An evangelical Missouri man has been charged with illegally circumcising two teens.
Curtis W. Abbott, who is not a doctor, was indicted in August on two counts of child endangerment and one count of unauthorized practice of medicine or surgery, according to the Springfield News-Leader, a newspaper in Springfield, Missouri.
The case was handled by a grand jury, so much of the information about the case is not public, including any alleged motives.
However, Abbott, 47, is apparently the leader of a religious group. He started a group called Restore Bible Culture “after having multiple prophetic communications,” according to court filings in a 2017 divorce proceeding initiated by Abbott’s wife, the newspaper reported.
The group’s Facebook page has a photo of Abbott and an About section, which reads, “If you are interested in seeing Restored Bible Culture, then let's seek out God's ways together. God's ways are higher than the ways of men for He sees the end from the beginning and upholds all things by the word of His Power.”
During the divorce proceedings, Abbott’s ex-wife accused him being mentally abusive, controlling, and a believer in polygamy. In a written response, Abbott denied most of the charges, but defended polygamy.
“Polygamy is not in anyway [sic] condemned or looked down upon in the Bible and that many social ills pertaining to the stability of family would be balanced out if it were still in favor today,” he wrote, according to the Springfield News-Leader.
Abbott’s wife said he grew interested in polygamy in 2010 and proposed adding a “sister wife” to the family. She claimed that when she refused, Abbott called her refusal “rebellion” and evicted her from their home, the newspaper reports.
Abbott actually traveled far and wide looking for another wife to add to the marriage, according to the court filings. He went to the Philippines, Thailand and many places in the United States to “interview” prospects, but none met his stringent criteria.
In response to an inquiry, Abbott sent a statement to the Springfield News-Leader calling the allegations against him “false,” and said, “I look forward to our name being cleared on call counts.”
[Photo:Christian County Sheriff's Office]