Greg Peterson, GOP activist charged in sex abuse cases, discovered dead in cabin

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  • John Simpson ARLINGTON, VA
    Oct. 25, 2012 4:28 p.m.

    I admire the women who came forward to tell the truth about Peterson's abuse. If it were the word of one woman against one man, the truth might be murky. For example, in the Duke Lacrosse case there was one woman and one woman only who accused the team members of rape, and she was ultimately proven to have been a pathological liar. But in this case there was a clear pattern of coercion on Peterson's part. Moreover, it's plain that he thought (somehow) that he could get away with date rape on a repeated basis.

    I don't think that it's fundamentally a story about politics, even though Peterson was politically prominent. For all I know, Peterson could have viewed Bill Clinton as a role model -- after all, Clinton pretty much escaped punishment for his rape of Juanita Broderick, his assault on Kathleen Willey, his trashing of Paula Jones and his corruption of Monica Lewinsky. It's a story about sin and the wages of sin.

  • Rifleman Salt Lake City, Utah
    Oct. 25, 2012 6:27 a.m.

    Re: LDS Liberal Farmington, UT
    "Gee, I wonder if..."

    What the men you list all have in common is a sorrow that this man made decisions that led to his everlasting destruction. Certainly it is nothing a decent human being would celebrate.

  • patriot Cedar Hills, UT
    Oct. 24, 2012 4:18 p.m.

    I have to think about the victims of this monster. They really deserved to see him in prison for life but he took the cheap way out. For a man to take his own life he has to be consumed by guilt , fear, etc.. There is nothing good about this entire sad situation.

  • Sam2015 Irvine, CA
    Oct. 24, 2012 2:10 p.m.

    I knew Greg well - worked for him at Satcom during BYU days and was in his ward for a time. I have also kept in touch with him over the years. Greg could be an absolute freak-show but he was also smart, charismatic and funny. I have no idea if the accusations are true - my instincts tell me they probably were but I guess we'll never hear his side of the story now. I knew Greg well enough to know that he was not pure evil. I pray that Greg feels remorse and repentant for his actions and that Christ is merciful with him as I hope that Christ is with me one day. RIP Greg Peterson.

  • boxerdog915 Clearfield, UT
    Oct. 24, 2012 1:35 p.m. tears shed here....

  • LDS Liberal Farmington, UT
    Oct. 24, 2012 12:35 p.m.

    Gee, I wonder if...

    Sens. Orrin Hatch and Mike Lee,
    Rep. Jason Chaffetz,
    Gov. Gary Herbert and
    4th District congressional candidate Mia Love,
    be attending his funeral?

  • Shawnm750 West Jordan, UT
    Oct. 24, 2012 12:07 p.m.

    "The criminal cases against Peterson will now be dropped." Gee, really? We're not going to put a dead man on trial, or leave any of his warrants outstanding? Way to state the obvious D-News.

    @The Scientist - I think it's unfair to imply that only the GOP has crazy people in it. The only reason we know this guy's party affiliation is because he's so well know within the party. I'm sure there are plenty of other criminals that are democrats whose party affiliation is never revealed in news stories simply because they aren't as well known.

  • Randolph Winthrop Taylorsville, UT
    Oct. 24, 2012 12:01 p.m.

    Re: Rifleman

    Good old RCP's manipulated count also shows 142 solid electoral votes for Obama and only 76 solid for Romney. That's called optimism.

  • Randolph Winthrop Taylorsville, UT
    Oct. 24, 2012 11:41 a.m.

    Re: Rifleman

    The only thing sadder than Romney losing is seeing people pretend like he has a chance. Nice try. You can't just magically make him win by typing numbers.

  • ECR Burke, VA
    Oct. 24, 2012 11:26 a.m.

    JWB - Thank you for reminding me of what it's like to live in Utah.

  • Randolph Winthrop Taylorsville, UT
    Oct. 24, 2012 11:11 a.m.

    He was a very passionate man. If only he could have been helped.

  • bullet56 Olympia, WA
    Oct. 24, 2012 11:11 a.m.

    My compassion is for the women victims in this story. I hope they get closure somehow from this, and trauma help from social and church services. As a Democrat, I take no pleasure in the fact that this happened to an up and coming GOP fundraiser or activist. If the story were from a very blue state; such as Washington, it could read the same except for the political party. Given that Utah is so overwhelmingly Republican, it stands to reason that most of the individuals ever reported on in the state for good or bad, will be GOP supporters.

