James Arthur Ray's Financial Status Not to Be Discussed at Sweat Lodge Trial, Judge Rules

Categories: Death Lodge
sweatlodge heat.jpg
The Yavapai County Superior Court judge overseeing the manslaughter trial of snake-oil salesman James Arthur Ray ruled today that some important pieces of evidence may not be used by prosecutors during trial -- most notably, information about Ray's financial situation.

Ray's probably lovin' Judge Warren Darrow's ruling -- you know, considering he was charging people up to $9,000 to "change their lives" by sweatin' it out in a make-shift tent. Three people ultimately died from injuries sustained in Ray's sweat lodge event, and he's since been charged with three counts of manslaughter.


Part of Ray's whole gimmick as a "motivational speaker" is bragging about his money and success, which he does quite often in media interviews and on his website. He even told Fortune Magazine in April 2008 that his annual financial goal is $21 million.

However, after three people died at a October 2009 "Spiritual Warrior" event in Sedona, and Ray's bail was set at $5 million, the "self-help guru" claimed he was broke.

"Despite misconceptions perpetrated in the media, Mr. Ray is not a man of significant assets and certainly not the millions reported in the press," Ray's lawyer wrote in court documents obtained by the Associated Press in February of 2010. Those documents are now officially sealed.

Darrow's ruling went further to say
that
evidence of Ray's refund policy for "spiritual warrior" events like the tragedy in Sedona would be allowed if it affected one of the victim's participation in the ceremony. Those victims include 49-year-old Liz Neuman, of Prior Lake, Minnesota, who died of multiple-organ failure. The other two victims, 38-year-old Kirby Brown of Westtown, New York, and 40-year-old James Shore of Wisconsin, each fell victim to heat stroke after being in the sweat tent.

Ray's trial is scheduled to begin on February 16.

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12 comments
GeorgeReynolds
GeorgeReynolds

From what I have seen of the two witnesses, there is no indication from them that Mr Ray conducted the sweat lodge in a reckless manner. The first soft, overweight, couch potato, wimp, wannabe “warrior” witness, said yesterday, that at one point when she was concerned about one of the people who eventually died, Kirby Brown I believe, she called out five times in a loud voice that she felt there was something wrong with Kirby. Finally, someone in the dimly lit structure said she was okay. So what is everyone else in the sweat lodge supposed to believe? That Kirby Brown was okay, right?

GeorgeReynolds
GeorgeReynolds

From today's soft, couch potato, wannabe warrior witness, who was right next to Liz Neuman (one of the people who died), there was no indication she was afraid to approach Mr Ray when she was concerned about Liz Neuman. Mr Ray told this witness that Liz had done this before and she knew what she was doing. The witness then went back to Liz and asked her if she was okay. Liz said she was fine. What is this woman supposed to believe? I mean, this is a couch potato, soft, wannabe warrior of a woman who, I believe, stayed in the sweat lodge the entire time, lying down, with Liz Neuman leaning against her leg (I believe). This couch potato wannabe warrior endured the entire event and suffered no permanent damage. Liz Neuman was experienced with the sweat lodge and said she was fine. What are people supposed to believe? If you are concerned about someone in a sauna and they say they are fine what are you to do, ESPECIALLY, if they paid big money to be in that particular sauna? You believe them, right?

GeorgeReynolds
GeorgeReynolds

This whole trial is based on the assumption that Mr Ray conducted the sweat lodge in a reckless manner. I believe, if he did so the State of Arizona has the legal right to break the liability waiver the participants signed and then convict James Arthur Ray of manslaughter. So far there is NO INDICATION WHATSOEVER that Mr Ray conducted the sweat lodge in a reckless manner. Today the witness said that, at one point, a participant close to her said something to the effect, 'I've got to get out!' the person got up and left the sweat lodge. The person did not say, 'I want to get out, but I'm afraid of Mr Ray'. That's what this case is all about. It's about trying to prove that people stayed in the sweat lodge against their better judgment because they were afraid of Mr Ray. So far there is no indication whatsoever that people who wanted to leave the sweat lodge were afraid to do so because of Mr Ray. A couch potato, wimp, warrior wannabe endured the entire event, I believe, without ever leaving the sweat lodge. Whenever asked, Liz Neuman said she was okay. What more needs to be determined?

