting and instead only recognized after she joined the military? Sylvia Seegrist had paranoid schizophrenia which is a serious mental illness that requires the use of medication to manage symptomology. Sylvia Seegrist needed follow on treatment after her discharge from the Army in an effort to prevent a predictable downward spiral.

Related Links:
Wikipedia: Sylvia Seegrist
2 Killed in Shopping Mall as Woman Fired on Crowd
Cousins Huddled to Protect Each Other as Woman Opened Fire
Shooting suspect said to be abusive
Sylvia Seegrist, the fatigue-clad woman who shot 10 people…
She’s sorry she killed, but victims’ kin don’t want her freed Medicine curbs psychotic urges of woman who went on rampage
Middletown native, Springfield mall hero named as Coatesville police chief
Springfield Mall’s 1985 Shooter: Where is She Now?
Sylvia Seegrist went psycho and killed three innocent people at the Springfield, Pa., mall
Decades After Sylvia Seegrist, Mentally Ill People Are Still Murdering Innocents
The Anomaly of a Female Mass Shooter: San Bernardino Wife Joins Small Group of Shooters
Many factors make San Bernardino rare among mass shootings
‘Why is it men who commit mass shootings?’
Extreme Killing: Understanding Serial and Mass Murder
Miss Rambo: The True Story of Spree Killer Sylvia Seegrist
Deadly Women | Twisted Minds | Sylvia Seegrist


In a rage driven by years of untreated schizophrenia, 25-year-old Sylvia Seegrist opened fire on innocent shoppers in a Philadelphia-area mall in 1985. -Deadly Women

Air Force Captain Ronald Ball Shot & Killed Michael Faast, Exercised Right to Remain Silent, Plead Temporary Insanity, Found Guilty But Insane (1979)

Officers find the lifeless body of furniture salesman behind the wheel. But Faast didn’t die in the wreck – he was shot point-blank in the temple. Lt. Joe Kenda must track a killer whose promising career took a dark and deadly turn. -Investigation Discovery

On February 16, 1979, police found Michael Faast shot and killed in his vehicle in a parking lot at an apartment complex in Colorado Springs, Colorado. They also found a traumatized Lori Firth in the vehicle who was transported to the hospital for treatment. After an investigation, Lt. Joe Kenda learned from Lori Firth that Air Force Captain Ronnie Ball was the shooter. Captain Ball was an up and coming military officer stationed at the North American Aerospace Defense Command (NORAD) at Peterson Air Force Base. Lt. Kenda learned from Lori that she started dating Ronnie about three years prior and followed him out to Colorado. After realizing that Ronnie was married to his career in an attempt to make rank and not really interested in marrying her and creating a life, Lori dumped him. Apparently this is what triggered Captain Ball’s downward spiral. Ronnie was devastated by the break-up. This was the first time he had ever been rejected and he didn’t like it. Ronnie tried to propose marriage to Lori over the phone and left her a couple letters saying that his life was not worth living without her. Ronnie just didn’t get it; Lori was done with him.

On February 16, Ronnie showed up to Lori’s apartment. Lori described his behavior as erratic and he smelled of alcohol. His behavior was scaring her. Ronnie accused her of sleeping with her friend Michael and Lori told him to get out. Shortly after that encounter Michael Faast showed up to Lori’s place to pick her up. They jumped in the vehicle and were confronted by Ronnie Ball on the driver’s side of the vehicle with a gun in the apartment complex parking lot. Michael rolled down his window in an attempt to make peace. Ronnie asked Lori to get out of the vehicle, she refused. Ronnie told Michael to leave Lori, he refused. Lori asked Michael to get out of there and that’s when Ronnie Ball shot Michael Faast from about a foot away in the head. Faast died instantly. Michael’s vehicle then crashed into the side of the apartment building and rolled back into the parking lot with Lori in it. Ronnie Ball took off. Ronnie Ball was arrested after police secured a formal statement from Lori Firth.

The Colorado Spring Police Department never found the murder weapon therefore they needed a confession from Captain Ball to make the first degree murder charges stick. Right from the get go, Ronnie Ball exercised his right to remain silent and asked for an attorney. While he was waiting for his attorney, Lt. Kenda observed unusual behavior, extremely bizarre behavior; Ball was talking to himself and going on and on. Captain Ronnie Ball never admitted to committing the crime and despite exercising his right to remain silent was discharged from the US Air Force before he was even left the police station where he was being questioned and fingerprinted. Captain Ball then hired one of the best defense attorneys money could buy. He was found guilty but insane for the murder of Michael Faast by the civilian justice system. Ronald Ball was sent to a treatment program and given no prison time. He has since been released.

Captain Ronnie Ball’s case is an excellent example of the value of exercising the right to remain silent in an attempt to help protect a defense. Lt. Joe Kenda and the court systems definitely protected Ball’s due process rights. But the Air Force on the other hand ended his career before they even knew the facts of the case. They learned that he had been charged with first degree murder and made a decision to end his career without providing him with any due process rights as a military officer or a government employee. At the time of the charge, they had the testimony of an ex-girlfriend and that is it. In a fair, just, and ethical world, the Air Force should have waited until he was found guilty before they discharged him from the service. According to military leadership at NORAD, Captain Ronnie Ball was admired and his work was admired. He was bright and intelligent. It wasn’t until after Ronnie was rejected for the first time in his life that he began to downward spiral. The obsessive, erratic, and paranoid behavior is indicative of a personality disorder triggered by rejection which may be why Captain Ball was deemed insane. This is what justice looks like in the civilian courts; the injustice lies in the hasty actions of the US Air Force.

Related Links:
Revisiting murder cases ‘therapeutic’ for ex cop
Homicide Hunter: Death Grip – Season 4, Show 4, 2014
The Fastest Discharge in Military History
Homicide Hunter: Death Grip (Investigation Discovery)