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Arizona couple accuses polygamist church of cutting them off from utilities

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An Arizona couple is suing officials in two cities for allegedly cutting them off from basic utilities under orders of the polygamist Fundamentalist Church of of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints (FLDS), KUTV-TV reported on Friday.

Ron and Jinjer Cooke’s suit claims that they have been denied running water and electricity after moving to Colorado City, Arizona. The nearby town of Hilldale, Utah, is also named in the suit. The trial begain in Phoenix, Arizona, this week.

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“We thought we lived in America, and then we moved here,” Ron Cooke told KUTV in January 2013. “This isn’t America right here.”

The Cookes argue that because they are not members of the FLDS, the Twin City Water Authority, which manages the water supply for both towns, did not give them a water hookup for their home, forcing them to refill a large water tank though weekly trips to a water plant. They also say they were denied electricity and sewage hookups because they were not in the church. Their living situation was complicated, the suit says, by the fact that Ron Cooke is disabled.

The Salt Lake Tribune reported that the Cookes’ attorneys said in court this week that the couple’s pipes were broken by vandals, forcing them to “haul their own human excrement away” for two years.

Jeff Matura, who is representing Colorado City in the case, told KUTV that the Cookes have been denied a water hookup because they will not follow a Twin City requirement that customers contribute as much water to the cities’ shared system as they use.

“The towns have said since 2008, ‘Hey, comply with our policy and we’ll hook you up, but if you don’t comply with the policy, we’re not going to hook you up,'” Matura told KUTV. Matura also denied the couple’s claim that the church exerts influence over city policy.

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However, the Tribune reported on Thursday that two witnesses testified that they conducted surveillance on orders of the church, with one of them, Keith Barlow, saying he was also assigned to monitor the Cookes and find information that the city could use to deny their requests for water.

“They moved into the community and they needed water,” Barlow was quoted as saying. “And we were watching them to somehow prevent them from getting water.”

Watch KUTV’s report, aired on Friday, below.

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Watergate’s John Dean thinks Trump wrote part of his legal team’s brief — because it’s so terrible

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Former White House counsel for Richard Nixon, John Dean, explained that the legal brief out of President Donald Trump's White House was so bad that it had to have been dictated by Trump himself.

Saturday evening, Trump's legal team, chaired by Trump lawyer Jay Sekulow and White House counsel Pat Cipollone, filed their own form of a legal brief that responded to the case filed by Democrats ahead of Tuesday's impeachment trial.

The document called the proceedings “constitutionally invalid” and claims House Democrats are staging a “dangerous attack” with a “brazen and unlawful attempt to overturn the results of the 2016 election and interfere with the 2020 election.”

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WATCH: Prince Harry explains why he and Meghan are leaving the royal family — but promises ‘a life of service’

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Prince Harry posted a video from an HIV/AIDS fundraiser his mother once supported, where he explained his methodology for leaving his profile role as a royal.

"I will continue to be the same man who holds his country dear," said Harry.

He went on to say that he doesn't intend to walk away and he certainly won't walk away from his causes and interests. "We intend to live a life of service."

In the speech, he thanked those who took him under their wing in the absence of his mother

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2 police dead after shootout in Diamond Head, Hawaii

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Two police officers are dead as a Sunday morning shootout is prompting lockdowns and an active-shooter situation in Diamond Head, outside of Honolulu.

The shooter allegedly started multiple fires that are burning residents in the area, reported CNN.

There is currently no information available about the identity of the shooter or confirmation that the shooter has been killed.

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