Warren Jeffs, the polygamist leader charged with the sexual assault of a child, is back in court on Monday after demanding Texas District Judge Barbara Walther be removed from the case on “God’s demand.”
The San Angelo, Texas, courtroom took a one hour recess to review and reject the motion filed against Walther by Jeffs. He said God saw her as “a woman of evil intent” and should not oversee his case.
The leader of the controversial Fundamentalist Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints (FLDS) said he received the message, delivered by God on Sunday. According to the Associated Press Jeffs wrote, "I am to now recuse you from this case. Now sign order to recuse thyself; and allow this proceeding to stop...”
Jeffs is accused of the sexual assault of two young girls, a 15-year-old and a 12-year-old child bride. The charges also include aggravated sexual assault of a minor.
DNA lab technician at the University of North Texas Laboratory, Amy Smuts testified that there is a 99.99996 percent chance that the 55-year-old man fathered a child with his 15-year-old wife.
Judge Walther is the judge who approved the raid on Jeffs’ quarters, which ultimately led to his arrest and the charges filed against him. This is the third time the polygamist leader has tried to have Walther’s removed from the case.
In his 16-page filing against Judge Walther, Jeffs listed 29 orders from the Lord, including one where God sent "a crippling disease upon (Walther) which shall take her life soon."
Accorded to the Associated Press, Walther contracted polio when she was younger and now walks with a limp.
Like the two cases before, the visiting judge rejected Jeffs’ claims against Walther and is allowing her to continue the trial. According to the new Texas Supreme Court ruling, immediate hearings to “recuse a judge” after evidence had been presented was not required anymore.
The new rules were in effect on Monday. According to Walther the hearing would be held later.
Jeffs is representing himself after firing his attorneys last week. He claims that his religious freedoms are being stomped out.
He said, "We are not a fly-by-night religious society. We are a community of faith and principles and those principles are so sacred. They belong to God, not to man and the governments of man."
Jeffs’ 10,000 followers across the United States believe he is a prophet who is God’s earthly spokesman.
Their teachings stress that polygamy is the key to glory in heaven, and young girls and women are to obey and serve their husbands "mind, body and soul" if they want to be saved in the afterlife.
Jeffs faces a separate trial for bigamy charges in October.