A former cult leader and resident of Marietta, Georgia, charged with killing two toddlers is expected to live the rest of her life in prison.
“Seventy-nine-year-old Anna Elizabeth Young, who ran the so-called ‘House of Prayer’ cult in Alachua County, Florida in the ’80s, was sentenced to 30 years behind bars after pleading no contest to charges of manslaughter and murder,” 11 Alive reported Saturday.
Young pled no contest to murdering toddler Emon “Moses” Harper and no contest in the charge of manslaughter regarding the death of toddler Katonya Jackson.
“She was convicted Wednesday of killing both,” the outlet said.
Her daughter, Joy Fluker, called police in 2016, which eventually led to Young’s arrest one year later in Marietta.
“What I’m not going to do is lie about the lives that were lost during all of this … the journey,” Fluker commented. “I feel like if I live with those, I’m just as guilty.”
Survivors of the cult said Young beat the toddlers and Emon starved and died while he was locked in a closet, according to First Coast News.
The House of Prayer was initially set up as a religious boarding school but became a place where people were starved, burned, and whipped with extension cords.
However, John Neal, Katonya’s older brother, said he felt like justice was done this week.
“It felt good to be able to talk to Anna and let her know the damage she did,” he commented, adding, “My sister was a human being, she was loved. My mom loved her, I loved her and she was kind of treated like trash but we got justice today.”
Young is accused of locking the girl in a closet and withholding medication that resulted in her death, according to WCJB.
“It feels good because this has been a long time coming. My sister was killed 38 years ago and during those 38 years, I often wondered if this day would ever come,” Neal concluded.