6 07-17-87 10:23 ped calif., n.y., krishna states Prosecutor says Krishna ceremonty won't
6 07-17-87 10:23 ped
calif., n.y., krishna states
Prosecutor says Krishna ceremonty won't help Drescher
MOUNDSVILLE, W.Va. (UPI) _ The Marshall County prosecutor dismissed
Hare Krishna devotee Thomas Drescher's claim that a religious ceremony
should free him from his life sentence for murder as a "laughing
Drescher says he will go through a Krishna ceremony next Wednesday
in the West Virginia Penitentiary that will erase his past and should
permit him to be set free and allowed to preach worldwide.
"With this ceremony, you become socially dead. For a Krishna, it
means, `Whatever he was, he no longer is,"' Drescher said Friday from
However, Marshall County prosecutor Thomas White said there is no
chance Drescher would be released from his life sentence for the 1983
murder of fellow devotee Charles Saint Denis.
"It's totally foreign to any jurisprudence I know of," White
said. "It's little more than a laughing matter."
White said Drescher's comment that his past will be erased through
the ceremony could be construed as a ploy to avoid extradition to
California where he is wanted for the May 1986 murder of Krishna
dissident Steven Bryant of Los Angeles.
"(Drescher) can't allege he's not the same person just because he
has a different name," White said.
Drescher's second extradition hearing is scheduled July 31 in
Marshall County Circuit Court in Moundsville. He refused at a June 26
hearing to waive extradition.
Drescher, a native of Buffalo, N.Y., said he will take the order of
Sannyasa in the ceremony inside the maximum-security prison at
Moundsville. He said the title of "swami" will be added to his Krishna
"One becomes fully renounced of material encumbrances. You have to
cut off all previous ties with your wife and family," he said. "You
must rely solely on Krishna."
E-Mail Fredric L. Rice / The Skeptic Tank