Former NFL lineman, wife arrested after accusations of child abuse

A missing 14-year-old boy was found “safe and well” and his parents taken into custody after a family member leveled accusations of child abuse. The bizarre story involves interstate travel, a former NFL defensive lineman, and a possible religious cult.

Last Friday, Indiana State Police issued a silver alert for a missing 14-year-old boy. For a few days in mid-June, the boy had been staying with his maternal grandmother, Cheryl Wright, who lives in Cleveland, Ohio. When Wright saw her grandson’s appearance, she immediately became alarmed.

Members consider themselves ‘a nation of Hebrew Israelites’ who are ‘obedient to Yah (God)’ and ‘Jesus the Christ.’

“His face was battered. When I got him, he had a black eye and busted lip,” Wright later told FOX 59. “His whole face was swollen. I can only imagine how many times he had been hit in the face for it to be like that.”

When Wright asked him about his injuries, the boy hesitated to talk about them but did claim his father — Daniel Muir, a 40-year-old former NFL defensive tackle — had caused them, she said. “It hurts me that anyone could be beaten like that. It hurts me that my daughter would allow anyone to do that to her child,” Wright said.

On June 16, the boy’s mother, 38-year-old Kristin Muir, came to pick him up from Wright’s home. Wright then immediately called police to report the alleged abuse.

Within a few minutes, cops managed to pull Kristin Muir’s vehicle over, but at that point, the boy was no longer with her. Police suspect he may have quickly changed vehicles after leaving his grandmother’s house.

In any case, the boy remained missing for weeks. Yet, despite his disappearance, his parents were not always helpful with the investigation, police said.

The family lives at a residence located on a large property in Logansport, Indiana, about 80 miles north of Indianapolis, that is actually owned by the Servant Leader’s Foundation, sometimes referred to as Straitway Truth Ministries, a Tennessee-based religious organization that some have called a cult. Members consider themselves “a nation of Hebrew Israelites” who are “obedient to Yah (God)” and “Jesus the Christ,” according to the group’s website.

Wright certainly has misgivings about the group. She told FOX 59 that her grandson “is so conditioned or brainwashed to their way of living that he wanted to go back. As I tried to get my daughter to leave, he ran out of the house and left with them.”

In press releases related to the missing boy, Indiana State Police stated that the Muirs’ home and the vehicle Kristin Muir had been driving when she was pulled over in Ohio are both owned by the Servant Leader’s Foundation in Kokomo, Indiana.

Last Friday, ISP’s patience with the Muirs seemed to run out. The couple had reportedly pledged to bring their son to meet with investigators at noon that day, but just an hour before the scheduled meeting, they “backed out,” a move that ISP interpretated as “an unwillingness to cooperate,” the press release said.

At 6 a.m. on Wednesday, members of the Indiana State Police SWAT team executed search and arrest warrants at the Muirs’ home. There, they found Daniel and Kristin Muir, as well as their 14-year-old son, who “appeared safe and well,” the ISP press release said.

Mr. and Mrs. Muir were then taken into custody. Both face one count of obstruction of justice, a level 6 felony, and Daniel Muir faces an additional count of misdemeanor domestic battery. It is unclear when they are scheduled to appear in court. The investigation into the case remains ongoing.

Daniel Muir spent four years playing for Kent State before being picked up by the Green Bay Packers after going undrafted in the 2007 NFL Draft. He then became a league journeyman, bouncing around to the Jets, Chiefs, and Rams, among other teams.

He also had two stints with the Colts, totaling about four seasons. Muir last saw the field in 2013 when he played for the Oakland Raiders.

In his entire career, Muir “recorded 128 tackles, 1.5 sacks, and had one pass deflection,” TMZ reported.

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