'Sister Wives' Stars Investigated; Felony Charges Possible

VIDEO: Utah man accused of bigamy is the star of the new TLC show, "Sister Wives."
Share
Copy

The polygamist family featured on TLC's "Sister Wives" is now being investigated for a possible charge of bigamy, a third-degree felony in Utah.

Police in Lehi, Utah said Monday that TLC's announcement of the show sparked the inquiry, and they have been checking on salesman Kody Brown and his four wives -- Meri, Christine, Janelle and Robyn -- before the show's premiere on Sunday, People.com reported.

The Browns recently sat down with ABC News' Dan Harris on "Nightline" for an intimate look inside the family's home and their lives as polygamists before the "Sister Wives" premiere.

When Harris asked the patriarch and his wives about the possibility that their controversial lifestyle might get them into legal trouble now that they've gone public, Brown admitted that the family had weighed that and all five agreed it was a risk.

"But what we'd rather say is, 'raising children in a closed society could cause a lot more damage than any kind of legal process,'" Brown's third wife, Christine, said.

"I would want my children to grow up and say, 'he's my dad, and this is my family," Robyn, the newest wife, chimed in.

Brown has 13 children and three stepchildren from his four marriages. Wives Meri, Christine and Janelle all live in the family's big house with their kids. Robyn lives in a smaller house nearby.

"We aren't saying this is for everybody," Brown's second wife, Janelle, said. "We don't even recommend it for anybody who's not interested."

Many Americans have seen polygamists portrayed as secret societies, with wives wearing prairie dresses, young girls being abused and church leaders, such as Warren Jeffs, standing trial.

The Brown family said they hope to reverse that negative view through their upcoming series.

"We have so many stereotypes and so much bad media about this lifestyle," Robyn said. "There's not abuse in our home … we don't have under-aged brides. We don't have all the other things that are actually very wrong and our children are happy."

Kody said he has been with his wives for 16 years and his unusual family grew out of love and his relationships are all based on his Mormon faith.

Kody Said He Sleeps in a Different Wife's Bed Each Night

"I just fell in love, and then I fell in love again, and then again," he explained. "My belief kind of pushed me in that direction. But in retrospect, I would go all the way back saying I do it for love because this is something that's come together out of love."

Whether the Brown's way of life is right or wrong, it doesn't come without its challenges at home: Providing and caring for such a large family on three incomes -- Kody and two of his wives work -- as well as inter-personal relationships.

Brown said he sleeps in a different wife's bed every night, and admitted that there are times when he questions his polygamist lifestyle.

"I have clothes everywhere so I kind of live in the whole house," he said. "I'll shower here and then I'll have to run upstairs twice to get clothes that I can't find."

"He's very unselfish," Janelle added. "He's always giving to the kids or to the wives."

The wives said there are some upsides to being in this kind of relationship. Their kids share toys and chores, and the wives said they have peace of mind knowing that someone is always there to look after them.

"Having the support system of each other, as we work together, it just makes each of us better," one of the wives said.

Page
  • 1
  • |
  • 2
Join the Discussion
You are using an outdated version of Internet Explorer. Please click here to upgrade your browser in order to comment.
blog comments powered by Disqus
 
You Might Also Like...