Raid aftermath: Cell phones are confiscated

Texas: Order affects FLDS women, kids

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  • Eyewittnessrocks!!
    May 7, 2008 9:13 p.m.

    People need to be mor carful

    April 17, 2008 3:23 p.m.


    April 17, 2008 3:26 p.m.


  • Jay
    April 17, 2008 4:11 a.m.

    I am stunned that people are so concerned with the fact that the group on the ranch should sue Texas. Havent they already had enough money from the USA by "bleeding the beast". Why are people defending people that activley want to bring down a system i have read alot on this over the past few weeks. America has so much good, but this thinking of "bleeding the beast" and having sex with teeneages is not now nor will ever be right. Dont let these things happen in your great country "14 year old girls should be worried about music and boys and enjoying their lives not if they are going to be beaten by their 50 year old husbands". Everyone has a right to practise religion but not like this. Your soldiers are fighting in Afghanistan in part to fight for freedom. What freedom do the women and children of the ranch have???

  • To: Kyle @8:31
    April 16, 2008 2:47 p.m.

    All of the people in "Lehi 5th ward" do not live on the same peice of property. They do not share houses. They would not play the "shell game" with their children trying to hide them from people who want to ask them how old they are and who their bio parents really are. They would not lie (I am guessing) and claim the children being abused were their's when they were not.

    To those insisting on due process...
    The men were not arrested BECAUSE of due process.
    The children are in PROTECTIVE custody.

    Would any of you really want to wait to "help" until a child dies because she was "married" too young?

  • Kyle
    April 15, 2008 8:31 p.m.

    Well said Blaine.
    I hear many posts saying "Where are the guilty men?". Why would Texas DFS let themselves be bothered with the hassle of building an actual case based on real evidence. Even if there are prosecutable cases of child brides in Texas (which seems doubtful at this point) this whole thing is a joke. Do you think the good people of Utah would understand the legality's of this case a little bit better if all the kids in the Lehi 5th ward were rounded up because of a phone call from one unidentified girl in the ward claiming she was raped. Our objection ought to have nothing to do with our opinions of polygamy or child abuse. United we must stand up and demand that Texas officials return to the rule of law, and that charges be brought against each family or insist their children be returned to them. I don't want my family to suffer for the behavior of my neighbor and it is absurd that we are even debating whether these people should be made to suffer for the transgressions of their neghbors.

  • I am LDS
    April 15, 2008 2:59 p.m.

    I am LDS and I would take in these children ( I think I would qualify for 4+ children according to space and time availiable) or as many as I am allowed. I am sure the children are frightened. In my home I would allow them time to adjust to "normal" society. They could dress just as they do now until they decide they want change.
    In my home polygamy is NOT taught and I will never willingly be a polygamist so the children would be safe in our home.

  • LizM in Va.
    April 15, 2008 7:43 a.m.

    First of all, anyone who prays, should be praying that this all gets resolved and the whole truth is exposed. I am sure that there is some abuse in some families, just like ALL people across the world. The only law that the FLDS are breaking is that they are marring more than one wife. Underage people are allowed to marry with consent of a parent. It doesn't mean that all the parents who agree to this are in my moral eyes doing the right thing, but that is their right. Plenty of underage people are married that are NOT FLDS.
    As far as how this has been handled by the police and CPS, they should have been upfront and honest with everyone. If the cps would have handled this like it was anyone else, they would have found out that most of the rumors were indeed just rumors. Then they would have handled those that needed to be removed from a terrible situation. One family at a time.

  • Blemish on Society
    April 14, 2008 11:39 p.m.

    Kudos to the Deseret News for covering this story in detail. I'm one who thinks that polygamy is wrong and, because it's illegal, laws against it should be enforced. Not only should abuse against children be prosecuted but also forcing children to live in a polygamous family or compound should be considered child abuse.

  • Eye wittness
    April 14, 2008 11:02 p.m.

    Hey people, I just happened to be in on this thing. I witnessed what still seems like a nightmare. This thing is just plain wrong and stupid. I am very ashamed I ever took part in such a fiasco, and I am can say for many other who have been brought in from all over the state of Texas, by the way I am not to proud to be a texan anymore, but I can say that the CPS has got way more controll over this thing than they should. As I saw those women and children huging there Fathers and Husbands I saw a relationship of pure virtue. If there was abuse than why would these children love there fathers like they do. We, as people have a right to our opinon, but those people should be left alone and given the rights they deserve. How would you feel if everything you have hoped, fought, swet, bled, yearned, and prayed for was splattered to piecess right before your very eys at gunpoint. We cannot just sit by and watch this thing go on, we have got to stand up and fight. THESE PEOPLE AR INOCENT

  • Not in my house
    April 14, 2008 10:30 p.m.

    To the LDS mom who would not take in these children, I am not surprised at your attitude. Perhaps you should read your Book of Mormon. Polygamy was something Mormons practiced for at least 40 yrs. To say you do not want your children tainted by the FLDS children is to be a hypocrit. Where is the compassion. I agree, LDS families should be fostering those Texas kids. Your families are the closest to their own beliefs. I am not surprised by your snobiness, it is exactly why I left the church.

  • Matt in Tucson
    April 14, 2008 10:23 p.m.

    I will condemn any Gestapo action by any government against any minority religion. But, I will especially condemn it when it happens on US soil. It is high time that the Baptist-led Texas government take a chill pill.

  • awesomeron
    April 14, 2008 9:43 p.m.

    To: Moms Kicked Out. The so called Moms are under the control of the Males. They did not protect their Daughters. They can't just arrest the Males, they have to have proof they did something. Which means people are going to half to talk if not by talking then by exam. A lot of things are going to have to be looked into. Discoveries made and actions taken. Wrongs righted and People put in Jail. Services given, Truth told, Books Written and Movies made. Perhaps lives where saved. Perhaps at some point in the future lives can be led that are mostly normal.

  • Gena
    April 14, 2008 9:42 p.m.

    NOBODY on this thread has supported the sexual abuse of minors. Without exception, it has been stated that if sexual abuse or other child abuse has occurred, it should be prosecuted, so quit setting up that straw man.

