Warren Jeffs has been behind bars since 2007, and now one of his ex-wives is speaking out about her experience with Jeffs and within the Fundamentalist Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints.
Rebecca Musser became one of Warren's 19 wives after being forced to marry his father, Rulon Jeffs, according to her account in "The Witness Wore Red," her memoir of life within the organization. Jeffs was the one-time leader of the FLDS but was arrested and convicted in 2007 of several charges, including sexual conduct with minors, incest, and the rape of two young women.
Musser was repeatedly abused by Rulon, who was years older than her and already had 65 wives by the time she joined his "family."
"There were things he did to me sexually, that if I said no he was extremely upset. He said, 'Fine, but you'll be damned.' I didn't want it," Musser wrote of the marriage, "but rejecting that 'blessing,' would have brought tremendous shame to my family."
When Rulon died, she was ordered to marry Warren, who warned that he would "break" her and "train" her to be an "obedient wife," according to the book. Musser decided to make a break for her life in 2002 and testified in 11 different trials across three states, helping to put several FLDS leaders behind bars.
Since then, Musser has worked to help other women and children leave the organization if they so choose. She started the Claim Red foundation, choosing the name of the color forbidden in the FLDS.
"Believe in the possible," Musser said on the Claim Red website. "You may not have all the answers to your predicament, but you DO have the ability to rise above it. Regardless of the situation you are in, you can find a productive way out. I know this, because I not only survived tyranny – I overcame it. It is possible to be victorious over challenges."
"The Witness Wore Red: The 19th Wife Who Brought Polygamous Cult Leaders to Justice" is available on Amazon.com and BarnesandNoble.com.