Alleged Polygamists Host Students

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AP, Aug. 9, 2002
Associated Press Writer

August 9, 2002, 4:39 PM EDT

SALT LAKE CITY — Two Japanese teenagers on an exchange program were inadvertently placed with a host family of alleged polygamists.

The volunteer coordinator of the summer exchange said if she had known they were polygamists she would have chosen a different family. Gwen Springmeyer has managed the exchange with Matsumoto, Japan, since 1978.

The situation has led Mayor Rocky Anderson to pledge better screening procedures for host families, mayoral spokesman Joshua Ewing said.

“It wouldn’t be appropriate to place visiting guests in the home of someone who was disobeying the law,” Ewing said.

Springmeyer first realized the host family might be polygamous from a reporter for the Salt Lake City Weekly.

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This post was last updated: Dec. 16, 2016