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.”
July 30, 2011 Comments Off on Jeffs Case: Polygamist Leader Fires Lawyers,10 yr old Killed For Taking Popsicle
Warren Jeffs Case: Polygamist Leader Fires Lawyers, Represents Himself In Bizarre First Day Of Child Sex Assault Trial 7/29/11
SAN ANGELO, Texas (AP) — Polygamist sect leader Warren Jeffs broke his silence Friday, delivering before jurors a 55-minute sermon defending plural marriage as ordered by God and protected by the U.S. Constitution.
Jeffs, 55, is accused of sexually assaulting two underage girls and could face life in prison if convicted. He fired his high-powered defense team on Thursday and has been representing himself, but he made no opening statement and spent hours sitting alone at the defense table staring into space in silence while prosecutors made their case.
That changed, however, as FBI agent John Broadway testified about seizing eight desktop computers and 120 boxes and large folders of documents from the sect’s West Texas compound in April 2008. Broadway was about to describe a list of names and birthdates for those living at the compound when Jeffs suddenly cried “I object!”
“There is sacred trust given to religious leadership not to be touched by government agencies,” he said.
Jeffs is ecclesiastical head of the Fundamentalist Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints, an offshoot of mainstream Mormonism that believes polygamy brings exaltation in heaven. The church’s 10,000 members see Jeffs as a prophet who speaks for God on Earth….
“We cannot surrender these principles based on the laws of man trying to convince us that our religion is not necessary in practice,” he said, referring to freedom of religion as guaranteed by the First Amendment. Jeffs later added, “this must stop in a land of freedom if all others are to receive a similar guarantee against their freedom of religion being trampled.”
Jeffs said his church has practiced polygamy for five generations and believes it is the will of God, who is a higher power than courts, state legislatures and the U.S. Congress. Jeffs is scheduled to be tried for bigamy in October….
When Jeffs finished, lead prosecutor Eric Nichols rose and said the Supreme Court has found since the 1890s that religious freedom does not extend to polygamy….
Jeffs and 11 other FLDS men were charged with crimes including sexual assault and bigamy.
All seven sect members prosecuted so far have been convicted. They received prison terms of between six and 75 years.
article describes severe and graphic abuse
Ame Deal, Arizona 10-Year-Old, Killed By Family For Taking Popsicle: Police
The family of a 10-year-old found dead in a trunk outside an Arizona home initially claimed the child died while playing hide-and-seek. But investigators now believe Ame Deal suffocated after her family locked her in the box because she took a popsicle from the freezer without permission.
Phoenix police claim Deal’s grandmother, aunt and two cousins regularly subjected the child to horrific treatment, ultimately culminating in her July 12 death.
July 26, 2011 Comments Off on Texas Town Braces For Polygamist Leader Warren Jeffs’ Trial
Texas Town Braces For Polygamist Leader Warren Jeffs’ Trial
(WATCH) WILL WEISSERT 07/25/11 SAN ANGELO, Texas
The first hint of polygamist sect leader Warren Jeffs’ defense strategy came Monday when his attorney said his right to freedom of religion was trampled by Texas prosecutors, who claim he sexually assaulted two underage girls after manipulating them into “spiritual marriages.”
Jury selection began Monday in the case of the 55-year-old ecclesiastical head of the Fundamentalist Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints, an offshoot of mainstream Mormonism that believes polygamy brings exaltation in heaven. The church’s 10,000 members see Jeffs as a prophet who speaks for God on Earth….
Jeffs is accused of sexual assaulting two girls, one younger than 17 and one younger than 14. The charges against him include aggravated sexual assault of a child, which is punishable by up to 99 years to life in prison.
He faces a separate trial for bigamy in October.
The charges stem from an April 2008 police raid on a church compound known as Yearning For Zion outside the town of Eldorado, about 45 miles south of the West Texas oil and gas town of San Angelo. Authorities who believed girls were being forced into polygamous marriages removed more than 400 children living at the compound, and TV images of women wearing frontier-style dresses and 19th century hairdos were shown across the country.
The original call to a Texas domestic abuse hotline that sparked the raid turned out to be a hoax. Most of the children seized from the compound have since been returned to their families, but the evidence collected proved enough to charge Jeffs and 11 other church men with crimes including sexual assault and bigamy.
Seven church members have been convicted and received prison sentences of between 6 and 75 years.
July 29, 2010 Comments Off on Warren Jeffs: Utah court overturns polygamist’s rape conviction
Warren Jeffs: Utah court overturns polygamist’s rape conviction – The Utah Supreme Court ruled Tuesday that the jury in the 2007 rape trial of polygamist leader Warren Jeffs received improper instructions from the trial judge. By Daniel B. Wood, Staff writer / July 27, 2010 The Utah Supreme Court on Tuesday overturned polygamist leader Warren Jeffs’s rape conviction for conducting the marriage of a 14-year-old girl….The Utah justices held that instructions given to the jurors were erroneous and ordered a new trial. Jeffs was originally found guilty of being an accomplice to rape for using his religious influence to coerce a minor into marrying her 19-year-old cousin. The justices said that the jury’s deliberation should have been focused on whether Jeffs’ intent in performing the “spiritual marriage” was for rape to occur, not on whether the action itself led to nonconsensual sex. “In particular, the court held that Mr. Jeffs had to have the intent to aid the rape that was committed,” says Paul Cassell, professor of criminal law at S.J. Quinney College of Law at the University of Utah. “That will be the issue on which the new trial will focus.”
Analysts say the court’s opinion was narrow in the sense that they did not hold that Jeffs is innocent but rather simply that the jury was improperly instructed on the charges. “We regret the effect our opinion might have on the victim of the underlying crime, to whom we do not wish to cause additional pain,” wrote Justice Jill Parrish for the court. “However, we must ensure that the laws are applied evenly and appropriately, in this case as in every case, in order to protect the constitutional principles on which our legal system is based. We must guarantee justice, not just for this defendant, but for all who may be accused of a crime and subjected to the State’s power to deprive them of life, liberty, or property hereafter.”