    What has been stated is that there is not adequate proof that all of these children have been abused, that probable cause has not been established or proven, that the FLDS people are being tried by rumor and innuendo in the media in stories worthy of the National Enquirer, and that the victims are being punished rather than the supposed perpetrators. Please quit confusing a concern for protection of fundamental constitutional rights with support for child abuse. Everyone on this thread wants the children to be safe - they disagree that this is the way to go about achieving that goal.

  • Ronald A. Young
    April 14, 2008 9:20 p.m.

    I am not all that pleased with the way the Texas Police went in, but I am so glad that they did. It seemed to be organized and well planned. Not a Shot was fired and No One was killed. I know that the Victims will not think that they where Rescued but they where. Those that think that Texas CPS should be sued are wrong. Sued for what?

    These girls where being Raped and given into Marriage (that is of question as the marriages are not legal) It is against State and Federal law to have more then 1 wife, spiritual or not. The Law Trumps Religion, Declaration 1 and 3 statements by Wilford Woodruff. Also Article of Faith #12.

    These males where so called Marrying and then Raping girls as young as 13 or 14. These girls lost both their Virtue and their Childhood. The idea being not to love and cherish and care for them. But to impregnate them by force. This was not Marital Sex this was Rape sometimes with Violence. The Mothers sometimes took part or at least did nothing. As long as he is raping her, he is not raping me.

  • California
    April 14, 2008 9:08 p.m.

    I say have the baby daddies come claim their kids. Then have the welfare dept standing by to collect child support. These people have perverted the LDS religion. Why you people in Utah would support that perversion is beyond me.

  • California
    April 14, 2008 9:05 p.m.

    I just have to weigh in on this. I was born in SLC but left Utah as a baby. I have been LDS but not now. I find it really sad that anyone would find it ok for a 16 yr old girl to have 4 kids??? They are saying there are 13, 14, 15 yr old pregnant girls. Believe me when I say these girls did not get pregnant from a teenage boy. They were sexually assaulted in the "temple" in a bed specifically there for the "wedding night" when these perverts "marry" these children. How disgusting that you all think this is anything less than sexual abuse of children! Are you really that ignorant? Joseph Smith did the same thing ( child brides) so maybe your attorney general and some of the posters here are just reaching back to your "roots" in support of this behavior. I say good for Texas for protecting these children.

  • Due Process?
    April 14, 2008 8:13 p.m.

    It seems many of the people making comments here want to simply ignore what our constitution requires because they are disgusted by the FLDS practice of polygamy and underage marriage. While Americans are right be outraged and angry about any sexual or physical abuse of children, they should still be extremely careful that legal protections are equally applied. "Equal justice under the law" is a sacred and fundamental ideal that underpins all of our freedoms. If we start to become selective about this group or that situation, we are, as a nation, stepping onto a very slippery slope.

    Should we look forward to the day when the government is so zealous about child sex abuse that they go into the inner city and pull all the children in a six block area because some are deemed "at risk" because of one phone call? Wholesale incarceration of almost an entire community is an atrocity and will in the long run be repudiated by the American people. At least I hope it will.

    Will we extend constitutional protections to common murderers but not to an unpopular religious sect? I always thought the law applied to individuals, not communities.

  • Moms kicked out
    April 14, 2008 8:04 p.m.

    Someone please, stop this insanity. These are the MOM's. At least, if you think you have a 'case', arrest the MEN.

    I hope the state of texas has to seriously raise taxes, in order to pay for this one.

  • WetbackinTexas
    April 14, 2008 7:09 p.m.

    I think that they are trying to do what is right for these people who are already emotionally and maybe physically scarred. I think that this sect should have thought and discovered that Texas law is different than that of other states. You think the national government or anyone has the power to sue a Republic which is Texas; Texas could survive on its own without the rest of the U.S. I am a believer in Jesus Christ and the Father God, who I find everything. its not a question on religion but in Texas we believe in taking care of business when people report those kinds of things to our law enforcement. I pray for the people of the world to find salvation in what is right. thats all I have to say.

  • Matt Connelly
    April 14, 2008 6:59 p.m.

    I'm no lawyer, but unless the media is purposefully excluding information there seems to be plenty of civil rights violations going in this Texas polygamists fiasco. The police ought to be ashamed of the way this is being handled. These people are humans, not animals. Besides, they have what is known in the constitution as civil rights. Please start obeying the law in the way you are handling these so-called dangerous people. Do the misdeeds of a few justify the abuse of an entire people. I think not.

  • What?
    April 14, 2008 6:56 p.m.

    Try not to forget about all the sex abuse going on at that ranch. The media can persuade our thoughts in a different direction on any given day.
    The phones should have been taken on the day they removed the children. If a family in you neighborhood was suspected of child abuse, the child would be removed from the home with no contact by the family whatsoever, until it was determined it was ok. These families are lucky that their moms have been allowed to stay with them.

  • Hung by the Thread
    April 14, 2008 6:20 p.m.

    Well, I don't believe you take a village to find one person (who Texas and Utah and Colorado officials knew was living in Utah and residing in Utah and Is Still residing in Utah after his interview)

    So, .. all of you Officials who claim to be aiding the Texas Rangers.... Knew full well (the falsified phone call... uhh.. to a ??? Domestic Violence Shelter??? yeah, like one of the plygs would call their before calling 911, as IF they would even have a DM Shelter phone number with them.

    I hope there are MANY groups that step up and file against the State of Texas for violating religious Constitutionaly protected status.

    You wanna see the Constitution hang by a Thread, and, according to the verbatim of Joseph Smith... IF the Constitution is to be saved at all, it Will be by the Elders of this Church.

  • Extreme or Necessary?
    April 14, 2008 6:18 p.m.

    Well, if you people are offended by the governments abuse you do have options. You have the right to bear arms still, right? You also have the right to gather in protest right?
    Has the government so frightend you that this method seems extreme?
    It is the government who has become extreme and they need to be put in check.

    All that is necessary for the triumph of evil is that good men do nothing

    Step up good men or just keep talking...

  • SueM
    April 14, 2008 5:23 p.m.

