Member of ‘Cult-like’ Church Sentenced, Lawsuit filed in Ooltewah sexual assault claims, Investigating Hope: The complaint, Ex-Scientologists tell disturbing stories about David Miscavige

December 23, 2016 Comments Off on Member of ‘Cult-like’ Church Sentenced, Lawsuit filed in Ooltewah sexual assault claims, Investigating Hope: The complaint, Ex-Scientologists tell disturbing stories about David Miscavige

Member of ‘Cult-like’ Church Sentenced.
Owen Sound | by Kevin Bernard Tuesday, December 20, 2016

No jail time for man convicted of assault in connection with a Chatsworth Area Church.

Two men have now been convicted and sentenced in connection with an investigation into a “cult” like church in Chatsworth.

61 year old Judson King of Oakville plead guilty last Friday (Dec. 16th) to 3 counts of assault and was sentenced to a 12 month conditional sentence (no jail time),  3 years probation, a 10 year weapons ban and he must submit a DNA sample….

King, and his younger brother Fred were arrested in April of 2014 following a 16 month OPP probe into allegations of physical and sexual assault by 7 victims, involving a leader of the Church of Jesus Christ restored.

57 year old Fred King who was known as the “Prophet”, plead guilty earlier this year to 9 counts of assault and was sentenced in September to 18 months in jail, and 2 years probation….


The OPP investigation started, after an Owen Sound woman went public with her allegations of physical and sexual abuse at the hands of “cult” leaders.

Carol Christie wrote her story in a book, “Property: The True Story of a Polygamous Church Wife”,  which was released in mid-2013.

The former church member alleged abuse and polygamy at a compound on Concession 2 south of Owen Sound, near Chatsworth.

She told Bayshore Broadcasting news how she spent nearly 40 years in what essentially was a CULT and she suffered physical and emotional abuse at the hands of the Prophet.
http://www.bayshorebroadcasting.ca/news_item.php?NewsID=89811


Lawsuit filed in Ooltewah sexual assault claims Hamilton County Schools covered up abuse
December 17th, 2016 by Kendi A. Rainwater
A second federal lawsuit filed in connection with the Ooltewah High School rape case claims Hamilton County Schools and some of its employees allowed a culture of bullying and sexual assault to fester at the school, leaving students unprotected.

The lawsuit was filed Friday by the family of an Ooltewah High School basketball player who was sexually assaulted by older players during the team’s trip to Gatlinburg, Tenn., nearly a year ago.

Before the trip, the victim referred to as “Roe” in court papers endured months of harassment and beatings by teammates, which was a ritual on the team, according to the lawsuit.

“OHS has lionized sports and athletes to the point of protecting athletes who engage in misconduct,” the lawsuit states.

For years coaches and administrators ignored the abuse or covered it up, enabling the older players to attack four freshmen with pool cues during the Gatlinburg trip, the lawsuit claims.

One boy was injured so severely he had to undergo emergency surgery. That boy filed a federal lawsuit in September against the school board and former Ooltewah High School employees…..
http://www.timesfreepress.com/news/local/story/2016/dec/17/lawsuit-filed-ooltewah-sexual-assault-claims/403490/


Investigating Hope: The complaint
By Ryan Santistevan | December 1, 2016

Investigating Hope: The Series

This article is one in a series of investigative pieces about a complaint filed with ASU regarding accusations against on-campus ministry Hope Church.

Four categories of conduct violations, six categories of unhealthy practices, eight categories of emotional and psychological abuse, 44 indicators of religious cult­ activity, 14 contributors and 123 pages — this makes up a complaint submitted to ASU detailing the alleged damage inflicted by on-campus ministry Hope Church.

However, before things went sour, each author on the complaint was united by one thing: The welcoming embrace of a church that sought to offer them a home and a family.

The complaint has also been turned into a blog, called Hope Church ASU Cult Investigation, run by a former member of Hope Church.

Multiple former Hope Church members said the organization makes students uncomfortable, creates unhealthy relational dynamics and provides an emotionally and psychologically damaging environment for its members. Members said the church uses “brainwashing” techniques and provides a distorted interpretation of Biblical doctrine to advance the interests of the church.