GeorgeReynolds
GeorgeReynolds

Today the soft, wimp, couch potato warrior wannabe witness was asked about “The Samural Game”. She immediately started to smile. There was no feeling of dread and fear, as the media wanted to portray the game. Ray played the part of God and she was a priest who was allowed to ask God questions. I believe the penalty for breaking silence was to allegorically die. It meant you dropped on the spot and remained motionless and silent for hours. When asked what she expected to gain from the game she wasn't certain. That's all I needed to hear. Here is a dimwit of a woman who participates in a game with uncomfortable penalties. She doesn't know exactly why she is playing and she doesn't even bother to ask anyone afterward what she was supposed to gain from the experience. Some “warrior”. I believe The Samurai game was to teach people to take responsibility for their actions and to force them to develop essential inner-silence and stillness by placing a silence penalty if silence was broken

Tam1
Tam1

Unfortunately, people have died in sweat lodges. Heat exhaustion, dehydration and smoke inhalation can all lead to death if the symptoms aren't recognized early. Certainly the elderly and anyone with a compromised immune system should speak with a physician before partaking in a sweat. For others ready to give it a try, know the above-mentioned warning signs and don't be afraid to leave the sweat lodge during the ceremony. ( this is from a website on Sweat lodges)We all believe that everyone was in good health because there kids said so. But I dont tell my kids about my health concerns and my parents did not tell me about there health concerns....I have been to many of James Ray Events and found him to overly causious.....And generally concerned and a humble human being......I was there for one of his Birthdays and he could only be desribed as humble and a little embarsed they were even celebrating his birthday......He has genuin concern for he people and the planet....I feel bad for those left behind that died but we are all to quick to sue and judge, especially when it comes to someone elses belief system....I am waiting for all the evidence to come out before I make my decision and I will praying that the truth comes out.....

Lee Majorbig
Lee Majorbig

To Aqualobo,

The sweat lodge was obviously safe enough for the strongest and the wisest. Most were not injured. So, you are saying that if Ray encouraged you to stay in a sweat lodge when you KNEW you were dying you would stay in? Why wouldn't you stay in if you are not prevented from leaving? I don't care who may be encouraging me to stay in a sweat lodge. If I feel I can't handle it I leave. If Ray tried to stop me I would kick him in the nuts!

Any idiot who stays in when they know they can't handle it deserves whatever may happen as a result. Adults should not be treated like retarded children. They should be FORCED to take responsibility for their actions!

Lee Majorbig
Lee Majorbig

Search into the matter and you will find that if you are to have a Native America vision quest without taking hallucinogenic plants you have to be taken to the very edge of your endurance. You have to learn the difference between what you THINK you can endure and what you ACTUALLY can endure. To be a true warrior you ABSOLUTELY MUST take full responsibility for your actions. Blaming your bad decisions on others is not for successful warriors in life. There is a world of difference between 'playing full-on' and 'playing over the edge' the difference is the difference between life...and death

Agualobo
Agualobo

James Ray has put several people in the hospital over the years ! ! ! ! He is a Murderer ! ! ! ! I have spoke with people who were inside the "tent" . . . . he verbally encouraged them to stay inside ! and not leave . . . . he should be held accountable ! ! ! !

Josh
Josh

So, if someone offered you that kind of money for your services you are too 'good' to take the money? I doubt it. Your big gripe is that your services aren't worth $9,000.00 a week.

GeorgeJ
GeorgeJ

How much money do you think this trial will cost James Arthur Ray?

Mistalee
Mistalee

So he's either filthy rich or penniless, he can't remember which.

I remember this. It's the Symington defense.

Crazed Country Rebel
Crazed Country Rebel

he is a fag and a millionaire. that solves that big mystery. why does one need a self help guru if your suppose to be helping yourself?

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