    Seems that many of you just dont get it..
    These woman are not HELD against there will
    they can leave anytime they wish, they just cannot return.. these children are in protective custody they are not under arrest.. The State could have denied these mothers to come onlng for this ride
    but allowed them to accompnay their children..
    Those chose to go with them now they are complaining they are victims GIVE ME A BREAK
    If the judge finds that there is ground to keep these children they the judge wil act according to LAW.. If they dont have grounds the children will be returned and the state will suffer whatever becomes of them.. I dont care about multiple marriages.. I do however care about young girls possibly being forced into marriage and having children so very young and god help that state if they didnt investigate it.. you all would be screaming at the tops of your lungs if they had proof and did nothing.. Let Texas face what it will
    and just pray that these children are cared for and treated properly

  • Freddy
    April 14, 2008 5:14 p.m.

    **The women in "custody" by Texas authorities are free to leave the shelters at any time. This has been made quite clear as well. So many ignorant posters who claim to love freedom have this situation backwards.**

    Why would a woman want to leave her toddler baby behind and flee custody?

  • wrz
    April 14, 2008 5:17 p.m.

    >>What you don't hear is

    "I was married at 15 . . . my husband was 34 years older than me . . . I've been pregnant ever since . . . I lived under a messed up, weirdo cult leader . . . my kids grow up by looking the other way when my husband beats me . . ."

  • Tammy
    April 14, 2008 5:15 p.m.

    sex with a little kid is mean and hateful. It warps the minds of innocent children. To have sex with an old man must be a total horrible nightmare. I won't go into detail about it on here.. SAVE THE CHILDREN!

  • ROCK
    April 14, 2008 5:07 p.m.

    Im neither LDS nor FLDS, and frankly do not support the opinions of either sect.

    In a Republic of laws, the state cannot deprive innocent citizens of liberty, property, or contact with family (or lawyers - their real fear).

    Of course carnal knowledge is a crime - no defense offered for unspeakable offenses - but if thats the reason for the invasion, why didn't they arrest the MALES??

    Have these women and children been "arrested"? If not, why the removal? If so, what's the charge - generally Law Enforcement has 48 hours to charge or release...and if charged, what's the bail? Cant anyone in Texas who suffered a public education still spell Habeas Corpus?

    C'mon, CPS...what are you hiding?

    C'mon, many lies and distortions are you covering for?

    The real issue here is that the state and judiciary are corrupt. Somebody has it in for these people and this was the excuse to destroy them all for being different.

    I pray that the news is right, that the tip was a hoax, and that the resulting lawsuit bankrupts Texas. They deserve it.

    Because it was never about the alleged crime - its obviously about the ability to destroy.

  • Samuel
    April 14, 2008 4:57 p.m.

    What's with all the feel sorry for the polygamists on here? And the pictures on DN. Come on folks! This abuse has been going on for decades! i KNOW BECAUSE i am a polygamy escapee. You LDS knuckle cases need to learn more what's really going on inside these sick abusive communes before you think to rescue. Evil is evil.

  • Too "Lynn @ 3:51"
    April 14, 2008 4:51 p.m.

    What kids did they find hidden in tunnels and Temples?

    News reports state they found no one in the Temple when they broke in.

    I've heard the rumors about hiding kids in tunnels, but I've never heard a report in this case that they found these kids hiding in tunnels.

    This is how these rumors get started. All it takes is one commenter like Lynn and off we go with another whole set of un-truths that many people will now consider to be documented facts (becasue they saw them in writing in the DMN comments).

  • Thomas
    April 14, 2008 4:47 p.m.

    I say we identify each and every religious or ethnic group that has a higher-than-average incidence of adults having sex with minors, and make all their kids wards of the state.

    Granted, there'd be large parts of California virtually depopulated of everyone under 18, but nothing ought to stand in the way of keeping the children safe.

  • What's next
    April 14, 2008 4:42 p.m.

    I've been through it; I can give you a few hints.

    For each child, there will be a hearing in juvenile court. State appointed "attorney" for the child; none for the parents because "it's not about them". (It still curdles my blood...)

    The court commissioner or judge will explain to the parents, "This child needs to be protected. I have adoption papers here, ready to sign, which will mean you will never see your child again. I am ready to do so if you will not cooperate. Now tell me - did you abuse this child? Remember, only answering 'yes' will indicate your willingness to cooperate."

    Think about it. How would you answer?

    And remember this when we start hearing the news about how many confessions there have been...

  • Doug S
    April 14, 2008 4:26 p.m.

    Technically, Doug, it's their fourth, fifth, and sixth amendment rights. But who's counting?

  • meemaw12
    April 14, 2008 4:18 p.m.

    I live near San Angelo and am very aware of the living arrangements at Fort Concho. They are clean, neat and spacious barracks. The women and children that are housed there are being treated with respect. They are receiving free medical care. They are being provided free food. The whole problem is that these very women are just as guilty as the men in this cult. They evidently believe that it is ok to take advantage of this underage children as they have been raised to believe this. So these women are making up any stories that they can to get the children and them carried back to their abusers.

  • Lawyer is spot on
    April 14, 2008 4:18 p.m.

    What you are seeing is damage control by an agency that has grossly overstepped its bounds and whose employees are beginning to realize they screwed up, big time.

    The Texas authorities were hoping that lurid accusations of sexual abuse -- combined with the public's natural antipathy towards polygamists and religious fanatics -- would distract the media and the public long enough for them to justify their case.

    Now they're stuck with a massive PR fiasco-in-the-making and starting to panic.

    I predict this will not end well. Not quite as bad as the last time Texas tried to intimidate a weird religious cult (Waco), but they'll still end up with a black eye.

  • Anonymous
    April 14, 2008 4:15 p.m.

    It never ceases to amaze me how BIASED this paper really and truely is. I have posted several valid posts in support of Texas, and only 3 out of the 20 for the last five days have been posted. Geeeee I wonder which way this paper is swinging!

  • wrz
    April 14, 2008 4:16 p.m.