In the complaint, the term “cult” was used 34 times.

Dr. Felix Salomon of the Phoenix Institute of Psychotherapy said a cult can be defined in many ways, but he defines it as a closed, totalistic subgroup or subculture that demands complete allegiance and the giving up of individuality and autonomy on the account of its members.

Kolton Nelder is one of the 14 former members who wrote a testimony in the collaborative complaint. He and other members said they faced constant pressure to follow the direction of Hope Church leadership without question. Not going with the flow was frowned upon….
http://www.statepress.com/article/2016/12/spcampus-asu-hope-christian-church-religious-cult-controversy-1-complaint


Ex-Scientologists tell disturbing stories about David Miscavige, the ‘pope of Scientology,’ on A&E series December 21, 2016

Actress Leah Remini left the Church of Scientology in 2013 – after 35 years as a devout member – and ever since, she has been on a crusade to expose the controversial organization’s secrets. On “Scientology and the Aftermath,” her new series on A&E, Remini seeks to “delve deep into shocking stories of abuse, heartbreak and harassment experienced by those who have left the church and spoken publicly about their experiences.”

Tuesday night’s episode had a theme: Disturbing stories about the organization’s leader David Miscavige, whom ex-members refer to as “the pope of Scientology,” as well as the “undisputed dictator.”….

Remini also interviewed people about Miscavige’s alleged physical abuse against his staff, including Jeff Hawkins, who was the Scientology “marketing guru” for years. He joined because as a self-proclaimed hippie in the late 1960s, he liked the idea of Scientology’s anti-war stance and spiritual component, particularly the strong belief about the afterlife.

So Hawkins signed a billion year contract and started working closely with Miscavige. Then, he says, Miscavige assaulted him several times. During one incident, he explains, Miscavige once started making fun of him in a room full of people; and when Hawkins asked him not to, Miscavige took that as a sign of disrespect and started hitting him in the face.

Hawkins says that he, as well as everyone in the room at the time, was too afraid to fight back. Initially, he thought the bad times would pass; but when he realized Miscavige would be running Scientology for a very long time, he left the church.

In response, the church disputes many of Hawkins’s statements and says he is an “obsessed anti-Scientologist” who was expelled for “unsavory personal conduct,” and has a long record of malfeasance, and that he fabricated stories about violence from a staff member….
http://www.chicagotribune.com/entertainment/tv/ct-scientology-david-miscavige-pope-of-scientology-20161221-story.html


Child and Ritual Abuse Research  https://ritualabuse.us

Neil Brick : S.M.A.R.T.’s Ritual Abuse Pages
https://ritualabuse.us/smart/neil-brick/

Neil Brick (@Neil_Brick) · Twitter
https://twitter.com/Neil_Brick

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Massive European Online Child Abuse Network Exposed, Bachelor star: ‘Kiwi dad was cult leader’

August 26, 2016 Comments Off on Massive European Online Child Abuse Network Exposed, Bachelor star: ‘Kiwi dad was cult leader’

Massive European Online Child Abuse Network Exposed
25 August 2016

The investigation uncovered how well-known online apps such as Skype and chat and live stream sites allowed the selling of child pornography.

A major operation by the European Police Office into an online network sexually exploiting children has led to the arrests of 75 people and 207 criminal cases across Europe, Europol officials said Tuesday.

“Operation Daylight” was first launched in 2015 after Europol received “intelligence packages” from police in Switzerland about network of online child abuse images.

The investigation uncovered how well-known online apps such as Skype and chat and live stream sites allowed the selling of child pornography. Offenders often used sophisticated encryption methods to hide their activities on the so called “darknet,” a notorious online network where illegal activities commonly take place.

Online currencies such as BitCoin were often used as payment for activities related to online child sexual abuse….

Seventy-five arrests were made in 28 European countries with a number of the suspects already being prosecuted in ongoing investigations. Italian police also revealed that the investigation had led them to the arrests of five people and 16 people being reported to the magistrate….
http://www.telesurtv.net/english/news/Massive-European-Online-Child-Abuse-Network-Exposed-20160825-0001.html


Bachelor star: ‘Kiwi dad was cult leader’
Tuesday, 09 August 2016

Australian Bachelor star Keira Maguire has opened up about her upbringing in a polygamist cult, revealing her biological father, a former police officer from New Zealand, had nine wives and 64 children.


