Hearing Wednesday, Polygamists Challenge Raid

By: Associated Press
By: Associated Press

A court hearing is scheduled in Texas Wednesday on a challenge by leaders of a polygamist sect to a raid by law officers. They say the search warrant was too broad and not supported by evidence. State officials have now removed 416 children from the compound citing a complaint of abuse by a pregnant 16-year-old.

Child welfare officials in Texas allege that the polygamist compound was rife with sexual abuse. Court documents also charge that girls were spiritually married to much older men as soon as they reached puberty.

The investigation of the compound, opertaded by the Fundamentalist Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints, started after hushed phone calls from a 16-year-old girl who said her 50-year-old husband beat and raped her. She has not yet been located.

Documents also indicate a number of teen girls at the 1,700-acre compound were pregnant.

(Copyright 2008 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)


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  • by UCC-DueProcess Location: Denton Texas on Apr 17, 2008 at 08:50 AM
    The authorities have overstepped their bounds and are out of control. Get the ones that break the law but not at the expense of violating the other parents' rights. This sect was able to exist because of mainstream prejudices against different lifestyles. I do not condone underage sex or abuse, but be careful what you let the State call abuse. The State isn't innocent of abuse either. These children should not be taken from their parents until each parent is shown to be abusing that individual child. Never give the State blanket power and don't let the State overwhelm all of you. Put your personal feelings and your personal beliefs aside, focus on how you would want you and your child treated. Remember this was a group, and group behaviors are not necessarily individual behaviors. I say have helpers move onto the compound with the mothers and teach them acceptable ways that will protect the children, without infiltrating them with your personal religious influences.
  • by Danny Haszard on Apr 10, 2008 at 01:36 PM
    The Jehovah's Witnesses have settled lawsuits alleging church policies protected pedophile men who sexually abused children for many years. Frederick McLean is one of the most-wanted fugitives in the United States
  • by Cynical Location: CS on Apr 9, 2008 at 03:01 PM
    The Catholic Church is not a parent nor does it advocate these types of marriages. Your comment is much like comparing apples and oranges
  • by ML Location: CS on Apr 9, 2008 at 01:27 PM
    Jay G??...there aren't enough letters in the word 'Clueless' to truly describe your current condition. I believe the point being made by to other, more coherent posters, is that hiding behind anything, especially religion, is no excuse for immoral and illegal behaviour and should not be tolerated. The laws are clear on this matter and apply to everyone who lives in this country...regardless of what your sect leader might say.
  • by Emily Location: Pa on Apr 9, 2008 at 01:00 PM
    That's disgusting. What kind of sick religion thinks that's okay to do. Why would you let your daughter get beat and raped? That's horrible, those kids are going to have some major issues if this is what they are raised to believe is right!
  • by Travis Location: CS on Apr 9, 2008 at 10:43 AM
    These people are sick in the head! A 16yr old girl married to a 50yr old man. They need to take every child from that place.
  • by db Location: Colorado Springs on Apr 9, 2008 at 10:03 AM
    Anyone who would allow there 15 year old daughter to be forced into marriage with a 50 year old is sick and has no right being a parent. Anyone involved in this practice should be locked up for a long time. Putting a stop to child rape is not religious persecution.
  • by Jay G Location: USA on Apr 9, 2008 at 07:24 AM
    Would Texas raid the Catholic Church and take away all Catholic children if a 16 year old reported sexual abuse?
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