  • Rifleman Salt Lake City, Utah
    Oct. 24, 2012 10:53 a.m.

    Re: LDS Liberal Farmington, UT
    "To all you GOP defenders.... "

    Latest RCP electoral count poll:
    Romney 206, Obama 201

  • The Scientist Provo, UT
    Oct. 24, 2012 10:36 a.m.

    I am and have always been a registered Republican.

    You were saying?

  • JWB Kaysville, UT
    Oct. 24, 2012 10:19 a.m.

    I believe the District Attorney is Democrat and he was involved in that process, so it is not just the accused. It did make it easier for the DA's office not to have to proceed with the case but their system is sort of broken. This is a Chicago type of event but not normal for Utah.

    The justice system was robbed but to put these alleged victims on the stand would have also been a hard thing to do and Mr. Peterson is now gone but his actions will live for some, forever.

    That video of all those candidates at his cabin also is in my mind. Lobbyists are not always pure in what their intent is, even though it may appear good.

    In Primary Elections, especially in Utah, there is so much to be cautious about. When it comes to the General Election, people have usually been vetted by their opponents during the Primary and General process.

    What is the intent of the person leading candidates to think of themselves as indestructable? Greed and power come to mind.

    In Illinois, they have had more experience than we have here.

    Caution should be used in all life aspects.

  • JWB Kaysville, UT
    Oct. 24, 2012 10:02 a.m.

    When I lived in Illinois for 9 years there were plenty of Democrats that fell into this type of embarrassing situations for them.

    You sort of expect that type of thing in Illinois. How many of their state and federal officers have gone to prison? Plenty just in the past 20 years, alone.

    Utahns, especially politicians, should be as cautious here, even with people who are of the same faith can take one down the path, either politically, financially, spiritually and even temporally, physically, emotionally, and psychologically, if you don't keep your brain open.

    Honesty has to do with not deceiving. Integrity is a balance of all truth. Remember, plenty of government, state, local and federal, have integrity in their mission and operational statements but don't live by that principle. They do that, potentially to deceive and not to make a statement of how they live.

    We live in a world where plenty of people try to spin in a way that will make them look good to others. Inside their own body, they may not even look good to themselves.

    Misery loves company and our prisons are full of people that enjoy each other's company, alone.

  • juni4ling Somewhere in Colorado, CO
    Oct. 24, 2012 9:58 a.m.

    Heartfelt prayers for the female victims.

    As for the posts attacking Utah values, and the Utah political climate... Democrats have their own troubles of their own (Clinton, Edwards).

    The difference... It appears that the Utah political machine will prosecute guys accused, whereas the DNC just gave Clinton a rousing standing-o at their convention.

    Yeah, I will stick with Utah values.

    You can keep your (Clinton, Edwards) Democrat-Party values. Democrats demonize and objectify women. Case in point: Bill Clinton's rousing, chanting standing-ovation at the recent DNC.

    A good day for Democrats, and Democrat values. That was a sad day for women.

    Me? I will stick to Utah values. Democrat values, the values praised by those who give hero-worship to Bill Clinton (and John Edwards) have absolutely no place in civilized society.

  • LDS Liberal Farmington, UT
    Oct. 24, 2012 9:35 a.m.

    To all you GOP defenders....

    Greg Peterson built his entire persona to rape these women around being a "Powerful GOP Politician", and used his access to the GOP politicians to get what he wanted.

    Don't blame the Deseret News for reporting the facts.

    Sorry it makes the GOP look bad.
    If have an issue about it, take it up with the deceased - not the newspaper.

  • procuradorfiscal Tooele, UT
    Oct. 24, 2012 9:23 a.m.

    Re: "It really is time for major changes in GOP-dominated Utah politics."

    I agree -- when you see things like this, it looks WAY too much like Democrat-dominated politics.

  • majmajor Layton, UT
    Oct. 24, 2012 9:05 a.m.

    He was a coward that took the coward's way out of a situation that he created.

    My thoughts and prayers are with the ladies that he likely abused. I hope they get the help they need.

  • toosmartforyou Farmington, UT
    Oct. 24, 2012 8:38 a.m.

    This should save a lengthy and messy trial and taxpayers a great deal of money. (I can see why that upsets attorneys working the case.)

  • mecr Bountiful, UT
    Oct. 24, 2012 8:36 a.m.

    And democrats are all saint and pure of heart.... give me a break...

    There are bad apples everywhere no matter what. Let's say he decided to bring his case to the Highest Judge of all. I am sure the Lord will judge him in a perfect way. I can't judge him because it's not my call and not worth my time. However, I feel sorry for his mother who I read was very upset. As a mother, I wouldn't want to be in her shoes.