Self-styled spiritual guru Alistah Laishkochav, who told his followers he was Jesus Christ, was the head of a polygamous cult, dailymail.com reported.

Laishkochav, who was born in Auckland, changed his name from Ian Lowe when he moved to Australia from New Zealand in 1969.

At 25, he married his first wife in a Mormon Church, where he was introduced to the concept of polygamy.

The polygamist drew his beliefs from sections of the Jewish, Muslim and Mormon religions.

The former policeman exerted his strict control over the group – of which Keira was a member until the age of 5 – from his Bells Beach compound in Victoria, Australia.

In 2000 he was found guilty of sexually penetrating a child under 10 as well as three counts of attempted penetration of a child and 16 counts of indecent assault.

Laishkochav, who was described by his harem of wives as “the controller”, was sentenced to seven years and six months in jail. He reportedly died years later.

His offences involved four girls aged between seven and 11 and occurred between 1987 and 1991, according to reports.

Maguire would have only been 3 years old at the time.

During his trial, one of the victims told the court she was aged between 7 and 9 when Laishkochav molested her “every other day”.

She also revealed how Laishkochav would threaten her with violence to ensure she stayed silent about the sexual abuse….
http://m.nzherald.co.nz/world/news/article.cfm?c_id=2&objectid=11689782


Ritual abuse exists all over the world. There have been reports, journal articles, web pages and criminal convictions of crimes against children and adults.
http://childabusewiki.org/index.php?title=Ritual_Abuse

Articles and Research about Child and Ritual Abuse
.
https://ritualabuse.us/ritualabuse/

Former members of polygamist sect led by Warren Jeffs reveal secrets in FBI documents

April 6, 2016 Comments Off on Former members of polygamist sect led by Warren Jeffs reveal secrets in FBI documents

Former members of polygamist sect led by Warren Jeffs reveal secrets in FBI documents
April 5, 2016 by CNN

SALT LAKE CITY, Utah — A decade after the arrest of polygamous prophet Warren Jeffs, insiders say his church has literally become a place of feast or famine, of haves and have-nots.

Prison has done little to loosen Jeffs’ hold on many of his followers, even if he is now a convicted child-sex offender serving a life sentence. They still await his revelations and follow his directives, both difficult and bizarre.

But some members are leaving the Fundamentalist Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints — and disobeying their prophet’s longstanding orders to avoid law enforcement and “answer them nothing.”

These FLDS outcasts are talking to the FBI.

They include the former cooks and drivers for the Jeffs family, as well as ex-wives and others who hovered close to the church leaders and their power center. Their words fill hundreds of pages of freshly filed federal court documents, bringing outsiders into the cloistered world of the FLDS like never before.

According to these breakaway members, the FLDS of 2016 has a pecking order: There are the elite church leaders and chosen followers, and everyone else….

The prophet — and there is little doubt Warren Jeffs is still the FLDS prophet — chooses who will be included in the United Order. His brothers, Lyle and Seth, serve as “bishops” and carry out the prophet’s wishes at FLDS compounds along the Utah-Arizona border and in the Black Hills of South Dakota.

The cook, Allene Jeffs Steed, told the FBI last year that while she prepared feasts of lobster and shrimp for the bishop, her own children “lived off toast.” She used duct tape to hold her kids’ shoes together. And hers wasn’t the only FLDS family to go without.

“We were literally starving,” Sheryl Barlow told the FBI in February. She lived in a house with 40 people and said they subsisted on noodles, brown rice, tomato juice and, when they were lucky, bread or a few containers of yogurt….

He was sentenced in August 2011 to life in prison in Texas, convicted of sexually assaulting two girls, 12 and 15, who he considered his “spiritual brides.” An audiotape of the prophet having sex with the 12-year-old was among the most damning evidence at his trial.

