Globe and Mail: Gruener is looking to religion

From XFamily - Children of God

Gruener is looking to religion

The Globe and Mail/1978-03-11

A relieved-looking Werner Gruener, 29, said last night, minutes after being acquitted, that he hoped to return to a religious commune with the Children of God sect that he follows.

God willing, I'll maybe move around, see my parents, plus I'd like to get to the Children of God. I'd definitely like to go to Germany. Mr. Gruener was born in Germany.

Looking as dazed as he had for the eight weeks in court, Mr. Gruener said he had strong convictions in my beliefs in the Bible.

When asked if he had ever lost faith during seven months in an isolation cell, he said, No, I haven't lost no hope at all.

I'm not the type of person to hold a grudge, Mr. Gruener said in a monotone. I'm a friendly person.

He said that what he disliked most about his hard ordeal in prison was being called names by others. When we passed the kitchen staff they would say, 'There go those stupid idiots.' I'd ignore it. If you don't say nothin', they don't say nothin'. He said he wrote 65 different poems in jail to pass the time and he once drew a doodle of some figure that looked like a mouse.

My lawyer advised me not to read the Bible, he said without elaborating. I had to do something to pass my time.

Smiling shyly as he was rushed by reporters and cameramen, he said, I don't like to push my religion on anyone. It's a free world.

Earl Levy, lawyer for Mr. Gruener, said that when he first saw his client after the verdict was read, Mr. Gruener said nothing. I don't think Werner Gruener thinks beyond the day.

Mr. Levy commended Judge A.W. Maloney, saying that the long trial had been like being in a pressure cooker and with a man without his temperament all the counsels would have been jumping at each other.

The 40-year old defence lawyer, who six years ago married a woman whom he met serving on jury duty, said his present ambition was to go home and play with my kids.