Violent Attacks Directed at Florida Pagan Author Continue


On March 30, The Wild Hunt posted the story of Kyrja Withers, a New Port Richey resident and Pagan children’s book author who has endured shots fired through her windows in addition to anti-Pagan epithets shouted by unidentified drive-by harassers.

The local New Port Richey Patch also published an article about these incidents on April 2nd, and another news update today shows escalating forms of violence including a plastic bottle chemical bomb that exploded in her front yard on the evening of April 15th. Interestingly, this ‘bombing’ happened just a few hours after the Boston Marathon attacks had begun to fill media headlines. Kyrja’s stepdaughter Heather inhaled fumes from the explosion and is under medical treatment for damage to her respiratory tract.

Local police are currently investigating these incidents. Kyrja is offering a $200 reward for any information about the perpetrators of the shootings and the chemical bottle explosion. Tips leading to the arrest and conviction of whoever is behind the incidents can be emailed to Kyrja at and the police department can be called at (727) 841-4550. You can visit her Facebook Page to send along messages of support, or visit her book fan website at

Her Pagan children’s book, “Rupert’s Tales: The Wheel of the Year” follows the adventures of Rupert the Rabbit who discovers the different Pagan holidays. A short biography of Ms. Withers’ spiritual journey from a devout Roman Catholic to a practicing Pagan, and her inspiration for writing “Rupert Tales”, was featured in a 2011 Tampa Bay Times article.

Please stay tuned to PNC Florida and The Wild Hunt for developing updates to this story. Our thoughts and prayers are with Ms. Withers, her family, her neighbors and community.


  1. Elna G Mooneyham says:

    But it does me no injury for my neighbor to say there are twenty gods or no God. It neither picks my pocket nor breaks my leg.
    -Thomas Jefferson, Notes on Virginia, 1782

  2. Chris says:

    Sending you love and prayers!

  3. Shanene says:

    How awful! My husband and I are sorry and heartbroken to hear of the horrific events happening to your family. I can’t get over how ignorant, judgmental, and hateful so many people are in this country.

    Our prayers are with you for healing, protection, and strength! May peace come to your home. Blessed Be.

  4. Elizabeth says:

    Stay strong! I hope whoever is doing this is quickly caught and punished accordingly.

  5. Kerry says:

    Keep your chin up and your hands typing! Things will get better *hug*

  6. Sigh…. I am so sorry to hear of all this, Kyrja. My focus here will be that justice prevails and you are left in peace. I hope your daughter is alright! Have lit a candle for you in Temple.

    Love, Lianna

  7. Suebear says:

    This is precisely why so many pagans fear being open. My heart to yours and prayers for your daughter. Keep up the good works you do and may justice be swift.

  8. Jo says:

    Ignorant people. And yet we can publish books of all different types of violence and hate and no one is bombing or shooting at those Authors. You keep up the good work.

  9. Jo says:

    Ignorant people. People can write books that contain violence, hate etc and no one is shooting or bombing those Authors. You keep up the great work you are doing.

  10. Allen Reeves says:

    This is just sad. Daily I hear how we (Pagans) aren’t persecuted or attacked, and yet this clearly is the reason why I’m told it; few know. Thank you for bringing this attention to public notice, and I hope the attackers are caught and such actions halted.

    On the plus side, looks like I’ve found some potential Pagan children’s books for my future kids!

  11. eagle eyes says:

    my thoughts and prayers going out to you and the family
    hope they catch the psychotic evil doing scumbag cowards doing this to you and your family soon soon soon

  12. Mela says:

    While I am very sorry this is happening to you and your family – I’m very glad to hear that there are Pagan children’s books in the world. I have a 2 month old baby, and I can’t wait to go out & buy them to read to her!


  13. Kyrja says:

    My husband, Randy, and I would like to thank each of you for your concern and your support. We are eager to return to our delightfully enchanting life, but understand how important it is to stand up and be counted, in an effort to “normalize” our faith. We are working very closely with Lady Liberty League in an effort to coordinate a measured response to both the capture and prosecution of those who committed the crimes, AND to educate those who have been caught up in this affair. I told Selena Fox that we should have an assembly at the high schools and I will read “Rupert’s Tales” to all the students so they can begin to get a clue. (smile)

  14. Siouxi says:

    We all feel angry, no, outraged that this kind of persecution is happening in 2013. The question then becomes what can we do? What practical assistance can we offer Kyrja and her family. Any ideas?

    • Aequitas says:

      Anytime there is media surrounding this or any other Pagan civil rights case, we as individuals should take the time to respond (comments on a blog or social media, for example) with eloquent, succinct, helpful responses, addressing distortions if they occur, being careful not to rant. Also, protection and healing magick for Kryja and her family is also an idea, they have given permission for this.

  15. Amber K says:

    Kyrja, may the strength and protection of the Lady and the Lord encircle you. Sending protective energy; have courage until the Wheel turns and better times arrive. Blessed be, Amber and Azrael

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