February 10, 1922
A clue that may mean much in the mystery of the slaying of William Desmond Taylor was uncovered in Detroit today when it was discovered that several well known motion picture people, including one named in the investigation, had secured copies of The Equinox, the official organ of the O. T. O. from the Universal Book Stores in this city. The O. T. O. is said to be a "love cult" believed similar to the one mentioned in dispatches from Los Angeles, whose weird faiths and rituals areset forth in the book, all known copies of which have been seized by the prosecutor following the opening of an investigation into its activities. Frank Murphy, assistant U. S. district attorney, today admitted that orders for the book were among the effects seized in the Federal investigation, and that among these orders was one from a famous motion picture actress, whose name has been mentioned in the Taylor investigation. Murphy said he would forward this information to Los Angeles immediately. Descriptions of the meetings of the love cult in Los Angeles fit in soclosely with instructions given in the Equinox for the O. T. O. gatherings that there is reason to believe the Los Angeles crowd is a branch of the organization. That members of the O. T. O. would not hesitate at anything is indicated both by the governing rule of the order, "Do whatsoever thou wilt," and by a page in which the cult sent greetings and praise to Arthur Waite, the Grand Rapids dentist, executed for murder in New York, following his conviction inconnection with the deaths of his father-in-law and mother-in-law by poison,and his attempts to work a similar death on his wife. This page is in the back of the book and is so worded as to indicate theauthors of the book not only held the slayer in high esteem, but were insympathy with his acts. Photographs of cult members show men in kimonos such as described in the Los Angeles investigation of the California cult, and paragraphs in the bookdeclare it is the duty of members to go to any length to guard the secrets of the organization. The O. T. O. came into public notice when the Universal Book Stores wentinto the hands of a receiver and, at the bankruptcy trial, it was shown thousands of dollars had gone into the publication of The Equinox.