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Janie Peterson

Former scientologist.
Former member of the Guardian Office.


Clearwater Sun: "Witnesses Tell of Break-ins, Conspiracy" by Steven Girardi

«Janie Peterson, who worked in the Las Vegas Guardian Office until 1979, testified earlier the office operated community programs such as Gerus Society, Apple Schools and Narconon with a stated purpose "to make Scientology indispensable to the community. It was basically public relations."

The money from the programs, she said, went to a fund to finance church attacks on its enemies.»

Jon Atack: "A Piece of Blue Sky: The Clearwater Hearings"

«Janie Peterson, who had belonged to the Guardian's Office, testified about her departure from Scientology: "I was terrified to even discuss the possibility of leaving Scientology with my own husband. I was afraid that he would stay in Scientology. I was afraid that he would write me up to the Guardian's Office and that they would then come and take me away somewhere because I had so much information."

Scientology had driven such a wedge between Peterson and her husband that she did not realize that he was also contemplating leaving. Neither dared tell the other. After leaving, she received a series of phone calls in which the caller would hang up when the phone was answered. Then she found a note in her car saying simply, "Watch it." Then a note in her mailbox saying, "Die." In the middle of the night, she would hear a knock on her door, and open it to find no one there.»

City of Clearwater Commission Hearing: The Church of Scientology - Day 4, Janie Peterson

«MR. LeCHER:

In your outline you have "Scientology" — number three, "Scientology Policies and Practices: Potential Trouble Source, PTS, and Disconnect," if one uniformly appeared, and, number two, "policies applied to personal experience, divorce, husband — give children to husband."

Is that something that you could — that personally happened to you or is it a common policy?

MS. PETERSON:

That's something that was applied to me.

At one point, when I was in the Guardian's Office, my husband wanted me to leave the Guardian's Office. He did not want me to leave Scientology; he just simply didn't want me to work so many hours and be away from my children so much. And I was sort of undecided as to whether I should do that or not. He and I began having a lot of problems over it. I — basically, I just felt that I didn't want him to push me into a decision. I wanted to make it on my own. And it was causing some problems. I was quite ill at the time. I was having stomach problems and various problems because of this pressure.

I was sent to the United States Guardian's Office in an attempt to do what they call handle it. And I was given what they call a Chaplain's Court, basically, where a so-called minister of the Church comes and gives you counseling, marriage counseling. He — his name was Paul, Paul Sheffield.

I was told at that time by Mr. Sheffield, at the very beginning of the interview, that he basically didn't care whether my husband and I stayed together. And the purpose of the counseling was to keep me on staff because I was needed very badly. He then wrote up a program of how my husband and I were supposed to handle our differences.

And I was then called into the office and one of my seniors, one of my bosses, told me that the problem between my husband and I was becoming totally out of — totally out of control, totally out of hand, and that, basically, he — what he wanted me to do and what I should do and what others had done was to divorce my husband. And since I had two small children and I was — financially, I would have been unable to support them, I should give them to my husband because he could support the children and I could leave the children all day long. And that if I did not do that, that I was letting the whole organization down and that there would be ramifications.»

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