[REGIONAL NEWS] Polygamy would be on par with a traffic ticket under pitch to Utah legislators

Polygamists and their supporters assembled at City Creek Park prior to their march to the Capitol where they held a rally in 2017./ Scott Sommerdorf / The Salt Lake Tribune

By Nate Carlisle | Salt Lake Tribune

Utah’s long dance with plural marriage is poised for another tango as a state senator seeks support to greatly reduce the penalties for polygamy while making it easier to pursue the worst polygamists.

Sen. Deidre Henderson, R-Spanish Fork, plans to file a bill in the 2020 legislative session, which begins in January.

She declined to discuss specifics, saying the text is still being negotiated. But she said the measure would encourage people in plural families to report frauds and abuse without fear of being prosecuted for polygamy itself.

“The general intent behind it,” Henderson said, “is to make sure we are not continuing to create a situation where the victims and witnesses of crimes are afraid to report it because of the lifestyle that they’ve lived.”


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September 2019