    "Let me get this straight. They can't identify the accuser or the perp. Based on that non-information, from a non-accuser, Texas storms the compound,
    and relocates all the women and children, separating the families and not allowing some women to have any contact with their own children. They then smash through the prayer circle to crash their sacred site and tantalize us with suggestions of ritual sex. Then, to make sure there's no contact with the outside (for their own protection, of course), they confiscate all the phones of the non-accused. Meantime, the unidentified dirty old men disappear into the Texas badlands or back to polygamy-friendly Utah and Arizona. This gets worse every day. I'm waiting for the report that it may have been a prank call and Texas has no case -- and has to pay millions in reparations." - Artirome

    You ain't seen nothing yet. Boggs, governor of the state of Missouri ordered the Mormons exterminated.

  • Freddy
    April 14, 2008 3:59 p.m.

    **This isn't about religion, this is about having sex with children, it is illegal.** Dave

    It's now about incarcerating 400 plus innocent children and their moms and cutting off their first amendment rights.

  • Lynn
    April 14, 2008 3:51 p.m.

    They didn't keep the kids in the compound due to the fact it took 3 days to track all the kids down that were being hidden by the women, and men! At least thery are now all in plain view and not being hidden in temples, or tunnels!

  • wrz
    April 14, 2008 3:57 p.m.

    >>Multiply that by 416 + 137, you've got yourself a rather large bill, Texas.

  • Wolf
    April 14, 2008 3:46 p.m.

    They should do DNA tests on those people: they are probably all related. The whole thing is creepy, and I feel so sorry for the children.

  • wrz
    April 14, 2008 3:44 p.m.

    >>What's next? It only gets worse from here...but look at the bright least they did not have tanks driven into their homes nor were they burned to death.

  • jr
    April 14, 2008 3:43 p.m.

    It is sad to me the people who are so quick to "defend" this compound. I happen to live in Texas and I am hearing my fair share of news about the situation. We are not as backwards as you people make us out to be. In fact, from what I have read above I would say we are more progressive than you because we will actually stand up for our children and pull them out of a situation in which they are absolutely helpless in. You are right when you say that the mothers could have called on their cell phones. However, you have to remember they are the other parent who has also turned a blind eye to the abuse for years upon years...and even encountered it upon herself. Therefore, why would we expect any different from her? Wake up people! I agree in the fact that if the church and the Deseret news has nothing to do with this then why are they continually covering this awful story. Give these children some peace and if Texas truly did do something wrong we will all find out soon enough.

  • observer
    April 14, 2008 3:38 p.m.

    I personally am in favor of taking away EVERBODY'S cell phone. Maybe then, we could have a little more civility in public places and people would pay more attention to their driving.

  • Douglas
    April 14, 2008 3:26 p.m.

    To Date: 1 Alleged child rapist, apparently not in the state at time crime alleged. 1 Victim, absent from scene. Hundreds of witnesses to alleged crime, but no identification of victim after week of interrogations, no ID on perpetrator. 416 children removed based upon alleged culture of religion, but no specific acts of neglect against specific children (that can be found). State seeks Court to rule without case by case hearing to determine if particular parent is unfit, proving the state's own view that their own Citizens have NO individual rights or freedoms.
    The presiding Judge took an oath to defend the Texas and U.S. Constitutions, and such an oath requires defense even though while defending those rights serious injury to others can occur. We all hear of the criminal free on bond who commits some new violent crime. Simple solution, just ignore the constitutional presumption of innocence. Jail from arrest until acquittal, and final appeal. Makes sense, doesn't it. And its working in Texas right now.

  • Anonymous
    April 14, 2008 3:28 p.m.

    Kudos to Texas.

  • Lawyer at a distance
    April 14, 2008 3:21 p.m.

    Actually, I'm a bit struck by the overkill involved here, even assuming the allegations are correct. First, there is no allegation that infants, boys, or pre-pubescent girls are being abused or married off before legal age, but that post-pubescent girls below the legal age of consent are being unscrupulously (and possibly unwillingly) turned into teenage brides and mothers. So far I haven't heard any allegation of danger with regard to anyone else under the (bizarre to me) beliefs of the FLDS, and I have seen nothing to indicate that any other child or teenager is in any danger. So, why round up all of the children, when only a subset is at risk? Second, why hold all of them after they've had a physical exam and questioned them to make sure no one is physically or sexually abused? I'm beginning to suspect a desperate need on the part of the powers that be to fish up something to justify what's happened so far, especially when they have seemingly been unable to locate the original whistle blower.

  • Formerfalcon
    April 14, 2008 3:07 p.m.

    If the members of the FLDS were black the ACLU and Jessie Jackson would have been there on the first day.

    It makes me wonder if the "anonymous caller" was the author of the book that left the FLDS or someone else that had left that wanted to cause them problems. She would have had knowledge.

    The pictures shown don't tell me that these people were locked in a compound, they lived there. I see no problem with that. The FLDS in Utah and Arizona don't live in compounds either - they live in communities.

    It amazes me how bitter people that post are - and they know all the answers to all the world's problems. What has happened to knowing all the information and the truth before convicting someone? No wonder people hate Americans - we condemn before knowing the truth.

    Catholic priests have abused boys - should all children of a parish be taken into custody until it is determined if any have been abused?

    We should be scared to death if this is what has happened in America.

  • Get the men
    April 14, 2008 2:56 p.m.

    I agree... they should have taken the men out of the compound not the women and children. But I suppose that would have caused trouble in seeing that the underaged girls who had been married to these sick men were found out too...
    I thought polygamy and bigomy were both against the law! Not to mention sodomy.
    Something has to be done to stop these young girls from this nightmare...
    I would imagine Texas hasn't done everything just right.. but my goodness.... imagine the scope of this investigation....

  • Lynn
    April 14, 2008 2:56 p.m.


    "People in favor of the authorities are letting allegations of child abuse cloud their judgement. Child abuse has not been proven and is only heresay. The call was bogus and was staged for faked. In America you are innocent until proven guilty. Likewise for texas authorities to take these actions they better back it up with very compelling evidence. However they have none. This is what is called probable cause, it was not sufficiently proven. Thus this raid was unconstitutional."

    Child abuse has not been proven? what about the 18 preganant teens under the age of 16?? if thats not child abuse, i dunno what is!

