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Utah ordered to provide records on polygamous town cops

Published July 16, 2014 3:31 pm

Ruling • Judge orders records to be given to the towns.
This is an archived article that was published on sltrib.com in 2014, and information in the article may be outdated. It is provided only for personal research purposes and may not be reprinted.

A federal judge has ordered the state of Utah to turn over files on police officers in twopolygamous towns.

Judge Robert Shelby also ordered an investigator at Utah Peace Officer Standards and Training to sit for a deposition as part of a civil rights lawsuit aimed at the towns of Hildale, Utah, and Colorado City, Ariz.

POST, as it's commonly known, regulates peace officers in Utah.

Scott Stephenson, the director of POST, on Wednesday said his office planned to comply with the order and not appeal.

Hildale and Colorado City are the home of the Fundamentalist Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints, whose tenets include polygamy. The marshals that police the two towns have police certifications in Utah and Arizona. The U.S. Department of Justice is suing the two town governments, claiming they discriminate against people who are not FLDS.

Lawyers for Hildale and Colorado City served a subpoena on POST seeking the files and to depose the POST investigator. POST asked Shelby to quash the subpoena, arguing Utah law protects the records from disclosure.

But in an order issued Monday, Shelby said the towns were entitled to the records.

In a related lawsuit in federal court in Phoenix, the Arizona Attorney General's Office has filed a motion asking a federal judge to disband the marshals office. A judge has not ruled on the motion.

ncarlisle@sltrib.com

Twitter: @natecarlisle