'48 Hours' Questions Role Of Scientology In Murder, Scientologists Question CBS Ethics - 2006-11-02
On Saturday, "48 Hours" ran a story about the 2003 murder of Elli Perkins, a murder that her 28-year-old son Jeremy confessed to committing. Jeremy had been hallucinating and behaving erratically before his mother's death, but his parents, devout Scientologists, resisted giving him psychiatric treatment. As "48 Hours" notes, "[s]ome pro-Scientology materials declare that psychiatrists are not only useless, but evil – their medications nothing but poisons." The Perkins' opted to medicate their son primarily with vitamins.
The Scientology community was not happy with the story, which raised the possibility that Elli Perkins might not have been murdered had her son been given psychiatric treatment. The group refused to provide "48 Hours" with an official spokesman and began taking action to influence the broadcast. "They hit us with numerous e-mails and there were some people at CBS or at '48 Hours' who they knew personally, and so there were some personal requests made as well," says CBS News Senior Vice President, Standards and Special Projects Linda Mason.