This was originally posted at http://web.archive.org/web/20041124211810/http://www.napanet.com/~moiraj/wwwboard/messages/2374.html but the link may no longer work.
Posted by Karen Jones on February 20, 1999 at 17:41:37:
Overview of the Presidio Case and
Investigations in Northern California
In 1984-85 there were reports of sexual-ritual abuse at Jubilation Daycare,
operated by Barbara Orr in Fort Bragg, Northern California. This case was
investigated by Mendocino County Sheriff deputies. Eventually some 400 pages of
reports were submitted, but the DA declined to prosecute, resulting in no criminal
charges filed against Orr. Due to the fact there was a history of complaints against
the daycare center, some of which were upheld and one cited a child experiencing
unusual punishment, Barbara Orr ultimately surrendered her childcare license in
Many children from this daycare center entered therapy with Pamela Hudson
LCSW, who later described her experiences with these traumatized children and
her abrupt introduction into ritual abuse in her published overview describing
several cases, as well as a chapter in the book, *Treating Survivors of Satanist
Abuse*, edited by Valerie Sinason, 1994. The Presidio case is also briefly
described in the *Journal of Orthopsychiatry* 62(2), April 1992.
In 1987 charges were filed twice against Gary Hambright, one of the Presidio
daycare staff. These charges were ultimately dismissed against Hambright due to
many factors, including jurisdictional confusion (crimes appeared to take place on
and off base, explained in the news article "Army of the Night"), the prosecutor
choosing which kids were to testify (many of whom were deemed too young to
qualify as witnesses, didn't have clear findings of molestation or who were
describing rituals which made the attorney's uncomfortable), and some
victim-witnesses being transferred to other Army bases. Some parents to this day
don't understand why their kids who were older, who had clear findings of sexual
molest and could identify their perpetrators, weren't called to testify. Gary
Hambright reportedly died of AIDS a few years later.
At that time, Michael Aquino was a Lt. Col. in the Army Reserves and a
member of Army military intelligence. He has been and is the leader of his own
satanic cult/"church", the Temple of Set, for 20 years which the Army was aware
of. He was stationed at the Presidio Army Base in San Francisco and was
investigated by the San Francisco police for child molest allegations in 1987. A
_Newsweek_ article dated November 16, 1987 entitled, "The Second Beast of
Revelation' Claims of Satanism and child molesting", is typical of just one of
dozens of news articles describing the case as it made national and international
news. Interestingly, Aquino's mother (who is now deceased) was noted to be a
Temple of Set high priestess and the owner of a building rented to an organization
that helped families find daycare.
As described in appellate documents, SFPD dropped their investigation in
1988. In September 1988, after meeting with officials involved in the now closed
SF investigation, the Criminal Investigation Division (CID) of the Army began
investigating Aquino in multiple jurisdictions, including Mendocino and Sonoma
Counties in Northern California. Their investigation also included alleged victims
from the Jubilation Day Care Center/Fort Bragg (Orr Case) and elsewhere.
The CID taped their interviews with the children and some of them identified
Aquino from a video lineup of men dressed exactly like him. Some of these
children who had described ritual molest, murder and cannibalism on videotape
had testified against Charlotte Thrailkill and Daryl Ball during an 18-month
preliminary hearing which ended approximately Sept. 1988 - (Case #14750-C
Santa Rosa)The children said on CID videotapes that the people who hurt them
were part of a "devil worship club." The parents held a news conference
describing these allegations. The psychological trauma these children experienced
was described in an article summarizing the results of the plea-bargain and
sentencing of Ball/Thrailkill.
Michael Aquino notes these are the allegations as I've framed them to be but
states there was no merit to them and the Army didn't believe them either.
However, this portrayal of the Army's position is in stark contrast to their actual
stated position as described in a transcript of the hearing on the motion to dismiss
dated May 31, 1991. It is also a mystery as to why there is only one child listed in
the alleged victim block of the report but the word "children" is used frequently
throughout the documentation. The details of the Army Argument also gives more
information about the case as well as the Army Exhibit list which includes the
ordering information for these documents at the end of the page.
Aquino sued the Army in part because they refused to remove his name from the
titling block or amend their report stating he was the subject of an investigation for
sexual abuse and related crimes. The court document notes that several members
of the Army thought there was probable cause to "Title" Aquino with offenses of
indecent acts with a child, sodomy, conspiracy, kidnapping, and false swearing.
Aquino tried to charge a Captain, the father who reported his child's alleged abuse
and whose child's name appears in the victim block of the report, with "conduct
unbecoming an officer." Due to that, Aquino was titled for false swearing, in
addition to "indecent acts with a child, sodomy, conspiracy, and kidnapping." He
also filed complaints against the SFPD, therapists involved in the case, journalists
and CID investigating officers.
The Titling [which standard is probable cause to believe offenses have been
committed] remained and the Report of Investigation was issued 3 month after the
criminal statute of limitations ran, according to the appellate document dated Feb.
26, 1992 that upheld the lower court's ruling. The document also notes that the
investigation "resulted from relevant considerations and was not tainted by
consideration of officer's satanist religious beliefs and pressure from United States
Senator." Aquino's damage claim and exhibit list also describes, in part, his loss of
retirement benefits and the evidence of his separation from active duty.
There were never any criminal charges filed against Michael Aquino. Some of
details of the Army-Aquino case would not have been made public except for the
fact that Aquino's lawsuit against the Army placed these documents within the
public domain, as well as the two published reports and internal documentation.
But the military will not release the Report of Investigation or any of the other
items shown on the exhibit list due to the Privacy Act. Aquino disputes much of
what's stated in the documents but refuses to provide any information to the
The Army bestowed a multi-million dollar settlement on the alleged child
at the Presidio.
As follow-up to what various parties have done since the Presidio investigation:
-Col. Rafferty, who was the Commander of the Presidio Army Base, became CEO
of the Neptune Society that offers cremation services.
-Linda Blood, an ex-member of the Temple of Set, wrote a book about this case
called _The New Satanists_ 1994. She and Time-Warner publishers were sued by
Michael Aquino in 1994 (Case# C943779 SC) and the court case was dismissed
with prejudice in Feb. 10, 1995 after a settlement agreement was reached between
them that Linda Blood's lawyer states was made to save on court costs.
- In June 1994, a woman named Lillian Rosoff claimed she was a cult member of
Aquino's organization and she filed a restraining order against him because he
reportedly harassed her when she wanted to leave. In Sept. 94, he reached a
confidential settlement agreement with her and claimed she was never a member
of his group.
- In the early 1990's a young man named Paul Bonacci came forward with
allegations about Michael Aquino and violent cult mind control abuse.
- In 1995, Cathy O'Brien and Mark Phillips wrote a book called _Trance
Formation of America_, alleging child abuse and mind control at the hands of
Michael Aquino. Mr. Aquino doesn't seem to mind the allegations in this particular
book and has made no effort to stop its publication or distribution, which has
prompted me to ask him on several occasions whether he also co-wrote it as a
- Throughout the years 1997 to the present, Michael Aquino has been filing
frivolous, harassing lawsuits against parties who are involved in the publishing of
this information (Electriciti Internet Company - dismissed twice) or alleging he
would sue them for "defamation" (Tripod Web pages 1/28/99), and has done his
best to censor anyone who posts this, claiming they are guilty of internet "criminal
-In Sept. 98, Charlotte Thrailkill was named the first violent female sexual
predator in the State of California and she was sent back to a mental hospital after
violating her parole.
[Ritual Abuse Network] [MTC Forums]
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