Church Elder Allegedly Killed Wife because Divorce wasn’t Option

Church of God

Every nation, every culture, every religion has been faced with the question of how to deal with incompatible marriages. One man reportedly solved his marriage problems by killing his wife. Stephen Allwine, 44, a church elder at the United Church of God, has been charged with killing his wife because his church has strict rules about divorce. The church views marriage as a lifelong commitment and prohibits divorce for its members.

According to his LinkedIn page, Stephen works as an IT specialist at an insurance company and has long been active in ministry at the United Church of God. His position in the church prevented him from divorcing. Prosecutors say Allwine, an Internet technology specialist, was using the infidelity website Ashley Madison to cheat on his wife, Amy. Amy, 44, was found dead from a gunshot wound to the head inside the family's home in Cottage Grove on the evening of November 13, 2016.

Allwine had an affair during his marriage to Amy, meeting on the website (for married people seeking extramarital affairs) Ashley Madison. Madison stated that they had an intimate relationship for several months during which they were taking trips together.

Stephen Allwine is also accused of using the Dark Web, the World Wide Web content that exists on darknets — overlay networks which use the Internet but require specific software, configurations or authorization to access. He was using an anonymous alias, “dogdaygod,” to hire an Albanian mafia group to off his wife. The problem is that the original plan had failed and Allwine did it by his own hands. He shot her with a gun he bought three months earlier and staged the crime scene to make it look like a suicide.

But the dark Web machinations suddenly took on new significance in November 2016 when Amy Allwine was discovered dead on the floor of her bedroom. Initially thought to be a suicide, police soon suspected foul play. Within months, they would allege Stephen Allwine was actually “dogdaygod.” He had killed his wife after Besa Mafia failed to come through.

Allwine went on trial this week for premeditated first-degree murder, and the prosecution says his faith — and position in the church — led him to kill. “He was seeing other women but he didn’t want to divorce her because of his position in the church,” Washington County prosecutor Jamie Kreuser told a jury this week, the Star Tribune reported. The Allwine murder trial is expected to last two weeks. 

What is the worst in this story is that the church directly led to the murder of one person. Due to the divorce prohibition, the United Church of God is partly responsible for Amy's death. And this is not the first time that church doctrines, such as celibacy, divorce prohibition, etc., hurt people.

Photo Credits: Wikimedia

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