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Crime

Sgt.: Guru Didn’t Admit To Leading Sweat Lodge

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James Ray was arrested on Feb. 3, 2010 for the deaths at an Oct. 8, 2009 ceremony intended to be the highlight of his five-day "Spiritual Warrior" event. (credit: Yavapai County Sheriff's Office)

James Ray was arrested on Feb. 3, 2010 for the deaths at an Oct. 8, 2009 ceremony intended to be the highlight of his five-day “Spiritual Warrior” event. (credit: Yavapai County Sheriff’s Office)

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CAMP VERDE, Ariz. (AP) – A Yavapai County sheriff’s sergeant who responded to a deadly sweat lodge ceremony says a self-help author told him someone else was in charge.

Three people died following the October 2009 ceremony near Sedona.

James Arthur Ray is on trial for three counts of manslaughter. He has pleaded not guilty.

The Prescott Daily Courier reports that Sergeant Frank Barbaro encountered Ray and asked him what he did for a living. Barbaro says Ray responded that he helped people change their lives and added that a man named Ted was in charge of the ceremony.

The judge ruled some of Barbaro’s statements inadmissible before the trial began. That meant the jury didn’t hear that a sheriff’s lieutenant told Barbaro that Ray was advised against making a statement.

Barbaro resumes testimony Thursday.

(© Copyright 2011 The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

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