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368,379 people killed, 306,096 injured and over $2,815,931,000 in economic damages

What's the harm in hypnosis?

Hypnosis can be fun as part of a live entertainment. But when it is used as part of therapy or court proceedings, bad things can happen.  Read more about hypnosis

Here are 6 people who were harmed by someone not thinking critically.

Patricia Burgus

Age: 41
Chicago, Illinois

False memories induced, $10.6M judgement
1986 - 1992

She said her therapist convinced her she had repressed memories of being part of a satanic cult by using hypnosis and other techniques. She eventually received $10.6 million in a settlement. Read more

Edward Honaker

Nelson County, Virginia

Wrongly convicted, 9.5 years in prison
1985 - 1994

He was convicted of a crime solely based on eyewitness testimony. Prosecutors withheld the fact that they used hypnosis to "enhance" that testimony. This is not allowed in court. A DNA test exonerated him years later and he received a full pardon. Read more & more

Larry Mayes

Age: 32
Hammond, Indiana

Wrongly convicted, 18 years in prison
1982 - 1999

He was wrongly convicted of rape via an eyewitness misidentification. It was not revealed at trial that the witness had been hypnotized for the identification. This is not allowed in court. He was exonerated by DNA evidence and awarded $9 Million. Read more & more & more

Mary Sommerfeld

Arden Hills, Minnesota

False memories, $175K damages
1994 - 1995

She sought treatment for trauma from abuse as a child. The therapist allegedly used guided imagery, dream interpretation, hypnosis and other tactics to induce false memories of ritual cult abuse & incest. She sued, the case was settled out of court. Read more

Leo Waters

Age: 35
Jacksonville, North Carolina

Wrongly convicted, 21 years in prison
1982 - 2003

He was convicted of a crime based on eyewitness testimony, bolstered by hypnosis. A DNA test exonerated him, but only after he served 21 years in prison. He received a pardon and compensation from the state. Read more

Photo of Glen Woodall

Glen Woodall

Huntington, West Virginia

Wrongfully convicted, 4.5 years in prison
1987 - 1992

He was found guilty based on eyewitness testimony from witnesses that were secretly hypnotized. He served years in prison before being exonerated by DNA tests which proved he could not have been the perpetrator. Read more

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