  • Anonymous
    April 14, 2008 2:49 p.m.

    The problem here is that no one seems to want to focus on the fact that children were being sexually and physically abused at this ranch. I am appalled that the comments here do not reflect that very important point. Someone has to protect these children from their own families and fellow FLDS members.

  • Lynn
    April 14, 2008 2:50 p.m.


  • Jamesss
    April 14, 2008 2:29 p.m.

    What is wrong with a person who thinks the LDS church should foster these children. I certainly dont want polygamy introduced to my children or daughters. We have a set of standards and morals in our family that we live by, and I am not changing them for any hair brain crazy idea. These comments are getting stranger by the minute. Perhaps if we let polygamists into our homes our daughters can learn how to be concubines to old men. Give me a break! What kind of foolish statement is that? Are we only dealing with idiots on this post or what on here? If the church expected this I would have my kids out of the church promptly!!
    I feel sorry for the kids involved, but Im not a sympathizer of polygamy and never will be. Morals are morals!!! I am getting tired of the propaganda.

  • open your eyes...
    April 14, 2008 2:34 p.m.

    Texas isn't at fault here. It's not about religion either. It's about child abuse. It is Illegal no matter what state you're in. If these mothers cared about their kids they wouldn't have stood by letting things happen. But, maybe they became mothers when they were just kids themselves and just don't know how to protect their kids cause they weren't protected, brainwashed maybe but not protected. One ques. I thought FLDS didn't like things of the world, aren't cell phones of the world?

  • Johny Fairplay
    April 14, 2008 2:28 p.m.

    Have to laugh at the people posting here who are suddenly concerned about the constitutional rights of the FLDS child rapists and their enablers. Where have you been the last 7 years as the Bush administration, states and their law enforcement minions systematically undermined your constitutional rights to privacy, unreasonable search and seizures etc. What, hitting a little close to home now that it is an affinity group of yours? Wake up suckas.

  • test
    April 14, 2008 2:00 p.m.


  • Concerned
    April 14, 2008 1:13 p.m.

    Here is my concern. The government of Texas trampled the constitutional rights of all of these people. The fathers, mothers, and children. But by being concerned about that, somehow I am to be labled in favor of the abuse of the young ones. What in the world is happening. I always thought that you we innocent until proven guilty in this country, but I guess now everyone is guilty by association. To be clear I think people who abuse children need to be punished. But I also think that the government getting the green light to "rescue" kids from their families because receive an "annonomys tip" that there is the potential "they may be abused" is a dangerous place to be.

  • Concerned
    April 14, 2008 1:00 p.m.

    A) If a man abused my children, I expect law enforcement to put him in jail, NOT let him continue to roam free.

    B) If my children were harmed, I expect my children to be cared for, NOT locked up.

    C) If my husband breaks the law, I expect him to be confined and dealt with appropriately and according to the laws, NOT me and my children to be detained for his actions.

    Nothing about this makes any sense.

    Men broke laws? Then why are there women and children being detained? Are the men being investigated? Questioned? Having to get lawyers and arranging bail hearings to get out of the county jails? Are the men being poked, prodded, and searched as per the normal routine of entering jail facilities? It seems the women and children are experiencing those sorts of things.

    This just all seems backwards to me. Couldn't they have removed the men from the ranch and questioned the women and children in the comforts of their own homes until they determined their homes were unsafe? And if the men were locked up or under protective orders, aren't the children safe in their homes?

  • disgusted mother
    April 14, 2008 1:05 p.m.

    a man could have sex with a 13 year old child (who then gives birth) but an exam would make her uncomfortable!!! I say it's about time someone stopped the wackos of the world. Adults should not be having sex with young teens period.

  • CA
    April 14, 2008 12:51 p.m.

    This is a child abuse case, not a religious test. Tose phones should have been removed since day one. The men are calling and telling the women and children what to do and say. The women won't identify the kids on the advice of the men. I hope Texas sends those kids to foster care ASAP.

  • Prison camp
    April 14, 2008 12:25 p.m.

    The FLDS compound was a prison to their women and children. Clear so. The women in "custody" by Texas authorities are free to leave the shelters at any time. This has been made quite clear as well. So many ignorant posters who claim to love freedom have this situation backwards.

  • Praise Layola!
    April 14, 2008 12:25 p.m.

    at least some people here have common sense . . .

    Look, guys, what you are hearing is not the full story. What you hear is

    "I can't see my kids . . . they took my phone . . . we're not treated too well . . . I miss my kids . . ."

    What you don't hear is

    "I was married at 15 . . . my husband was 34 years older than me . . . I've been pregnant ever since . . . I lived under a messed up, weirdo cult leader . . . my kids grow up by looking the other way when my husband beats me . . ."

    Shocking difference.

    Layola is right. Where are those supposed spiritual husbands? If those husbands are loyal and loving, then why aren't they pleading their wives' cases?

    This is all so brilliantly obvious.

  • Texas Justice?
    April 14, 2008 12:19 p.m.

    The phone call from one of the mothers with the captive children said... The kids are being "Interviewed" by lawyers, but they don't know if the lawyers are there for their defense (so they can confide in them and trust they will "HELP" them and the lawyer-client-privacy will be respected, or if the Lawyers are there to prosecute them (so they are incriminating themselvs and whatever they tell them will be used against them and their parents in court).

    This is NOT the way the Justice system is SUPPOSED to be used.

  • Thanks to Texas DFS?
    April 14, 2008 12:12 p.m.

    I thank Texas DFS for trying to protect the kids, but I think they are going way out of bounds, and I wonder what is REALLY motivating them to do this.

    In an interview Friday, the Sherrif said... "Until the phone call came in, we didn't have any actionable evidence against the FLDS (even after having an inside informer for 4 years). Now the phone call has been proven to be bogus. So they need to be carefull or all the information they gather in this raid will be thrown out of any legal proceedings.

    I think it's obvious taking the familie's cell phone shows these children are "Prisoners" and not being "Protected" by DFS. How does taking their only means of communication from them "Protect" them? All that protects is their case, and that reveals what is important to Texas officials, the case? or the kids? I think it's obviously "The case".