With establishment of the United Order, the old Phelps elementary school in Hildale, which closed in 2002 after the prophet ordered all FLDS children home-schooled, was rebranded as Jeffs Academy. Here, followers turned in all their wordly goods for “consecration” in the bishop’s storehouse across the street. They attended “trainings” to learn how to be worthy of eternal salvation and emerged rebaptized as members of the United Order…..
http://pix11.com/2016/04/05/former-members-of-polygamist-sect-led-by-warren-jeffs-reveal-secrets-in-fbi-documents/

Horace Mann alum details shocking sexual abuse of students at elite prep school in new book, Polygamist sect limits sex to ‘seed bearers,’ court document says

October 27, 2015 Comments Off on Horace Mann alum details shocking sexual abuse of students at elite prep school in new book, Polygamist sect limits sex to ‘seed bearers,’ court document says

Horace Mann alum details shocking sexual abuse of students at elite prep school in new book
–  The DA’s report noted there were at least 20 instances of abuse brought to the attention of Horace Mann teachers through the years — and law enforcement was never notified.
–  found as many as 64 students were abused by 22 faculty and staff members

Polygamist sect limits sex to ‘seed bearers,’ court document says
  It’s hard to imagine that a convicted child rapist would be allowed to lead a church from prison, but that’s exactly what’s going on with Warren Jeffs.
– In 2008, authorities raided the church’s sprawling Texas ranch. Police removed more than 460 children from the property, including mothers under 18 years old. Authorities seized and shut down the ranch last year.

Horace Mann alum details shocking sexual abuse of students at elite prep school in new book
BY Sherryl Connelly  NEW YORK DAILY NEWS Saturday, October 24, 2015

Horace Mann, its board populated by international hedge fund managers and real estate titans, settled with abuse victims for between $4 million and $5 million.

Amos Kamil, the Horace Mann alum who first exposed the shocking story of sexually abused students at the elite prep school, knew only about half of what happened.

Three years later, he’s ready to tell the rest of the sordid tale.

Kamil, in “Great is the Truth: Secrecy, Scandal, and the Quest for Justice at the Horace Mann School,” details the long-lingering effects on the victims of predatory staffers.

In the aftermath of the furor ignited by his 2012 article in The New York Times Magazine, many more victims stepped forward.

Only then did the human toll of the abuse become clear — so many lives impaired by the reverberating trauma of drug abuse, aborted careers, suicide.

Kamil, in the book co-written with Sean Elder, charges the Bronx school and its powerful backers adopted a ruthless stance with the sex-abuse survivors.

Protecting Horace Mann’s reputation, and its financial well-being, seemingly took precedence over addressing the victims’ needs, according to Kamil….

The Kamil book says that while the sexual abuse lasted from the 1960s into the 1990s, the school ignored repeated warnings about the sick behavior.

One guidance counselor was said to listen sympathetically before putting his own sexual moves on a student.

Riverdale’s Horace Mann was a small patch of educational paradise in the Bronx, where teachers were expected to fully immerse themselves in their students’ lives.

Boundaries between home and school were intentionally blurred as pupils routinely traveled with their teachers, or spent after-hours and weekends pursuing further enlightenment in their company.

The cult personality was seen as a good thing, demonstrating the powerful influence of a dedicated educator….

The DA’s report noted there were at least 20 instances of abuse brought to the attention of Horace Mann teachers through the years — and law enforcement was never notified.

A recently concluded independent investigation conducted by former Judge Leslie Crocker Snyder — and funded by the alumni association — found that as many as 64 students were abused by 22 faculty and staff members.

The school refused to cooperate in the probe. And when 25 of the survivors repped by media-savvy lawyer Gloria Allred agreed to mediation, Horace Mann’s board played hardball.

New York State’s strict statute of limitations precluded the victims’ getting their day in court, so a financial settlement was the school’s only opportunity to address the wrong.

The settlement arrived at in Brooklyn’s Poly Prep abuse scandal awarded the 12 survivors about $800,000 each. Penn State paid out a total of $59.7 million to the 25 victims in the Jerry Sandusky scandal….
http://www.nydailynews.com/new-york/horace-mann-alum-reveals-abuse-new-book-article-1.2410248

Polygamist sect limits sex to ‘seed bearers,’ court document says
By Thom Patterson, CNN  Thu October 1, 2015

(CNN) It’s hard to imagine that a convicted child rapist would be allowed to lead a church from prison, but that’s exactly what’s going on with Warren Jeffs.

