Warren Jeffs’ grandson charged with kidnapping
SALT LAKE CITY –
Utah has filed charges of kidnapping the grandson of imprisoned polygamous leader Warren Jeffs, saying he and his sister’s 10-year-old daughter went missing, apparently to keep her away from her mother. on orders from Jeffs from the Texas prison.
In court documents filed in Piute County on Monday, prosecutors said Heber Jeffs, 54, has kept his niece in his Kingston, Utah home since his uncle spoke earlier this year. that he had received a revelation from the Lord instructing his followers to “gather” the women of the community “and prepare to move to one or more locations as directed by Warren Jeffs,” or his son, Helaman Jeffs.
Warren Jeffs is president of the Orthodox Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. The Faith is an offshoot of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, widely known as the Mormon church, and espouses polygamy. Historically, it was based in a small town that straddles the Utah-Arizona border. The Orthodox Church rejected polygamy more than a century ago.
Since being found guilty of child molestation rooted in underage marriages, Warren Jeffs has continued to serve as the group’s prophet from a federal prison in Texas, where he serving a life sentence.
Prosecutors say Heber Jeffs and his wife Sarah have cared for their niece, whose name is not listed in court documents, since she was an infant, since her parents split . Rose Jeffs, the girl’s mother who is no longer a FLDS member, was allowed regular visits and “full and free access to her daughter” until August. At that point, Heber Jeffs told her he He won’t allow visits anymore.
Court documents point to disclosure as the main reason, saying that Warren Jeffs “ordered or ordered that female members of the FLDS should quit their current jobs and activities and ‘gather’.” (basically ‘shelter in place’),” likely in preparation for the lifting of the year-long ban on marriage or childbearing across the community. They said Jeffs’ disclosure directed men in the community to send money from construction jobs to leaders “pending further instructions.”
Rose Jeffs, according to court documents, then asked to bring her daughter back, at which point Heber Jeffs said he intended to cut off contact. A month later, when law enforcement began pursuing Heber Jeffs, they could not find him at home or the places where he worked. The court issued an arrest warrant for him and he remains outlawed with the 10-year-old girl.
Court documents do not list Jeffs’ attorney, and the listed phone number for his home in Kingston, Utah, has been discontinued.
The charges come weeks after federal prosecutors filed kidnapping charges against members of another polygamous group that split from the FLDS after Jeffs was incarcerated. In that case, prosecutors said followers of Sam Bateman, a prophet who saw himself as Jeffs’ successor in a smaller separatist group, had three women run away with their children. into a state foster care facility after his arrest this fall.