Higher Purpose: March 1996

The Higher Purpose Group

On the morning of March 15, 1996, thirteen members of a cult calling themselves the Higher Purpose Group committed suicide, invoking what they referred to as a ‘rite of supplication’ and facilitating—they believed—their ascent into heaven.

A fourteenth member, Adam Booth, was found on the scene of the suicides and taken into custody by the police, under suspicion of murder.

Curious about the Higher Purpose Group? Watch this space in the coming weeks.

Reporter: Anne Westcott
Elder Paul: Jim Westcott
Adam Booth: Landyn Banx
Investigator: Nikki Kruex
Brother Michael: Dan Quaile
Cult Members: Steve Wothe, Amity Carlson, Donna Longson, Scarlet Salem, Lauri Mueller, Connie Newville, Ava Preston, Jayde Delano, Margaret Feldman, Matt Franta

Written & Directed by Andrew Gingerich

Associate Producer: Landyn Banx

Director of Photography: Kathryn Criston
Gaffer/Assistant Camera: Matt Kane
Second Unit Director: Ethan Holbrook
Second Unit Director of Photography: Parker Cagle-Smith

16 thoughts on “Higher Purpose: March 1996

  1. This is only second-unit footage. All the REAL footage is headed off to Maryland for processing and then Delden for transfer.

    I’m excited, and I don’t want to toot my own horn too much, but expect something amazing.

  2. More practice? She sounded exactly like a reporter on the scene. I was pretty astounded that she could pull the reporter inflections of so well for all the mess happening around her!

  3. Whoa whoa whoa. Three comments on my own comment? I must be popular. Seriously, though, I was just nitpicking.

    However, I’ll accept Andrew’s response – she’s local news and just got there. Maybe this was even her first mass suicide with cult implications, but what threw me off is the halting speech. Reporters generally don’t talk like that. As for Vvinni, of course they aren’t actors – so they shouldn’t sound like someone trying to act like a reporter.

    Again, though, I’m really only nitpicking. She did a great job, as did everyone else that we saw.

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