Self-Proclaimed BG Minister Arrested for Kidnapping

By: Jonathan Hardison
By: Jonathan Hardison

Self-proclaimed minister Mary Spears is in Warren County Jail on $100,000 cash bond, facing kidnapping charges. Spears is the leader of Diverse Sanctuary, a youth group she says is designed as a safe haven for troubled teens.

One of those troubled teens, 15-year-old Brittany Cardwell ran away from her father's house in the middle of the night on July 8th, and had not been seen since. Sherriff's Deputies initially questioned "Rev." Spears regarding Cardwell's whereabouts, but she denied knowing where Brittany was, but disappeared after the investigation focused on her.

An anonymous tip and cooperation from one of Spears' followers led police to arrest Spears on Thursday night in Bowling Green. During questioning Spears gave deputies the number of a man in Appleton, Wis. who knew where to find Brittany, and Appleton police picked her up around 1:30 a.m.

Brittany is now on her way home, and her parents have told authorities they hope to have a mental evaluation done to get Brittany the help she needs.

Meanwhile, Spears faces possible federal charges because she is alleged to have transported a minor across state lines.

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