Four men believed to be former members of the Amish community and allegedly part of a cult have been arrested for an attack on a Amish man after breaking and entering his Ohio home and cutting his beard with scissors.
Police officials in Jefferson County in Steubenville, Ohio have arrested 38-year-old Johnny Mullet, 26-year-old Lester Mullet, 53-year-old Levi Miller, and Lester Miller for kidnapping and burglary tied to the attack of a 74-year-old man, The Associated Press reported.
According to the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, give Amish families have been victims of attacks in the past several week by a group who break into homes to cut off the traditional beards worn by the Amish.
Arlene Miller, whose husband Myron was attacked on Wednesday, said she believes the suspects are former rogue members of the Amish community who have since formed a cult near Bergholz, Ohio. The Millers along with another family have filed charges against the beard-cutting cult, the Post-Gazette reported.
In pressing charges, this isn't revenge, 45-year-old Miller told the Post-Gazette. This is different. They're like hate crimes. They're terrorizing people and communities.
Neighbors said the Bergholz group is made up of 16 formerly Amish families who formed a secluded compound near the Ohio River with its own schoolhouse, homes, barns and outbuildings.
Miller said the leader of the group is a 70-year-old construction worker who formed the group nearly a decade ago following an exit from the heavily-populated Amish community in Ohio.
They totally separate themselves from the Amish, Miller said.
Authorities said a number of attacks in which a man's beard has been cut off occurred in the surrounding communities nearby, one of the nation's largest Amish populous.