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Standoff At Polygamist Retreat

By Wyatt Earp | April 6, 2008

Trust me, this will get out of hand quickly.

ELDORADO, Texas – Sect leaders at a polygamist compound in West Texas refused Saturday to let authorities search a temple for a teenage girl whose report of abuse led to the raid, and authorities said they were preparing “for the worst.”

If no agreement is reached with sect leaders, authorities will forcibly remove the sect’s followers “as peaceably as possible,” Allison Palmer, a prosecutor in Tom Green County, told the San Angelo Standard-Times.

Medical workers are being sent “in case this were to a go in a way that no one wants,” Palmer said. Law enforcers are “preparing for the worst,” she said.

The simple fact that law enforcement officers are hedging their bets with this kind of talk should send up a red flag. These people expect bloodshed, and are preparing the public for it. God help them all.

A search warrant authorized troopers to enter the retreat, run by the Fundamentalist Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints. They are looking for evidence of a marriage between the girl and a 50-year-old man. Court documents the girl had a baby eight months ago, when she was 15.

State welfare officials on Friday removed 52 girls from the compound. Marleigh Meisner, a spokeswoman for Child Protective Services, said another 131 residents were removed overnight. By Saturday afternoon, 137 children and 46 women were being housed and interviewed at local community centers. (H/T – )

Jesus Christ! (No pun intended.) What the hell was going on inside that place? I certainly hope this comes to a peaceful conclusion, but my gut instinct is telling me that this will end very badly.

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