Jeffs leads a polygamist sect known as the Fundamentalist Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. It gained worldwide attention in 2006 when authorities accused Jeffs of sexual offenses against girls he took as wives. At one point Jeffs disappeared, prompting the FBI to put him on its 10 Most Wanted Fugitives list until he was captured.

In 2008, authorities raided the church’s sprawling Texas ranch. Police removed more than 460 children from the property, including mothers under 18 years old. Authorities seized and shut down the ranch last year.

Eventually, Jeffs was convicted in 2011 of “sexual assault” and “aggravated sexual assault” of two girls ages 12 and 15. He was sentenced to life in prison plus 20 years.

The FLDS broke away from the mainstream Mormon church more than a century ago because its members refused to renounce polygamy.

The church allegedly exercises control over the adjacent towns of Colorado City, Arizona, and Hildale, Utah — an area informally known as Short Creek. Other enclaves exist in Mancos, Colorado; Boise City, Oklahoma; Custer County, South Dakota; and a Canadian community known as Bountiful, British Columbia….

First obtained by the Salt Lake Tribune, a child custody petition filed in a St. George, Utah, juvenile court by Lyle Jeffs’ estranged wife Charlene Jeffs describes a group of followers called “seed bearers.” “A seed bearer is an elect man of a worthy bloodline chosen by the Priesthood to impregnate the FLDS woman,” according to Charlene Jeffs’ petition. Under a new doctrine, “FLDS men are no longer permitted to have children with their multiple wives. That privilege belongs to the seed bearer alone,” the petition said. “It is the husband’s responsibility to hold the hands of their wives while the seed bearer ‘spreads his seed.’ In layman terms, the husband is required to sit in the room while the chosen seed bearer, or a couple of them, rape his wife or wives,” according to the document.

Utah juvenile court records are not usually available to the public, so it’s unknown if anyone filed documents disputing any details in Charlene Jeffs’ petition, or the veracity of the petition’s allegations….

Children who were put to work included at least 125 who were younger than 12, at least 50 between ages 12 and 13, and at least 25 between 14 and 15, according to the suit. All performed tasks during school hours such as mowing, pruning and bagging pecans, the suit said….

The number of followers in the secretive church is impossible to know for sure. At its peak many years ago, total FLDS membership may have been as high as 15,000, Brower said, but by his educated guess the number now — in the wake of Jeffs’ imprisonment and the civil lawsuit — is somewhere near 10,000.

Brower said several thousand have left the church or been expelled within the past few years.

FLDS members did not send their children to public schools, which may explain reports of skyrocketing enrollment in public schools. Enrollments have been rising, as more members are expelled or leave the church….
http://www.cnn.com/2015/09/30/us/polygamist-flds-warren-jeffs-update/ Horace Mann alum details shocking sexual abuse of students at elite prep school in new book, Polygamist sect limits sex to ‘seed bearers,’ court document says, FLDS

Horace Mann alum details sexual abuse of students, FLDS Polygamist sect

Horace Mann alum details shocking sexual abuse of students at elite prep school in new book
–  The DA’s report noted there were at least 20 instances of abuse brought to the attention of Horace Mann teachers through the years — and law enforcement was never notified.
–  found as many as 64 students were abused by 22 faculty and staff members

Polygamist sect limits sex to ‘seed bearers,’ court document says
  It’s hard to imagine that a convicted child rapist would be allowed to lead a church from prison, but that’s exactly what’s going on with Warren Jeffs.
– In 2008, authorities raided the church’s sprawling Texas ranch. Police removed more than 460 children from the property, including mothers under 18 years old. Authorities seized and shut down the ranch last year.

Horace Mann alum details shocking sexual abuse of students at elite prep school in new book
BY Sherryl Connelly  NEW YORK DAILY NEWS Saturday, October 24, 2015

Horace Mann, its board populated by international hedge fund managers and real estate titans, settled with abuse victims for between $4 million and $5 million.

Amos Kamil, the Horace Mann alum who first exposed the shocking story of sexually abused students at the elite prep school, knew only about half of what happened.

Three years later, he’s ready to tell the rest of the sordid tale.

