One of probably the most harrowing true-crime documentaries to hit Netflix this year is Rachel Dretzin’s “Keep Sweet: Pray and Obey.” The doc focuses on cult chief Warren Jeffs and people who survived his chilling reign within the Fundamentalist Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints (FLDS). “Keep Sweet” covers heavy materials, as Jeffs’s rule was marked by rampant manipulation and sexual abuse. Jeffs was ultimately convicted on costs of sexual assault and sentenced to life in jail, however what has occurred to him since his sentencing? Here’s what you want to learn about his whereabouts as we speak.
Who Was Warren Jeffs?
Located in Hildale, UT, and Colorado City, AZ, the Fundamentalist Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints is a radical polygamist sect that broke off from the Mormon Church a few century in the past, per ABC News. Jeffs formally turned the chief of the FLDS when his father, Rulon Jeffs, died in 2002.
Jeffs, who offered himself because the FLDS prophet, resided on a 28,000-square-foot compound in Hildale the place he had 79 “sister-wives,” per Inside Edition. Within the ranch, which served because the FLDS headquarters, wives have been compelled to take part in group actions, similar to praying each hour, whereas Jeffs married and facilitated marriages throughout the group.
According to considered one of Jeffs’s sermons, FLDS wives have been supposed to obey their husbands and have kids. Horrifyingly sufficient, many former members have claimed that they have been compelled to marry of their teenagers. Jeffs himself had not less than 24 wives below the age of 17 per Church records. According to a report from NBC, Church dissidents claimed that the variety of underage marriages skyrocketed to tons of throughout his rule.
Life within the FLDS group was largely disconnected from the skin world. Entertainment sources, similar to TV and the web, have been strictly banned. Women have been additionally compelled to develop out their hair and put on prairie clothes. Young members have been even supposedly taught that Jeffs was the president of the United States.
A number of years after formally assuming his place of energy within the FLDS, Jeffs was placed on the FBI’s Most Wanted record in May 2006. In August 2006, he was arrested and confronted sexual-misconduct costs for facilitating marriages between underage women and older males.
Where Is Warren Jeffs Now?
Per NPR, Jeffs was convicted in Utah in 2007, however the conviction was later reversed due to a court docket error. He was then convicted of sexually assaulting two women he claimed have been his “non secular wives.” In 2011, he was sentenced to life in jail. But Jeffs wasn’t the one member of the Church convicted, as there have been seven others from the ranch convicted of sexual assault, bigamy, and different costs.
While in jail, Jeffs printed a e-book known as “Jesus Christ Message to All Nations” in 2012. In 2017, a lady sued Jeffs and an FLDS group belief for damages, alleging that she was abused as a baby. However, the group belief’s legal professionals stated in 2019 that Jeffs had not too long ago had a psychological breakdown and was not match for court docket, per AP News.
Jeffs, now 66, nonetheless has supporters within the FLDS group who see him as the religion’s prophet, however the Church itself has misplaced many members since his arrest. He’s now imprisoned on the Texas Department of Criminal Justice’s Louis C. Powledge Unit in Palestine, TX. Over the years, there was suspicion that he is continued to direct group actions even from jail. According to AP News, his wives have been caught with microphones of their watches throughout visits. Jeffs can be eligible for parole in 2038.