19 Jun 2008

Murder trial begins for FLDS 'Lost Boy'

ABC 4 News, Utah - June 17, 2008

reported by Susan Wood

WEST JORDAN, Utah (ABC 4 News) - A young man raised in the FLDS community is now on trial for murder.

Parley Jeffs Dutson is one of the so-called "Lost Boys," exiled as a teen from the polygamous community. Now he is on trial for his former girlfriend's murder.

In court on Tuesday, disturbing details were released about what happened at a party last April where 15-year-old Kara Hopkins was shot after allegedly refusing sex.

Sometime around 2:30 a.m. on April 7, 2007, a seasoned security guard and his partner found a scene that still brings him to tears.

On the witness stand today, guard Cody Cross recounted seeing Dutson kneeling between the legs of the injured girl. She was lying nearly naked and struggling for air after a single gunshot from behind.

Cross said Dutson chanted as he hovered over her. Sometimes the words were unintelligible, but other times, they were very clear and included profanities and threats.

Cross said Dutson wouldn't follow commands and police ended up carrying him out of the apartment. Officials tried to revive Hopkins, but her injury was too severe.

In court, family and friends heard the horrific details, often gasping or shaking their heads in disgust.

Tuesday was the first day of Dutson's trial on sexual assault and murder charges. Eyewitnesses from the party are expected to testify that Dutson was high on mushrooms when he tried to force Hopkins into sex.

Dutson's attorney would not make any comment outside the courtroom today, but he has stated before that Dutson loved Hopkins and this wouldn't have happened if he hadn't taken the drugs.

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