COLORADO CITY, Arizona, Sept. 15, 2022 (Gephardt Daily) — A newly unsealed indictment reveals a Colorado City man faces multiple federal charges after a search warrant was served his residence, just south of the Utah border.
Charged is Samuel Rappylee Bateman, 46 and widely reported to be the leader of a splinter group of the Fundamentalist Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints, known for practicing polygamy.
Bateman is facing three charges of destroying or attempting to destroy records “with the intent to impair its integrity and availability for use in a foreseeable criminal proceeding,” says the indictment filed in the case.
Court records previously sealed indicate the investigation is related to “a ‘child’ younger than 18 years of age who is alleged to be a victim of a crime of physical abuse, sexual abuse or exploitation, or a witness to a crime committed against another person.”
According to KDXU news radio, based in St. George, Bateman was arrested for child abuse weeks ago in Flagstaff, Arizona, after someone alerted police dispatch to multiple children being transported in a locked cargo trailer.
Gephardt Daily will have additional information on this case as it develops.