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Shutdown hampers civil rights case against polygamous towns

Published October 4, 2013 7:04 am

This is an archived article that was published on sltrib.com in 2013, and information in the article may be outdated. It is provided only for personal research purposes and may not be reprinted.

Add the U.S. Department of Justice lawsuit against Colorado City, Ariz., and Hildale, Utah, to the list of things affected by the government shutdown.

William Walker, a Tucson, Ariz., attorney representing the party that helped start the case, and Sandra Kane, an assistant U.S. attorney general in Phoenix, both replied in emails that depositions scheduled to be given next week were canceled.

Nationwide, many Department of Justice civil attorneys have been furloughed, thought it's not clear whether the lawyers handling the civil rights case in Hildale and Colorado City are off the job.

While the case has definitely slowed, it's unlikely to grind to a halt. Federal courts remain open.

The federal government is suing the towns, collectively known as Short Creek, claiming the elected and appointed officials, as well as police and utilities, discriminate against people who do not follow leaders of the Fundamentalist Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints.

— Nate Carlisle

Twitter: @tribunepolygamy