THE Brown family expressed apprehension in returning to their home state, for fear of being ARRESTED for their polygamist lifestyle.
The Sister Wives stars returned to Utah to visit another plural family on Sunday’s episode but were concerned they would face arrest by the police.
The Brown family worried they would be convicted upon reentering UtahCredit: Refer to Caption
The reality stars shared “worry” to return to a place where their “family is illegal”, but they pursued the trip in order to spend time with fellow polygamists Joe Darger and his three wives.
Joe, Vicki, Valerie, and Alina, were “very politically active for the cause of decriminalizing plural marriage in Utah,” Kody told viewers on the most recent episode.
Janelle conveyed her reservations about visiting the like-minded family, explaining: “I think for me, the biggest fear about going back into Utah, if we’re pulled over for a traffic violation, are they going to use it as an opportunity to tack on the felony polygamy charge?
Jenelle believed even a ‘traffic violation’ could put them at risk for arrestCredit: TLC
Christine explained that in Utah The Browns and The Dargers are all considered ‘felons’Credit: TLC
“Because that’s usually how it works — they get you for something else and then they add it on,” she said. “I’m always like, ‘Don’t speak, Kody, don’t speak.’ It’s dumb, but it is a real fear.”
Robyn added her own uneasiness: “If you can imagine, it’s like you’re going to a place where your family is illegal. It just feels oppressive. It always makes me worry,” she confessed.
“Polygamy right now in Utah is a felony. We’re sitting with fellow felons. We’re felons just like them. They could come in and arrest us all,” Christine also contributed.
Despite the family’s fears for heading back, they successfully made the trip and convened with the Dargers.
Despite their reservations, they still made the tripCredit: TLC
When meeting with fellow polygamists they felt better about the legislationCredit: TLC
When the Browns first went public with their marital decisions in 2011, Janelle remembered that “the police in Utah started to investigate us because plural marriage is a felony in Utah.
“It was punishable by up to five years per count.”
The family then abandoned their native state in the dead of the night, as they were afraid the police would “come and arrest” them.
“We felt like we’d been exiled,” she admitted.
The family moved to Las Vegas in 2011Credit: TLC
Kody and his family fought against the laws and were eventually ‘decriminalized’Credit: TLC
After moving to Las Vegas, Kody and his wives fought the legislation, and ended up winning for a year, claiming: “We were decriminalized.”
Shortly after “The state of Utah appealed our lawsuit that we had won. They overturned it and then they doubled-down with a new law, HB 99,” the father of 18 explained.
This new law “made it a worse felony for polygamists in Utah”, but in 2020 was countered by bill S.B. 102 which took the edge off punishment for polygamists.
“It basically makes it so that people like our family, who live a law-abiding life but just choose for religious purposes to cohabitate, we’re no longer felons,” Janelle expounded.
After a new bill was passed, the families were ‘no longer considered felons’Credit: TLC
Kody said that what happens in his ‘bedroom’ is ‘nobody else’s business’Credit: TLC
Kody then snapped about his privacy, adding: “What I do in my bedroom with another consenting adult is nobody’s else’s business.
“And so why do they think that they can legislate it? It’s naive.”
“Kody, because he has one legal wife and three plural wives, could go to jail from anywhere from nine to 15 years,” Janelle revealed.
“Then your probation involves not seeing your children, not recommitting the felony, so basically if you saw your children again, then you were violating probation. That took you into the federal system. It’s just a big mess.”
Season 15 of Sister Wives returns Sundays on TLC as the family battles their separation and lack of unity.
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