Photo: James Arthur Ray.
Investigators conducted a lengthy interview with the Fredricksons in mid-January on condition that nothing they said would be used against them, in the case stemming from the deaths of three sweat lodge attendees last October. The couple went to work for Ray in 2005 at his Carlsbad, Calif.-based company — James Ray International — and took part in the retreat near Sedona, Ariz. that led to Ray being charged with manslaughter.
Photo: Liz Neuman died after sweat lodge incident.
Megan Fredrickson said people who were vomiting, unresponsive and unconscious raised no red flags with her because Ray had explained those responses were possibilities. She told authorities that her experience with sweat lodges was limited to the ones led by Ray, and she never took it upon herself to research them or find out why people would pass out.
"Ultimately the plan is we never really had a plan for the extent of what happened," said Josh Fredrickson. "Call paramedics, I think is the plan." The staff never was instructed to call 911, he said, but Ray appreciated that someone had done so.
Prosecutors contend Ray recklessly crammed participants into a 400-square-foot sweat lodge and chided them for wanting to leave, even as people were vomiting, getting burned by hot rocks, and lying lifeless on the ground. Public records show a pattern of illnesses at prior Ray-led events that he largely ignored.
Ray has pleaded not guilty to three counts of manslaughter. He is being held in a Yavapai County, Ariz., jail on a $5 million bond.
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