Kamil, in “Great is the Truth: Secrecy, Scandal, and the Quest for Justice at the Horace Mann School,” details the long-lingering effects on the victims of predatory staffers.

In the aftermath of the furor ignited by his 2012 article in The New York Times Magazine, many more victims stepped forward.

Only then did the human toll of the abuse become clear — so many lives impaired by the reverberating trauma of drug abuse, aborted careers, suicide.

Kamil, in the book co-written with Sean Elder, charges the Bronx school and its powerful backers adopted a ruthless stance with the sex-abuse survivors.

Protecting Horace Mann’s reputation, and its financial well-being, seemingly took precedence over addressing the victims’ needs, according to Kamil….

The Kamil book says that while the sexual abuse lasted from the 1960s into the 1990s, the school ignored repeated warnings about the sick behavior.

One guidance counselor was said to listen sympathetically before putting his own sexual moves on a student.

Riverdale’s Horace Mann was a small patch of educational paradise in the Bronx, where teachers were expected to fully immerse themselves in their students’ lives.

Boundaries between home and school were intentionally blurred as pupils routinely traveled with their teachers, or spent after-hours and weekends pursuing further enlightenment in their company.

The cult personality was seen as a good thing, demonstrating the powerful influence of a dedicated educator….

The DA’s report noted there were at least 20 instances of abuse brought to the attention of Horace Mann teachers through the years — and law enforcement was never notified.

A recently concluded independent investigation conducted by former Judge Leslie Crocker Snyder — and funded by the alumni association — found that as many as 64 students were abused by 22 faculty and staff members.

The school refused to cooperate in the probe. And when 25 of the survivors repped by media-savvy lawyer Gloria Allred agreed to mediation, Horace Mann’s board played hardball.

New York State’s strict statute of limitations precluded the victims’ getting their day in court, so a financial settlement was the school’s only opportunity to address the wrong.

The settlement arrived at in Brooklyn’s Poly Prep abuse scandal awarded the 12 survivors about $800,000 each. Penn State paid out a total of $59.7 million to the 25 victims in the Jerry Sandusky scandal….
http://www.nydailynews.com/new-york/horace-mann-alum-reveals-abuse-new-book-article-1.2410248

Polygamist sect limits sex to ‘seed bearers,’ court document says
By Thom Patterson, CNN  Thu October 1, 2015

(CNN) It’s hard to imagine that a convicted child rapist would be allowed to lead a church from prison, but that’s exactly what’s going on with Warren Jeffs.

Jeffs leads a polygamist sect known as the Fundamentalist Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. It gained worldwide attention in 2006 when authorities accused Jeffs of sexual offenses against girls he took as wives. At one point Jeffs disappeared, prompting the FBI to put him on its 10 Most Wanted Fugitives list until he was captured.

In 2008, authorities raided the church’s sprawling Texas ranch. Police removed more than 460 children from the property, including mothers under 18 years old. Authorities seized and shut down the ranch last year.

Eventually, Jeffs was convicted in 2011 of “sexual assault” and “aggravated sexual assault” of two girls ages 12 and 15. He was sentenced to life in prison plus 20 years.

The FLDS broke away from the mainstream Mormon church more than a century ago because its members refused to renounce polygamy.

The church allegedly exercises control over the adjacent towns of Colorado City, Arizona, and Hildale, Utah — an area informally known as Short Creek. Other enclaves exist in Mancos, Colorado; Boise City, Oklahoma; Custer County, South Dakota; and a Canadian community known as Bountiful, British Columbia….

First obtained by the Salt Lake Tribune, a child custody petition filed in a St. George, Utah, juvenile court by Lyle Jeffs’ estranged wife Charlene Jeffs describes a group of followers called “seed bearers.” “A seed bearer is an elect man of a worthy bloodline chosen by the Priesthood to impregnate the FLDS woman,” according to Charlene Jeffs’ petition. Under a new doctrine, “FLDS men are no longer permitted to have children with their multiple wives. That privilege belongs to the seed bearer alone,” the petition said. “It is the husband’s responsibility to hold the hands of their wives while the seed bearer ‘spreads his seed.’ In layman terms, the husband is required to sit in the room while the chosen seed bearer, or a couple of them, rape his wife or wives,” according to the document.