    After 2 weeks of questioning and confinement under stressfull conditions... I think Texas DFS is going to eventually be able to get all the confessions they want (from kids willing to do anything to get out).

  • pathetic women
    April 14, 2008 12:11 p.m.

    Give me a break. These women refused to claim and identify their children. They have aided and abetted rapists. They are conspirators to heinous crimes.

    I dont think they should be allowed to be with the victims and communicate information about the victims with the main perpetrators.

    The only error Texas made was in allowing these so called 'mothers' to accompany the children.

  • Of course you wont
    April 14, 2008 11:46 a.m.

    They are kids, not men, Johnson

  • mjc
    April 14, 2008 11:43 a.m.

    I applaud Texas for taking a stand. These women have been used by men in the name of religion. Everything about this is wrong. The children are suffering and that is my main concern. Return the children to their mothers and to the compound. Arrest the men...

  • Cosmo
    April 14, 2008 11:35 a.m.

    How can a woman who is supposedly enslaved have a cell phone? What crime have these people committed that would cause them to be "interred" by the State of Texas? Where is the person who called CPS alleging abuse? There are some serious problems here for the State of Texas. It looks like they have violated the civil rights of these people. To save face, they will have to "find" some reason to justify what they have done.

  • Joshua
    April 14, 2008 11:06 a.m.

    Comments? How about a snow storm of pedophile defenders?

  • Ted Clayton
    April 14, 2008 10:59 a.m.

    Taking the telephones after allowing them for a week, the exotic search & seizure operation (peering in baby diapers), aggravates the challenges Texas faces, and probably does not forestall any so-called "witness tampering", particularly not after the women had the phones for so long.
    The action serves mainly to make Texas look heavy-handed to outsiders, and further supports the FLDS impression that Texas is using excuses to go after their Church, rather than tackling the problem of underage sex.

  • Matt in Tucson
    April 14, 2008 10:38 a.m.

    Texas has "Jim Crow" laws still on the books. What would happen if they would try to enforce them? No court would uphold them because Supreme Court rulings would take precedence. The same is true for polygamy -- the laws are on the books, but Supreme Court rulings have made them essentially invalid. So, the illegality of polygamy is a red-herring in this debate.

    Child abuse should be punished, but so should unreasonable search and seizure, violation of due process, and false accusation. The ACLU should be much more worried about these gross and far-reaching constitutional violations than the rather trivial violations they are currently attacking.

  • Debbie
    April 14, 2008 10:30 a.m.

    I abhor abuse and believe what has happened within the FLDS Church is wrong in regards to its treatment of women and children. If there is probable cause, round up the abusers. This is one more example where victims are blamed for their abuse. At least they are being punished and having more rights taken away.

    Of course they suffer from the Stockholm Syndrome within their compound and the women don't know a better way. Good thing Texas Child Protective Services is going to show them how wonderful their lives could be on the "outside."

    These officials are playing right into the hands of the abusive men who tell the women that if they leave the outsiders will hurt them. By comparison their life was safer in the compound and the women and children will believe the men even more now.

    Right - the women can leave and are "free" but if they do they cannot come back. Those who were missed in the raid can't come in.

    Texas thinks they are a country unto themselves. No matter what, these women deserve their constitutional rights. The abusers and lawbreakers deserve to be detained, questioned and arrested; not the victims.

  • moderator
    April 14, 2008 10:22 a.m.

    One of our servers is down, which has slowed access to the site. In order to improve access to our Web site we will not be posting comments for the next couple of hours.

  • History repeated
    April 14, 2008 10:16 a.m.

    People in favor of the authorities are letting allegations of child abuse cloud their judgement. Child abuse has not been proven and is only heresay. The call was bogus and was staged for faked. In America you are innocent until proven guilty. Likewise for texas authorities to take these actions they better back it up with very compelling evidence. However they have none. This is what is called probable cause, it was not sufficiently proven. Thus this raid was unconstitutional.

    Set aside the child rape and look at the other things for a minute. Ask yourself, is this the America you want to live in? Is this just and right. As does Lady Justice, put on a blind fold, look at the facts presented then weigh the options. Was this justified.

    The Germans were tricked into condoning the actions against the Jews because they "make all the money." Hatred was built. America imprisoned the Japanese Americans because they were a threat to national security. Only problem is, these are circumstances of the government lying to its people. History looks back on these events with shame. Open a book, learn or repeat the mistakes of the past.

  • It's one thing after another.
    April 14, 2008 10:13 a.m.

    Texas has a "tiger by the tail" and I don't think any of them fully understood the magnitude and issues a raid like this would cause at the time the decided to go in. I feel that they are struggling to keep control of the situation, and the publicity, size and scope of case is killing them. The fact that they as yet have failed to identify the original caller who set off this whole thing is going to put all of evidence obtained from the search in question. The cell phone confications is just one more sign that this is getting away from them.

    It is raids like this that caused the FLDS to become a closed society in the first place. They have become well pracitced at evading the authorities. Good luck to Texas they have a long way to go in proving their cases, all 416 of them.

  • Doug S
    April 14, 2008 10:12 a.m.

    Frankly, considering that the Deseret News more or less threw the FLDS under the bus during Short Creek, I'm glad to see them taking a more nuanced view this time around.

  • Artirome
    April 14, 2008 9:50 a.m.

    Let me get this straight. They can't identify the accuser or the perp. Based on that non-information, from a non-accuser, Texas storms the compound,
    and relocates all the women and children, separating the families and not allowing some women to have any contact with their own children. They then smash through the prayer circle to crash their sacred site and tantalize us with suggestions of ritual sex. Then, to make sure there's no contact with the outside (for their own protection, of course), they confiscate all the phones of the non-accused. Meantime, the unidentified dirty old men disappear into the Texas badlands or back to polygamy-friendly Utah and Arizona. This gets worse every day. I'm waiting for the report that it may have been a prank call and Texas has no case -- and has to pay millions in reparations.

  • BJ
    April 14, 2008 9:48 a.m.

