Thursday, January 19, 2017

UCG Minister Stephen Allwine Drugged His Wife Before Shooting Her

Amy Allwine was complaining of vertigo the day she was shot and even spent time looking up the symptoms on how she was feeling, not knowing her husband had drugged her.

Man charged with killing wife and trying to disguise death as suicide
New York Daily News reports that Steve Allwine, 43, of Cottage Grove, accused of having numerous affairs behind his wife’s back, was allegedly devising a plan to get out of his marriage. He reportedly thought killing her would be easier than divorce. He’s accused of shooting Amy Allwine in the head on November 13, 2016, at their home off of 110th Street.
According to court documents, the suspect shot his wife in their bedroom, then left a 9MM Springfield handgun lying next to her. He reportedly contacted hitmen online, looking for someone who would do the deed for him and make it look like a suicide. Investigators indicated that apparently he decided to kill Amy Allwine himself, and used Bitcoin as a currency to illegally purchase a gun.
Amy Allwine was found with the handgun next her right elbow, although she’s left-handed. She also had no gunpowder residue on her hands, while the suspect did. A toxicology report determined that the victim had a high amount of scopolamine in her system, a medication used to treat nausea, known as “the devil’s breath” because it causes memory impairment and loss of inhibition.


Anonymous said...

In our age of mass media, it's easy for these occurrences to be just a blog post, a 5-minute news segment, or a one-hour TV drama plot. I have seen the damage first-hand. In real life, the tragedy isn't over in 5 minutes or an hour. The lives of all these people are over as they knew it, and possibly over in the ultimate way also, albeit in slow motion. I knew a teenage girl who committed suicide after her father committed suicide after he was imprisoned for murdering her stepfather. The "newsworthy" part is just the beginning of the tragedy.

As Silenced pointed out, perhaps in response to a now deleted Armstrongite apologist, this does indeed happen all over society and in other churches, and it isn't just a symptom of COG culture. Certainly Armstrongism doesn't have a monopoly on perverse and pernicious organizational cultures. When has anyone ever made such a claim? Apologists use this strawman routinely, but we'll come back to this in a moment.

I recall while Herbert Armstrong was alive, that whenever things went down the shitter, people would pull out the argument, "Mr. Armstrong isn't Superman, and if only he knew, things would be better." The argument being, that when bad things happen, they aren't systematic, but one-off occurrences, because imperfect people make supposedly innocent "mistakes." It should be pointed out that people used the exact same argument in Germany to excuse the systematic and totally not innocent abuses of a fascist regime. If this argument can be made to serve there, it can be made to serve anywhere. I suspect that if Herbert Armstrong had the power to right every wrong, that not only would that not have been what he would have done, but that things would have been even worse. And then they would trot out the platitude that you shouldn't let these supposedly non-systematic "errors in judgement" by a "few" come "between you and God."

Which brings me to my next point.


Anonymous said...


As Doug pointed out, Armstrongist churches have always portrayed themselves as being God's exclusive representatives on earth and regularly reassert that they are the only ones with access to the "holy spirit."

Well then, that begs the question, that if Armstrongism is the exclusive font of the one-and-only real God's power and wisdom, then why doesn't Armstrongism have a monopoly as being the one place in the world where tragedies like this one never happen? If there's so much "holy spirit" sloshing around withing UCG, or LCG, then why do these so-called "mistakes" ever get made at all? Why is Armstrongism trolling the dimly-lit bottom along with the perverse and pernicious, instead of up at the top, in the sunlight?

That its apologists consistently cite reasons to explain why Armstrongist churches bottomfeeding along with the perverse and pernicious is exactly what everyone should expect already tells us all we need to know. However else it might be intended, this apologetic is nevertheless a confession that Armstrongism is located at the wrong end of the spectrum from where you would expect such a church as they insist their favorite splinter must be. The argument is self-refuting.

I attended UCG for many years. Eventually I left because I was coming to terms that there was nothing to be achieved by doing so. There was no god to be found there. I was baptized in the natatorium pool twenty years prior, but I never received any "holy spirit," and as I looked around, I realized that nobody else had ever received any either. Where was the "holy spirit" in the life of Stephen Allwine, whispering, "This is the way, walk ye in it? Where was the angelic protection for his wife, Amy? As their son becomes a ward of the state?

As Dennis pointed out, churches and religions do not generally make human beings better. In fact, it could be argued that it makes them stagnant at best, because it convinces them their own efforts to better themselves are "filthy rags," and meanwhile, to do nothing at all while they wait for a supernatural force that does not exist to change them instead. This is not a recipe for positive change. But it could be a recipe for desperation.

Since classical times theodicy has been one of the great and enduring disconfirmations of good and powerful gods, and remains so today. The god of Armstrongism isn't immune from its force.

Where was the god of Armstrongism as this tragedy began to spiral out of control? "Oh, well, god isn't Superman, you know. If only he knew, things would be better." Good thing he didn't!

Anonymous said...

When people leave the church, the stock accusation thrown at them is how they're leaving just so that they can go out and do everything they feel like doing, "without feeling guilty" about it.

First, this is just another case study in how one does not need to leave the church to do everything they feel like doing already. One can do whatever they like and remain a member in good standing...just as long as what they're doing does not result in criminal which case they'll expunge every trace they can that you were ever there!

I was once told by none other than Vic Kubik himself, that since what UCG HQ in Cincinnati had done was not criminal, then there was no room for anyone to find fault with it. Apparently, in practice, the ethical standard in UCG has nothing to do with the bible, but is instead the secular criminal code. And even that's probably acceptable, as long as you don't get caught. Not surprising really. That's the way it is in the catholic church too.

Second, one's feelings don't get left behind in the rented hall they meet at when they leave church, or with the organization when they realize that membership has cost without benefit. Nor does one's innate sense of right, wrong, and guilt, contrary to tired and stale old churchy cliché platitudes.

Silenced said...

Allwine's most recent sermons were from October on the subjects of "Don't just show up to church" and "The sin of allowing sin" -- both are absent from UCG's website, along with all other info about him.

This was someone who was intending to just melt back into his COG life after murdering his wife, and raising his child as if nothing ever happened while accepting everyone's condolences and sympathies.

A common refrain from COG members who knew the Allwines today, which I have heard from a handful of different people: who else among us is a murderer?

This shatters trust and the bubble has been breached. There's a lot of healing that needs to take place, for both the Allwine family and their church brethren who are in crisis this morning.

I'm eager to see how Victor Kubik, who has landed in Minneapolis, is going to handle this. They've wasted no time jumping on the grenade as news spreads.

Anonymous said...

According to Dave's Pack original autobiography, he took surveys in his churches. The surveys result was that half the church members did no or next to no prayer or bible study. Meaning, just attending church does not mean one is converted or putting out effect to be a better person.