Utah juvenile court records are not usually available to the public, so it’s unknown if anyone filed documents disputing any details in Charlene Jeffs’ petition, or the veracity of the petition’s allegations….

Children who were put to work included at least 125 who were younger than 12, at least 50 between ages 12 and 13, and at least 25 between 14 and 15, according to the suit. All performed tasks during school hours such as mowing, pruning and bagging pecans, the suit said….

The number of followers in the secretive church is impossible to know for sure. At its peak many years ago, total FLDS membership may have been as high as 15,000, Brower said, but by his educated guess the number now — in the wake of Jeffs’ imprisonment and the civil lawsuit — is somewhere near 10,000.

Brower said several thousand have left the church or been expelled within the past few years.

FLDS members did not send their children to public schools, which may explain reports of skyrocketing enrollment in public schools. Enrollments have been rising, as more members are expelled or leave the church….
http://www.cnn.com/2015/09/30/us/polygamist-flds-warren-jeffs-update/

A Utah Law Prohibiting Polygamy Is Weakened

December 15, 2013 Comments Off on A Utah Law Prohibiting Polygamy Is Weakened

A Utah Law Prohibiting Polygamy Is Weakened
By JOHN SCHWARTZ
Published: December 14, 2013

A federal judge has struck down parts of Utah’s anti-polygamy law as unconstitutional in a case brought by a polygamous star of a reality television series. Months after the Supreme Court bolstered rights of same-sex couples, the Utah case could open a new frontier in the nation’s recognition of once-prohibited relationships.

Judge Clark Waddoups of United States District Court in Utah ruled late Friday that part of the state’s law prohibiting “cohabitation” — the language used in the law to restrict polygamous relationships — violates the First Amendment guarantee of free exercise of religion, as well as constitutional due process. He left standing the state’s ability to prohibit multiple marriages “in the literal sense” of having two or more valid marriage licenses.

Judge Waddoups, who was appointed by President George W. Bush, wrote a 91-page decision that reflects — and reflects upon — the nation’s changing attitude toward government regulation of personal affairs and unpopular groups. The Supreme Court supported the power of states to restrict polygamy in an 1879 decision, Reynolds v. United States.

Judge Waddoups made clear that the Brown case was not an easy one for him, writing, “The proper outcome of this issue has weighed heavily on the court for many months.” He noted the shifts in the way the Constitution has been interpreted over the past century to increase protection for groups and individuals spurned by the majority….
http://www.nytimes.com/2013/12/15/us/a-utah-law-prohibiting-polygamy-is-weakened.html

Is Sister Wives Hiding The Disturbing Truth About Polygamy?

September 9, 2011 Comments Off on Is Sister Wives Hiding The Disturbing Truth About Polygamy?

Is ‘Sister Wives’ Hiding The Disturbing Truth About Polygamy?
9/7/11 – Sam Brower

Despite the recent well-publicized and deeply disturbing child molestation trial of self-proclaimed polygamist prophet Warren Jeffs, TV reality show polygamist Kody Brown and his trendy wives and family seem to be everywhere these days. Their TV show, “Sister Wives,” is a big hit….

For more than seven years, as a private investigator I have been investigating and researching similar polygamous societies, but mainly the Fundamentalist Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints (FLDS) and its outlaw prophet, Warren Jeffs, who is now serving a sentence of life plus twenty years in a Texas prison….

I can only hope and pray that the depravity of child abuse and the degradation of women and children to the status of chattel will never be thought of in such a callous manner as simply- unconventional yet relatable.

In my world, unconventional doesn’t mean four mommies showing up for back-to-school night; the FLDS do not send their kids to public schools. If they’re lucky, the children may receive the equivalent of an eighth grade education before being sent out to work on a construction job, or to become mothers themselves.

Admittance into the bride pool can begin within a few weeks after a child’s twelfth birthday. “Mother” is the person who raises and nurtures you as a “daughter in Zion” over the course of those short formative years. She then takes you by the hand and places it in the hand of a man decades older, in an arranged “spiritual sexual union,” alongside that man’s several or many other “sister wives.”

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/sam-brower/sister-wives-_b_952693.html

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