    The women making these statements cannot be trusted to describe the situation truthfully. They take welfare money as 2nd and 3rd wives. They KNOW how to work the system. Lying comes naturally to them as well as their husband(s)when they feel the situation merits it.

    I applaud the state of TX for having the guts to do something about the abuse taking place under the facade of a religion. This is not a freedom of religion case it is about whether or not we are going to continue to allow the FLDS to practice sexual abuse against minors. I agree with we allow child sacrifice if it is part of our religion?

    Don't let these women yank your emotional chain. It is what they are counting on.

  • JMC
    April 14, 2008 8:34 a.m.

    Right or Wrong should not be what you are looking at right now. It seems to me that know matter what the state is intent on not returning the children to the families until they figure everything out. That means Foster Care, and with children raised in that fasion you can't just put them into a normal foster home and expect them to adapt. They are going to need homes from as close of an environment as posibble. Otherwise more damage will have been done to innocent children. The Members from LDS Church can give them that. The question is, is enough people from the church willing to step up to the plate for these children and take them in when the time comes for the State to place them.

  • Curious
    April 14, 2008 8:31 a.m.

    Where is the ACLU?

    Is the fact they aren't standing up for these people's rights telling?

  • Freedom Lover
    April 14, 2008 8:04 a.m.

    CPS are now the real abusers. Can you imagine being a sheltered religious young girl who has never been seen naked, now being forced to undergo an OB/GYN exam, and not even having the right to consent or have your mother present, now that is abuse! CPS and Warren Jeffs are essentially equally evil.

  • J.Raye
    April 14, 2008 7:54 a.m.

    What about the 13th amendment: "Neither slavery nor involuntay servitude...shall exist within the United States..." And that includes the great state of Texas. Wake up, Utah and free the flds child-bride slaves in your own state.

  • Mahershalalhashbaz
    April 14, 2008 7:47 a.m.

    Amen! Texas Justice? Not. The Texas justice system is in disarray.

  • Big Youth
    April 14, 2008 7:40 a.m.

    The Attorneys for the children requested the order, and it was granted. The moms have to contend with the fact that these Attorneys are not there to represent their interest, but just the interest of the child. They need to have their own attorneys. Its a three-way match.

    Its all proper and correct

  • Layola
    April 14, 2008 7:40 a.m.

    Where are the men? Why aren't they asking for help from the Governor?

    I have no doubt that they were in contact with the women inside, conspiring to make the CPS look as bad as possible.

    Where are the men? Why do we not see them on TV asking for their children?

    Why doesn't the Deseret News ask the women they talked to some questions like how old were you when you were 'married'?

    Do you know any of the women who had babies at the age of 14 or 15?

    Would you let you daughter be married to a 50 year old man at the age of 15?

    Could we get some real questions instead of this tugging at the heartstrings stuff? That is easy. But in the end the welfare and rights of the children are the most important.

  • Dave
    April 14, 2008 7:37 a.m.

    This isn't about religion, this is about having sex with children, it is illegal.

  • Blaine
    April 14, 2008 7:31 a.m.

    "First they came for the Jews and I did not speak out because I was not a Jew. Then they came for the Communists and I did not speak out because I was not a Communist. Then they came for the trade unionists and I did not speak out because I was not a trade unionist. Then they came for me and there was no one left to speak out for me." -- Lutheran Pastor Martin Niemller

  • unbelievable.
    April 14, 2008 7:36 a.m.

    No communications? Not allowed contact with Moms or Dads? I have had foster kids beaten to an inch of their little lives, and even they got to see thier kids (supervised) until the courts severed parental rights. Put the abusers in Jail; not the abused. This is NOT protecting children, but making sure they cannot and will not practice their religion. Polygamy may be wrong, but so is hearing 400 plus kids into sub-liveable conditions like sheep, and then taking away their rights, one by one by one. They are treated as prisoners, when the real abusers are running free. Texas Justice at it's best.

  • Momof5kids
    April 14, 2008 7:28 a.m.

    Give me a break about the religious freedom. Good for Texas! Unlike Utah, Arizona and Nevada, at least they have no tolerance for this religous group that continually breaks the law. This is NOT an issue of religious freedom. This is an issue of illegal activity. At the very least, the FLDS has a history of tax evasion and working the welfare system, and practicing polygamy. They are continually suspected of having "spiritual marriages" to underage girls which in the USA is considered sexual child abuse. Good grief, the Texas authorities have in custody a 16 year old who has had four babies with mostly likely a much older man!! Whoever supports this group is criminal themselves.

  • TROrmond
    April 14, 2008 7:00 a.m.

    These women and children are in a *shelter* correct? I ask because this is sounding more and more like an internment camp to me.

  • Bill
    April 14, 2008 6:54 a.m.

    I am a former law enforcement liason with Texas CPS. I have been following this situation and it appears that something is terribly amiss.
    CPS has a directive to make every attempt to keep the family together.
    If things are as they are claimed to be in the press, then the 16 year old who allegedly made outcry as to ongoing abuse should have been the only child to be removed pending investigation.
    The removal of more than 400 children at one time is unprecedented. These children are being forced to undergo intimate physical examinations without cause, other than a fishing expedition by the state of Texas.
    The conditions described that these people are being confined in would be deemed to be unsuitable for criminal detainees.
    This has the appearence of being a complete travesty of justice.
    I am not a Mormon, but my prayers are with these people.

  • snickerdoodle
    April 14, 2008 6:55 a.m.

    Guys, I have one suggestion for you.

    Do not rely on the Des. News article for "news".

    You know how the media can twist a story.

    Snickerdoodle suggests "Escape" by Carolyn Jessop. It's really a terrible story. Girls cannot choose who they are married to, and many are stuck marrying old men. That's what happened to Carolyn. It really makes me angry when I see people like Brent.

    Please read up on FLDS doctrines -- I'm sure that will sway you slightly.

    *did you know*

    Warren Jeffs declared that laughter drives the spirit from your body.

  • Anonymous
    April 14, 2008 6:46 a.m.

