Another tragedy has occurred in California drawing public attention to the activity of small so-called “family cults.”

57-year-old Marcus D. Wesson was the head of what appears to have been a self-styled religious sect.

Wesson ruled like a polygamist patriarch over a small group of women and children. He was a stern authoritarian that lived off the wages of his “wives,” while he stayed home and collected welfare.

A forensic psychologist called Wesson a “charismatic psychopath” and compared him to past cult leaders like David Koresh and Brian Mitchell, the kidnapper of Elizabeth Smart reported the Mercury News.

Nine bodies lay in the wake of Wesson’s wrath. He is now charged with the murder of family members found in a twisted pile of corpses. Wesson was arrested covered in blood.

This gruesome “cult” crime is the worst mass murder in the history of Fresno, California. And some claim that local police could have done more to prevent it reports Associated Press.

Marcus Wesson is hauntingly reminiscent of another California “cult leader” named Winnfred Wright. Wright 46 was sentenced last year to a 16-year prison term for felony child abuse.

Wright’s 19-month old son died from complications connected to rickets, a rare disease contracted when someone is not exposed to the sun.

Like the Wessons the Wright family lived a bizarre life of imposed isolation.

The Wright household also like the Wessons was composed of women living in submission to one man’s rule and idiosyncratic beliefs, which included strict discipline and a strange diet that led to a child’s death.

Wright’s women later said they were “brainwashed,” and a judge agreed allowing one to be “deprogrammed,” but nevertheless later sentencing her to a prison term.

That woman told the court, “Mind control is a reality,” and expressed “great sorrow” about her baby’s death saying she would be “ashamed for the rest of [her] life” reported the Marin Independent Journal.

Marcus Wesson’s sister-in-law described him as “an evil person” that like Winnfred Wright demanded total control over his family of followers reported the Fresno Bee.

However, two of Wesson’s women broke away and took legal action to free their children.

But before police could return the two 7-year-olds to their waiting mothers they were both killed.

It seems that when confronted with losing control of his household kingdom Marcus Wesson decided to murder everyone.

In this sense he appears to be not unlike cult leaders such as David Koresh, Jim Jones and Luc Joret, who when faced with losing personal power also decided to kill their followers rather than surrender control.

But unlike Jones, Koresh and Joret, Marcus Wesson did not take his own life and will face justice.

Wesson’s sister-in-law told reporters that in the end he exercised “the ultimate control” of life or death over his family.

Now it seems the justice system will rightfully ultimately control the rest of Marcus Wesson’s sordid life.