Court Rules Texas Illegally Seized Polygamist Sect’s Children

SAN ANGELO, Texas (AP) — An appellate court decision upended the custody case that sent more than 440 children from a polygamist sect’s ranch into foster care, but it’s not clear whether the children might soon return home.

The Third Court of Appeals in Austin said the state failed to show the youngsters were in any immediate danger, the only grounds under Texas law for taking children from their parents without court action.

Texas District Judge Barbara Walther now has 10 days to release the youngsters from custody, but the state could appeal to the Texas Supreme Court and keep the children from immediately going back to their parents.

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