Warren Jeffs is the president of the Fundamentalist Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints (FLDS Church). As a leader of the polygamist sect, Jeffs is considered a holy prophet and is believed to have married approximately 78 wives, according to CNN. Through his role at the church, he reassigned women to different men and used his religion to instruct them about sex and relationships.
In 2011, the 62-year-old was convicted of sexual assaulting his “child brides." He is serving a life sentence, plus 20 years, after once being on the FBI's "Most Wanted" list. Oxygen unveils details about the secretive community of Jeffs' family and followers in "Abuse of Power," which airs Saturday, May 19 at 7/6c.
But since Jeffs' incarceration, many have wondered what happened to the dozens of women who were married to him.
Some women left the FLDS and have spoken out about their experiences. Following Jeffs' conviction, his 65th wife got the keys to a property he once owned and used in Colorado City, Arizona. Brielle Decker decided to turn the 3-acre property into a refuge for The Dream Center, a global nonprofit that transforms buildings into shelters, reported 12 News. In May 2017, the former wife gave Fox 10 Phoenix a tour of the home she used to reside in with Jeffs.
"I was the 65th wife of Warren Jeffs," she explained. Decker called Jeffs a "pedophile" and noted that she didn't think he "was really that interested" in her because she wasn't very young when they united. She claimed the marriage was never consummated.
Mildred "Millie" Blackmore was just 13 years old when she married Jeffs in 2004. Canadian authorities tried to locate her years later, and according to her brother, she had returned to her native polygamous community in Canada. He told The Salt Lake Tribune that she appeared to be loyal to Jeffs as of November 2016. Authorities were also searching for Canadian natives Alyshia Rae Blackmore and Nolita Colleen Blackmore, who both married Jeffs when they were 12.
For the people who have remained at the compound, a bitter divide arose over property rights in Short Creek between FLDS believers and those who have left the church, so-called "apostates." In December 2017, an agreement was reached after 12 years in which the polygamists can stay in homes formerly owned by a church land trust, reported The Salt Lake Tribune.
Then there are the women who have chosen to stand by Jeffs — and even help him behind bars. Two wives were caught by authorities in Texas prison trying to sneak contraband to Jeffs, including a small microphone hidden inside a hollowed-out watch, according to Deseret News.
To learn more about Warren Jeffs, watch "Abuse of Power" on May 19 at 7/6c.
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