FLDS TRIALS: Appeal denied in child sex case

Court says sect member didn't pay fees, meet deadlines

San Angelo Standard Times, Texas/November 29, 2012

San Angelo, Texas - A member of a polygamist sect had his child sexual assault conviction appeal rejected after failing to pay fees, and meet deadlines and record requirements.

The Texas Third Court of Appeals dismissed the appeal when Keith William Dutson Jr., a member of the Fundamentalist Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints, didn't pay for records and make fee payments to the clerk and reporter.

"We informed appellant that his appeal may be dismissed for want of prosecution if he did not make arrangements for payment of the record and submit a status report regarding this appeal on or before October 22, 2012," the opinion released Thursday states.

Dutson, serving six years in prison in Colorado City after his November 2009 sentencing, had tried to apply for a free record, claiming indigence, but the court found him not indigent.

Dutson represented himself in presenting the appeal and the request for a free record. Counsel representing Dutson after that told the court that his counsel had explained to Dutson that the appeal could be dismissed for want of a necessary appellate record.

Such documents were never filed, the opinion states.

Dutson is one of 12 FLDS men indicted because of evidence gathered during a 2008 raid on the FLDS Yearning for Zion Ranch in Schleicher County, spurred by sexual assault allegations. He is one of 11 prosecuted for crimes including sexual assault of a child, bigamy and performing an illegal marriage.

Among those convicted was Warren Jeffs, FLDS leader and "prophet." He is serving a sentence of life plus 20 years in prison in Palestine for sexually assaulting a 12-year-old girl and a 15-year-old girl.

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