John Cradlebaugh's letter giving his reasons for dismissing the Grand Jury.

Apr 4, 1859
John Cradlebaugh

John Cradlebaugh, Explanation of Grand Jury Dismissal, April 4, 1859, Second District Court Minute Book C, April 4, 1859, 166-67, series 5319, Utah State Archives

John Cradlebaugh
John Cradlebaugh

The Court made the following entry: This Court has sought diligently and faithfully to do its duty, to administer the laws of the United States and of this Territory. It could not have any other object. But at every turn it has had to encounter difficulties and embarrassments. Men high in authority in the Mormon church as well as man holding Civil authority under the Territorial Government seem to have conspired to obstruct the course of public justice and to cripple the earnest efforts of this Court. The whole Community presents a united and organized opposition to the proper administration of justice, every art and every expedient have been employed to cover up and conceal crimes committed by Mormons. Witnesses have been prevented by threats of violence from obeying the summons of this Court, others that have testified have been driven to seek safety in the protection of the United States Troops stationed near here—who I is proper to say are here on the requisition of the court, and for whose presence the Court is responsible. The absolute necessity of having these Troops here has been fully demonstrated by all that has transpired during the session of the Court. To crown all, the Grand Jury sworn to perform a high public duty has lent itself as a willing instrument to this organized opposition to the laws of the country and refused to meet its obligations. A most willing inclination has been manifested to prosecute Indians and other persons not Mormons, for their offences, while Mormon murderers and thieves are allowed to go unpunished. This court determined as its action manifests—that it will not be used by this Community for its protecting alone, but that it will do justice to all, or it will do nothing. Not being able to do this, the Court adjourns without day.

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