Warren Jeffs: The Polygamist Cult Leader

Warren Jeffs: The Polygamist Cult Leader

Warren Steed Jeffs was born on December 3rd, 1955 in Sacramento California to his mother Marilyn and his father Rulon. He was born into a family that believed in an offshoot form of the Mormon religion. Warren’s father, Rulon was the leader of the FLDS church throughout Warren’s childhood and into his adulthood. When Rulon Jeffs passed away in 2002, Warren naturally took his spot as church leader and became known as the "president and prophet" of the congregation and small community that Rulon once led.

Being the leader of cult-like community, the convicted polygamist pedophile still issues commands to his sect from his jail cell...

The Sect

Warren was now in complete control of the cult-like religious community his father once led. He and his followers lived in a desert town that straddles the states of Arizona and Utah called Short Creek. While not condoned by law or many other religions, the followers of FLDS are considered to be a radical polygamist sect that borrowed most of their preachings and ways of life by the Mormon religion.

According to FLDS followers, women are not supposed to expose any parts of their bodies. Because of this, women must wear outfits that cover their bodies from the neck to the ankles. Women must also never cut their hair. Followers believe that long hair is needed to wash men’s feet as an anointing. Children were not to attend public schools. Instead, they were to be home-schooled. According to the FLDS church, public school was evil and could end up brainwashing young children.

Warren Jeffs
The family.

Any type of entertainment is banned in the FLDS church. This means absolutely no television, pets, sports, newspapers, Internet, or celebrations are allowed. According to their religious beliefs, basic entertainment ends up putting a damper on their faith. Most shockingly, because followers were taught that Warren was the ‘president and prophet’ he was in complete control of who will marry who. Warren believed that the role of a wife was to obey her husband, regardless of whether or not it seemed moral. While underage marriage, underage sexual relationships, and incestual relationships are illegal in most of the United States, these types of behaviors were completely acceptable within the congregation.

Yearning for Zion Ranch
Yearning for Zion Ranch. A 1,700-acre community that at one time housed as many as 700 people.

Warren, being the authority figure to his congregation, decided whether or not grown men would have sexual relationships with underage girls. He also decided whether or not underage girls would marry men who were 20+ years their senior. Jeff’s also condoned marriage between relatives, mostly distant cousins. In layman’s terms, Warren had complete control over everything and anything his people did – day in and day out.

The Crimes

Warren, although viewed as a God like figure by his devotees, was nothing of such. Throughout his years as leader of the FLDS community, Warren was accused of forcing himself upon little girls and even little boys. One of his young female victims came forward and claimed that she was five years old when Warren took her to the basement of the community building and forced himself inside her. When asked about the sex abuse crimes that took place with youngsters, Warren claimed to perform such sexual acts because his God told him to do so. He also claimed that many of the rapes and molestations took place to straighten the children up and discipline them.

Warren Jeffs and his child bride
Warren Jeffs and his child bride

The Capture

Local police officials knew that the FLDS community was involved in illegal sexual activity. However, it took them years to find proof and eventually take Warren Jeff down. According to law enforcement, sexual abuse allegations started all the way back in the 1980s within the FLDS community. Warren’s own nephew even filed a lawsuit against him in 2004 claiming he was sodomized by his uncle.

Fast forward to June, 2005. Warren was charged with sexual assault on a minor with the conspiracy commit sexual misconduct. In this particular case, a 14-year-old girl was forced to marry Warren. During the time of their marriage, she was raped repeatedly by him, had gotten pregnant several times, and went through several miscarriages. Following this incident, Warren was finally put on the FBI’s most wanted fugitives list and featured on the show America’s Most Wanted. This led to Warren running away from his beloved people. During Warren’s time on the run, Warren’s brother, Seth, was stopped by police with the suspicion of harboring a fugitive. Evidence was found in the vehicle that led police right to Warren’s Nevada location where he was stopped while trying to escape the law once again.

On August 28th, 2006, Warren was finally arrested. He was no longer a free man. Once his charges were read against him, Warren was extradited back to the state of Utah where he would face trial. He was convicted on two counts of sexual assault of a child. He was given the final sentence of life in prison without the possibility of parole.

Documentary about Warren Steed Jeffs and FLDS

Prison Life

Warren is currently being held in the Texas Department of Criminal Justice – Louis C. Powledge Unit. Since his arrest, he has went on several hunger strikes and even was hospitalized for a medical induced coma which was due to his excessive fasting. Believe it or not, Warren still controls the FLDS church even while he is behind walls. His followers still believe he is the prophet and still live according to his prophecy.

Warren Jeffs in prison
Warren Jeffs in prison
Crime, Bizarre
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