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The Polygamy Blog
Nate Carlisle
Reporter Nate Carlisle and photographer Trent Nelson cover polygamy for The Salt Lake Tribune. You can follow the Polygamy Blog on Twitter at @tribunepolygamy. Follow Nate Carlisle on Twitter at @natecarlisle. Follow Trent Nelson on Twitter at @trenthead.

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Here are the hardships the Cookes endured while they didn’t have utilities

The question in the Cooke case revolves around why the Short Creek family never received a water hook up at their home. Was it because they were being discriminated against? Or because they were looking for a reason to sue Colorado City and Hildale?

The jury will ultimately decide what was going on.

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But regardless of the reasons, the lack of utilities sounds like it was awful. More about this will likely come out during the course of the trial, but after just one day in court, here are some of the things their lawyers and Isaac Wyler have said they experienced:

• Hauling their water to the their house and storing it in a moldy tank in their yard.

• Freezing pipes in the winter. The pipes from their water tank to their home are exposed, so in the winter they freeze solid. As a result, Jinjer Cooke has to dismantle them, take them to a friends house and run them under hot water to thaw them out.

• Vandals have broken the family’s pipes.

• "This is a family that for over two years had to haul their own human excrement away," their attorney Bill Walker said.

• Ronald Cooke, who is disabled, has been unable to take care of his wounds.

• The family, which includes both parents and three kids, had to live in a trailer through their first winter in the area.

— Jim Dalrymple II

Twitter: @jimmycdii

Copyright 2014 The Salt Lake Tribune. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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