Sunday, December 23, 2007

Viking Behind Bars

SALT LAKE CITY — An inmate is suing the Utah Department of Corrections for denying him his right to practice an ancient Nordic religion while behind bars.

Michael Polk is serving time for aggravated assault and robbery. He filed a lawsuit against corrections officials in federal court, accusing them of denying him religious items that he says are necessary to practice the Asatru religion.

The religion worships ancient Nordic gods like Odin, Thor, Tyr and Heimdal.

In the lawsuit, Polk says he has been a member of the Asatru faith since 2005, and in order to properly practice it he needs items including: a Thor's Hammer, a prayer cloth, a Mead Horn used for drinking Wassail, a drum made of wood and boar skin, a rune staff and a sword.

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