Father kidnapped his 4 children, joined polygamous doomsday cult

Father kidnapped his 4 children, joined polygamous doomsday cult

The disappearance touched off a desperate search by Coltharp's ex-wife that culminated in an Amber Alert for the two girls and the arrests of both men on suspicion of kidnapping and other charges.

Self-proclaimed cult leader Samuel Shaffer, who was believed to have been given the children by their father, has been taken into custody by the sheriff's department in Iron County, Utah, in connection with the incident.

Authorities believe the girls may be with Shaffer because they are betrothed to him for marriage.

Coltharp, is now in Sanpete County Jail on charges of kidnapping and obstruction of justice. The two boys, ages 6 and 7, were found on Monday.

They said it appeared to be used for storage, not for a residence.

"They are with a man that calls himself Samuel 'The Seer, '" the children's mother said. Four-year-old Hatti and 8-year-old Dina had been placed in the custody of their mother, Micha Coltharp, following a recent divorce.

According to the latest news release, on Friday, Dec. 1, the Iron County Sheriff's Office received court documents from Micha Coltharp regarding her four biological children.

Ray anxious her nieces were being hidden so they could be placed in a marriage at an early age.

Deputies found the grandparents about a mile west of Lund, Utah, at their "makeshift residence" constructed out of shipping containers.

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The boys were found during a raid of a suspected polygamist compound and had been living in a restored storage shed with just one window. Deputies made a traffic stop and made contact with Keith Coltharp.

Officials took him into custody and he told them where they could find the four young girls. Another Coltharp daughter and another Shaffer daughter were found in an abandoned trailer.

Singular credits the police response and Amber Alert with potentially saving the girls' lives.

Authorities later found Shaffer walking along a dirt road several miles west of the property. Shaffer said they had been put in the barrels to hide them from law enforcement. These two children were not properly dressed for the cold temperatures and did not have food or water at that time.

Shaffer also admitted he left a firearm on the ground next to the barrels.

He was confronted by police, but refused to say where the children were even after he was arrested. Approximately 20 law officers began a search for Samantha and Dinah.

Court documents state those two girls were found "in poor health with signs of dehydration and acting lethargic".

All four girls were brought to the command center to be checked by medical personnel.

The youngest girl, one of Shaffer's daughters, was flown to Primary Children's Hospital in unknown condition. Her condition was not immediately available.

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