Trials set for remaining Colorado City polygamists

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KINGMAN – Tuesday’s sentencing for a Colorado City polygamist charged with having sexual relations with an underage girl has been delayed indefinitely.

Vergel Bryce Jessop, 47, pleaded no contest Dec. 18 to an undesignated charge of child abuse.

He had been charged with sexual conduct with a minor and conspiracy to commit sexual conduct with a minor.

Jessop and seven other codefendants who face charges in Mohave County Superior Court belong to a controversial polygamist sect of the Fundamentalist Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints in Colorado City.

No new sentencing date has been set for Jessop.

Under the plea agreement, Jessop will be sentenced to probation for three years with no additional jail time. If he completes his probation, the felony charge will be designated as a misdemeanor. Judge Steven Conn will also decide if Jessop must register as a sex offender.

FLDS

The FLDS is also considered to be a cult of Christianity. Sociologically,the group is a high-control cult.

A bench trial before Conn was also set for Jan. 30 for Jessop’s codefendant, Randolph Barlow, 33, who is charged with two counts of sexual conduct with a minor. A bench trial is where a judge not a jury decides whether a defendant is guilty or not guilty.


Dale Evans Barlow’s trial also before Conn has been set for Feb. 14. Barlow, 49, is charged with one count of sexual conduct with a minor and one count of conspiracy to commit sexual conduct with a minor.

Rodney Holm’s trial also before Conn was previously postponed with no new date scheduled. Holm, 40, a former Colorado City police officer, is charged with three counts of sexual conduct with a minor.

David Romaine Bateman, 49, was convicted in October of sexual conduct with a minor and conspiracy to commit sexual conduct with a minor. Judge James Chavez sentenced him Dec. 18 to nine months in state prison and must register as a sex offender.

Charges against Terry Darger Barlow were dropped in October. Barlow, 25, was charged with one count of sexual conduct with a minor and conspiracy to commit sexual conduct with a minor.

Kelly Fischer, 39, was the first codefendant to be tried and convicted of sexual conduct with a minor and conspiracy to commit sexual conduct with a minor. He was sentenced in August to 45 days in county jail and probation.

In September, a Mohave County jury acquitted Donald Robert Barlow, 50, of one count of sexual conduct with a minor.

The church’s leader, Warren Jeffs currently faces rape charges in Utah. He is also charged in Mohave County with three counts of sexual conduct with a minor.

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Source

(Listed if other than Religion News Blog)
The Daily News, USA
Jan. 15, 2007
Jim Seckler
www.mohavedailynews.com

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This post was last updated: Jan. 16, 2007