Amanda Knox: How Prisons Use Cult Tactics to Brainwash Inmates Into Religion
Katie McKibben and the Orange County Superior Court both agree on one thing: In July 2013, 25-year-old McKibben failed to remain sober while on home arrest for her third DUI. She had been struggling with alcoholism throughout her early 20s, couldn’t manage it on her own, and needed help. That’s where their agreement ends.
According to the court, McKibben was ordered to participate in a 90-day inpatient rehabilitation program at a county-contracted women’s facility in Santa Ana called the Villa. There, from August until November, McKibben received the help she needed. At her regular check-ins with the court, McKibben praised the program for its positive influence. The end.
According to McKibben, “that’s false.” At her sentencing, McKibben agreed to in-patient rehabilitation, but she objected to the Villa for two reasons. One, it was at full capacity. Two, the Villa only offered a 12-step faith-based program, and McKibben identified as a secular humanist. She begged the judge for a non-religious option, and was refused. “The judge consulted with my probation officer who said, ‘Nope. She has to go to this program,’” McKibben recalls. “‘This is where we always send people, and that’s how it goes.’” (According to a court summary provided to Broadly, such an exchange between the judge and McKibben did not take place—however, as this was a misdemeanour charge, detailed transcripts were not taken.)