Polygamous town businesses named in civil rights lawsuits

PHOENIX (AP) — Arizona’s attorney general has filed civil rights lawsuits against two businesses that refused to serve residents who don’t belong to the Fundamentalist Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints.

Big Dan’s Drive Thru restaurant and the Vermillion Candy Shoppe are in Colorado City, Arizona — just across the state line from Hildale, Utah.

The businesses owners are named in the lawsuits filed today in Maricopa County Superior Court.

Both men are FLDS members.

Relationships between members of that church and non-members have become increasingly strained over the past few years.

Authorities in Utah and Arizona have been focusing more on the community’s religious practice of plural marriages involving underage girls.

The church is controlled by Warren Jeffs, who is currently in jail awaiting a trial on charges of rape as an accomplice for allegedly forcing a marriage between a 14-year-old girl and her 19-year-old cousin.

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Religion News Blog posted this on Friday June 15, 2007.
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