Colorado City -- the town on the Utah/Arizona border that child rapist Warren Jeffs used to call home -- is being sued by the Justice Department's Civil Rights Division for religious and housing discrimination.
The feds say the Fundamentalist Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints and Jeffs are still running Colorado City and the neighboring Utah town of Hildale to their fanatical religious liking -- a fact several of Arizona's legislators continue to deny.
Much of the lawsuit brings allegations against the "Marshal's Office" for policing on the basis of FLDS law, instead of enforcing actual laws.
The unconstitutional policing allegations include the Marshals confronting people about disobeying FLDS rules, slaughtering
non-FLDS members' animals, helping return underage brides to their creepy husbands,
and much more.
"The Cities' governments, including the Marshal's Office, have been deployed to carry out the will and dictates of FLDS leaders, particularly Warren Jeffs and the official to whom he delegates authority," the lawsuit says.
This has only been going on for, oh, "at least 20 years," according to the feds' complaint, and the problem has been highlighted recently as Arizona Attorney General Tom Horne has tried to replace Colorado City's police force.
Since Horne's effort to dismantle the Marshal's Office failed in the form of legislation, he recently doled out some cash to the Mohave County Sheriff's Office to patrol the city, in addition to the Marshals.
It's routine for the Marshal's Office to treat the FLDS devotees like royalty, and treat non-FLDS members like dirt, according to what's outlined in the lawsuit.
Non-FLDS folks get screwed by the Marshals for just about everything from getting traffic tickets to crimes against them not being investigated.
Some of the allegations you've probably heard of before, many of which can be found in former New Times scribe John Dougherty's saga on polygamy in the state.
We'll reproduce two (of the many) strange points outlined in the lawsuit below:
- In 2001, Jeffs issued an edict that all domestic dogs would be banned from the Cities. Less than one month later, in compliance with Jeffs's edict, Marshal's Deputies went to each household in the Cities and asked residents to turn over any dogs that they had in the home to the Officers. The Marshal's Deputies then shot and killed the dogs in a slaughter pit a short distance from the Cities. Two of the Marshal's Deputies involved in this incident remain employed by the Marshal's Office.
- On or about May 18, 2010, a group of non-FLDS children attempted to play at the [public park]. A Marshal's Deputy told the children that they could not play at the Park and threatened them with arrest if they continued to play.
The lawsuit also implicates the towns in housing discrimination -- like the water authority's refusal to run water to new properties owned by non-FLDS members -- and other town entities for routine denial of access to public facilities.
You can browse through the lawsuit below:
Colorado City Suit