    Who's next? All of us. The government is testing their wings then they will be after anyone for any reason. Remember what happened to the Jensens here in Utah? I wrote a letter to the governor of Texas and have emailed everyone I know and asked them to do the same. People this is why we need Ron Paul for president. Our constitution means nothing anymore and we are slowly being led down to the depths of communisim, we are half way there already. Think I'm a kook? Open your eyes.

  • Judy Mother Freedom
    April 14, 2008 6:45 a.m.

    As Long as Other Religions don't break the law they'll be fine.. Abusing any wife is against the law....If you Don't break the laws then you are free to practice any religion! Marrying off minors is against the law folks especially. 13,14,15,16,17, year old girls and when you abuse them it's double against the law!!!
    Do these young Girls have any freedom to choose a different life style?

  • VegasBaby
    April 14, 2008 6:43 a.m.

    I don't think the 4th amendment covers child rape.

  • Miser
    April 14, 2008 6:46 a.m.

    I can't believe this is happening in America! I hope those FLDS attorneys are ready to sue for each violation of the constitution.

    Multiply that by 416 + 137, you've got yourself a rather large bill, Texas.

  • Jim
    April 14, 2008 6:39 a.m.

    We have NO rights living in the Socialist States of America.

  • JND
    April 14, 2008 6:37 a.m.

    Blah, blah, blah!

  • Anonymous
    April 14, 2008 6:42 a.m.

    We can't have people seeing these people live like Cattle can we now? Nor can we have anyone speaking out against the raid. It's best we shut them up, otherwise the people in favor of this raid might see the error of their ways. Good job judge. Don't mess with Texas!

  • cornered
    April 14, 2008 6:39 a.m.

    It probably never occurred to the Judge that the adult women would have the 'freedom' to call anyone they want with a cell phone. After all these women are just 'objects' in this society.

    This is a concentration camp, just like Utah's Topaz. Hopefully things won't get any uglier, but I won't hold my breath.

  • Freedom
    April 14, 2008 6:26 a.m.

    These people had all they needed in that compound to take care of these kids comfortably. Why doesn't Texas look more closely to the slums and the homeless where there is obvious signs of abuse and child prostitution. Go help the people who need it.
    This FLDS situation obviously the men need to be questioned to see who is an actual perpetrator. Don't allow these social workers to abuse these kids by prodding around on their bodies. This is discusting.
    God bless Texas they need it.
    God bless the kids and grant them freedom.

  • Why?
    April 14, 2008 5:41 a.m.

    Since the LDS Church has taken repeated pains to point out that it has NOTHING whatsoever to do with this group in Texas, why does the Desert News (owned by the Church)seem to be spending an inordinate amount of time, effort (phone interviews, sending reporters to Texas)and space reporting on this? They don't go to this trouble for other U.S. regional stories.

  • MO knows
    April 14, 2008 5:40 a.m.

    Oh come on and get real, this has NOTHING to do with religious freedom. This cult has had its own little "sex farm" for way too long. Its time that these pedophiles stop being able to hide behind the "religious freedom" banner and be brought to account for their heinous acts. Those that defend these animals (worse than animals) are as guilty as they are. Someone needs to step up to the plate for all the women and girls who are unable to do it for themselves. These types of closed communities most often do lead toward sexual abuses. There should be NO tolerance for this behavior. The children should be taken from BOTH parents, the women AND men should be sterilized so they cannot breed more "sex toys" for horrible old men.

  • suddenly everyone is at risk
    April 14, 2008 5:34 a.m.

    "...The Amish are next..."

    Hardly; the Amish obey the laws of the land, and don't hide in compounds. It's telling how an organization that prides itself on 'being apart' or 'right', in opposition to everyone else suddenly wants to throw itself in amongst other groups when it feels the harsh glare of the spotlight that it has brought upon itself.

  • TommyReb
    April 14, 2008 5:25 a.m.

    brent: What would your opinion be if someone wanted to follow the Aztec religious practice of human sacrifice? Child abuse is just as despiciable so Texas has an obligation to investigate any complaints it receives. Now Texas may indeed get sued, but I doubt that a Texas jury would award anything more than a dollar in damages. A rural Texas sheriff who comes across a body filled with bullet holes is likely to first ask "Did he need killing?" and that is largely the mentality of the folks there. No, the FLDS were living on borrowed time the minute they acquired the YFZ Ranch. With their prophet now serving a couple of consecutive 5 to life terms in Utah and is about to be tried by Arizona for more alleged criminal activity they became too well known to hope to survive...

  • Buang
    April 14, 2008 5:12 a.m.

    Before this article even starts getting all the posts about the LDS Church being responsible for the polygamy thing, the real issue you here is a lot of innocent women and children being held against their will and deprived of some very basic Constitutional rights. The judge acts as though the women and children holed up in Ft. Concho are sequestered like a jury. It's almost as though these women and children are in Guantanomo Bay. I Sure hope they don't have hoods on their heads.

    If anything it's the men that should have been halled off and the women and children should have been left to live in their homes. Prosecute the men who have married any underage girls.

  • Greg
    April 14, 2008 4:07 a.m.

    What's next? It only gets worse from here...but look at the bright least they did not have tanks driven into their homes nor were they burned to death.

  • brent
    April 14, 2008 2:13 a.m.

    I can only hope Texas is sued to the very max for this fiasco.....

  • brent
    April 14, 2008 1:59 a.m.

    America ! what has happened to religious freedom? Who's next? why only mainstream religion has freedom to worship as they see fit??? Shame on Texas

  • Bo knows
    April 14, 2008 1:51 a.m.

    Are you kidding me? First, take away 4th amendment rights, then take away first amendment free speech rights. The Amish are next, followed by the Jews. Watch your backs folks. We're all in for a long ride.

  • Eye Dee Ten Tee
    April 14, 2008 1:39 a.m.

    The best thing that can come out of this is the Texas CPS being sued for all they are worth!!! What next, a concentration camp to keep these American citizens safe? We have unlawful search and seizure, illegal imprisonment, and I'll bet real money that we find out the 'judge' who has been issuing these warrants is some Baptist zealot who just cannot stand to see people who have beliefs different from his. Where is the ACLU? Why has the press not investigated the 'judge'? It doesn't matter if you agree with poligamy or not, the government has clearly overstepped its bounds.