Tom Horne Attempting to Disband Police Force in Polygamist Towns
Attorney General Tom Horne is asking a federal judge to disband the police department that patrols the polygamist towns of Colorado City and Hildale, on the Arizona-Utah border.
Horne, in addition to all of his extracurricular activities, has been a long-time critic of the "marshal's office," which he claims operates "as the de facto law enforcement arm of the FLDS Church."
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Horne's action comes as a result of a civil case won by a non-FLDS couple who claimed -- like many before them have -- that the church and the town are one and the same, and they discriminate against non-FLDS members.
The Department of Justice has also filed a civil-rights lawsuit against the town, claiming widespread discrimination against non-FLDS members. Allegations are generally that the police department is more loyal to imprisoned FLDS leader Warren Jeffs than the law. Allegations of crooked law enforcement include a door-to-door roundup and slaughter of all the dogs in town, to marshal's deputies threatening to arrest non-FLDS children for playing at a public park, and much more.
In the civil case against the towns, Cooke v. Colorado City, the current chief of police at the marshal's office, Helaman Barlow, went through the trial denying members of the marshal's office were more loyal to the church than the law. Barlow told a different story in a deposition with the Justice Department, after seeking and being granted immunity from prosecution:
|From the transcript of the DoJ deposition.|
According to a motion filed by Horne, Barlow "confessed under oath that he had concern that the other deputies in the Marshal's Office were more loyal to Lyle Jeffs (the local FLDS bishop and brother of jailed FLDS Prophet Warren Jeffs) than they were to their oath of office."
Barlow proceeded to admit to incredible amounts of corruption at the marshal's office. From Horne's filing: