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FLDS building in South Dakota and Texas

Published September 1, 2011 6:34 pm

This is an archived article that was published on sltrib.com in 2011, and information in the article may be outdated. It is provided only for personal research purposes and may not be reprinted.

Members of the polygamous sect led by Warren Jeffs are busy with construction work at their remote ranches in both Texas and South Dakota. In Texas, new aerial photos of the Yearning for Zion Ranch show some kind of apparently tower-like structure going up at the approximately 1,700-acre property (pictured above). Interesting. Meanwhile, up north, FLDS members have been annoying their neighbors by working on construction projects around the clock at a ranch near Pringle, South Dakota, the Custer County Chronicle is reporting. It's not the first time. In this 2006 story, we reported that an FLDS man gave a neighbor a large wooden bench as an apology for construction lights and noise at the 140-acre site. Now, they're offering plates of cookies, according to the Chronicle. (Not sure which one is better. It's good to have a place to sit, but cookies sure are yummy.) The disagreement has apparently come to a head - the county commission is thinking about some kind of noise ordinance if they can't come to an agreement with the ranch's leader, Ben "Ed" Johnson. (The county sheriff there, by the way, was at the ranch on the day Jeffs was found guilty of sexual assault of a child in Texas, and seems to visit there pretty often, according to this story from the Rapid City Journal. The sheriff told the paper he hadn't seen any evidence of underage marriage).