    I do have a question: the bond money... can the bond people get a refund of what they paid?

  • JWB Kaysville, UT
    Oct. 24, 2012 8:25 a.m.

    This is sad when the District Attorney let a high profile case of a Republican lobbyist potentially become more political allowing the individual to post bail after the individual's preliminary hearing when the judge had concerns about this individual. The Sheriff's office knew about the weapons and the accused was definitely unstable having multiple charges of the same act with different women.

    He was able to bring in many people to his cabin for his own purposes and his balloon burst when these ladies brought charges against him in his world of potential deceit.

    We have had a similar case with the Powell family with a broken system that should have highlighted certain aspects of an accused person. There is no justice for the people that are involved that are trying to keep their lives intact as much as they can.

  • Aggielove Cache county, USA
    Oct. 24, 2012 8:16 a.m.

    A scientist.
    Every day you wake up, know this, your in Utah. If ou truly feel the way you explained, head for Geramy.

  • Rifleman Salt Lake City, Utah
    Oct. 24, 2012 8:08 a.m.

    Re: A Scientist Provo, UT
    "It really is time for major changes in GOP-dominated Utah politics."

    Trying to link the man's evil behavior with any political group destroys the commenter's credibility. To suggest that either the GOP (or DNC) condoned this suspect's criminal behavior is so very juvenile.

  • Common Sense Czar Sandy, UT
    Oct. 24, 2012 7:11 a.m.

    @ A Scientist

    Really?? You're going to go political in this tragedy. Evil can take many forms...and cloak itself in different clothing. Several women and their families have had their lives destroyed by disgusting acts by this individual, and all you take away from it is "it really is time for major changes in GOP-dominated Utah politics." That's a sad commentary.

  • Nan BW ELder, CO
    Oct. 24, 2012 7:08 a.m.

    Scientist, I think this has far less to do with politics than human foibles that have nothing to do with party affiliations. In fact, what you are trying to do is open a can of worms in a totally inappropriate setting.

  • raybies Layton, UT
    Oct. 24, 2012 6:50 a.m.

    Actually the official claiming that no good can be said of this is just being politically correct. Some good can be said of this. The guy saved the victims the pain of having to relive their experiences and the expense of long drawn out legal hearings. Victims also no longer need to worry that this guy will ever attempt to exact revenge or harm them again.

    Obviously there are those that will disagree whether the punishment fits the crime, but since it is self-inflicted, the only injustice done was by the one who denied mercy to himself and his victims.

  • ECR Burke, VA
    Oct. 24, 2012 6:04 a.m.

    "But he made bail and he was out there," Gill said. "Making bail is a constitutional right."

    Is it? There is a constitutional provision against "excessive bail" but it is also constitutional to impose "preventive detention" when there is a risk of flight or if release of the prosioner poses a threat to the community.

    "Peterson did have multiple weapons inside his cabin. It was unknown Tuesday whether he had any weapons restrictions as a condition for his bail."

    "A decision to uphold Peterson's $2 million bail was recently made by 3rd District Judge Katherine Bernards-Goodman after she noted additional information about Peterson revealed during his preliminary hearing that concerned her..."

    It seems these statements would make it justifiable to remand the prisoner rather than release him.

    An accused rapist with significant financial assets and political connections with the highest ranking elected officials in the state is now dead of an apparent suicide. Hopefully this case will continue to receive the scrutiny it deserves.

  • Rifleman Salt Lake City, Utah
    Oct. 24, 2012 6:01 a.m.

    We all make this world a better place. Some because we came, and some because we left earlier than expected.

  • NeilT Clearfield, UT
    Oct. 24, 2012 6:00 a.m.

    Why is the D-News so obsessed with bringing politics into this tragic story. The fact that some powerful politicians attended political events at his cabin is irrevelent to his alleged criminal behavior. It appears the D-News is implying guilt by association. I don't believe Petersen was capable of feeling remorse or accepting the consequences of his criminal behavior.

  • theodoreable Heber City, UT
    Oct. 24, 2012 5:49 a.m.

    sad for his family....happy for his victims....glad his trail began yesterday!

  • A Scientist Provo, UT
    Oct. 24, 2012 2:23 a.m.

    What a tragedy. Reality is stranger than fiction. Leave it to the Utah GOP to be filled with all the drama one can imagine.

    It really is time for major changes in GOP-dominated Utah politics.