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Who is Amy Carlson? Cult leader whose death in Colorado made headlines is now the subject of an HBO documentary

Cult leader Amy Carlson's death in Colorado made headlines
Cult leader Amy Carlson's death in Colorado made headlines 01:41

A Colorado woman who was the leader of a cult is the subject of a new HBO documentary. Amy Carlson founded the Love Has Won cult in 2006 and her death two years ago made headlines after she was found in a mummified state in a home.

Amy Carlson Dr. Phil Show

In an HBO preview of "Love Has Won: The Cult of Mother God," videos are shown in which Carlson, who also went by Lia, claims she is 19 billion years old and once lived as Jesus.

Law enforcement became aware of Carlson's death when Saguache County Sheriff's deputies arrived at the home in 2021 near Crestone in southern Colorado. They responded to the location after a report from the father of a 2-year-old child which indicated the toddler was being held in the home.

Carlson was known as Mother God to her followers. Her body was found decorated with Christmas lights. She died as a result of alcohol abuse, anorexia and chronic colloidal silver ingestion, according to the Saguache County coroner.

After the discovery of Carlson's body, several followers of Carlson were taken into custody for suspicion of abuse of a corpse. Those charges were later dropped for all of the Love Has Won members.

Carlson's cult was the subject of an episode of the Dr. Phil Show the prior year. It highlighted how Carlson told her followers she could repair people's brains and perform spiritual surgeries. It also described how Carlson said she would ascend to the 5th Dimension and that she had been reincarnated 534 times. She also claimed to have been Joan of Arc, Marilyn Monroe and Cleopatra. Love Has Won's unusual practices allegedly included standing for very long stretches of time without any sitting and getting a minimal amount of sleep. 

Members of her cult said on the show that a lot of the reports about their group were false.

Dr. Phil Questions Followers Of Love Has Won Group As They Defend Leader by Dr. Phil on YouTube

Love Has Won members said Carlson had been ill for a long time before her death. 

Andrew Profaci was once a member of Love Has Won. In an interview with CBS News Colorado, he said he came into Carlson's orbit when he was in a period of what he described as an awakening. He met her in an online chat and after arriving in the Crestone area Profaci said Carlson told him he would be Father God to her Mother God. Profaci said he left he group because his growth was taking him in a different direction. He also said the cult had become harsh in the way it treated people.

In HBO's preview, the voice of CBS News Colorado reporter Rick Sallinger can be heard. He covered the case across several months and was there when some of the Love Has Won members were released from jail. He asked them if they thought Carlson would be reincarnated and one responded "Maybe she will come off a starship."

The "three-part docuseries" is described as follows by HBO.

Love Has Won: The Cult of Mother God chronicles the life and death of Amy Carlson, also known as Mother God, a self-proclaimed spiritual savior who built a cult through her online manifestos and live-streaming sessions. As Amy's health declined, her followers believed her death would lead to her evacuation by UFO and salvation for humanity. Told through the eyes of Amy's devotees and constructed from the cult's archival footage, the three-part docuseries captures the perils of internet proselytizing and a conspiracy-driven faith. 

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