Sarah Lawrence Cult (Larry Ray)

A sinister manipulation within an elite college’s dorms, leading to a shocking criminal enterprise.

Larry Ray, a charismatic figure with a disturbing agenda, insinuated himself into the lives of his daughter’s college friends at Sarah Lawrence College, turning a space of learning and growth into the setting for a harrowing tale of manipulation, abuse, and control. This saga unfolds in the early 2010s, when Ray, freshly released from prison, found refuge in his daughter’s on-campus housing. With a blend of intellectual engagement and a pretense of paternal care, he quickly became an influential figure among the students, offering guidance and support. However, this facade belied his true intentions.

As Ray’s influence deepened, the dynamics within the dormitory transformed dramatically. He exploited the vulnerabilities and trust of these young adults, initiating a campaign of psychological manipulation, financial extortion, and sexual abuse. His methods were insidious, employing tactics of interrogation, sleep and food deprivation, and instilling unfounded guilt for supposed wrongs against him. The consequences for the students were devastating, including forced labor, sex trafficking, and financial ruin, with Ray extorting over $1 million from their families and compelling one victim into prostitution, from whom he extracted an astounding $2.5 million.

The eventual unraveling of Ray’s scheme came through the courage of the victims who came forward, leading to his arrest in 2020 and conviction on charges including sex trafficking, extortion, and forced labor. His actions not only shattered the lives of the students involved but also left an indelible mark on the Sarah Lawrence community, prompting introspection and demands for accountability and protection to prevent such manipulation from taking root in educational institutions again​​.

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