Where is Merrianne Jessop Now? All About Warren Jeffs’ Spouse

By Cannon | Published on: March 19, 2024 | Updated on: March 19, 2024
Facts checked by editors at A-List Arena
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Merrianne Jessop is one of 78 wives of now-imprisoned polygamist Warren Jeffs, the president of the Fundamentalist Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints (FLDS Church). He reportedly had over 75 wives, including 24 underaged girls when the notorious polygamy leader was sentenced to life in prison in 2011.

Thus, how old was Merrianne when the girl was married to Warren? Was Jessop the youngest wife of Jeffs? Also, know Merrianne’s current whereabouts after her polygamist husband Jeffs’ imprisonment, her age, mother, and more.

So, let’s take a look at the following article to know every minor and major detail about her!

What is Age? Details on Her Mother

Jessop is 28 years old in 2023. She was born in 1994, in the United States of America. She is an American by her nationality and has a Caucasian ethnicity.

Talking about her parents, Jessop is the daughter of Merril Jessop (father) and Barbara Jessop (mother). Her father was a one-time overseer of the YFZ Ranch and presiding bishop of the Fundamentalist Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints. He married several women before his death in Feb 2022 and had about 54 children including Merrianne.

Father Merril Performed a Prohibited Marriage Between His Daughter and Warren Jeffs

Merrianne’s father Merrill was the one who conducted his daughter’s marriage with one of the biggest polygamy leaders Warren Jeffs. The two exchanged their vows in July 2006. And their ritual wedding ceremony which was performed by Merril was held at the YFZ Ranch, a 1,700-acre Fundamentalist Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints community in Schleicher County, Texas. The huge property was later seized by the State of Texas in 2014.

Merrianne Jessop is the wife of Warren
Warren Jeffs’ spouse Merrianne Jessop.

Besides, there has also been huge curiosity about how old was Merrianne at the time of her marriage to Jeffs. In fact, Jessop was merely 12 years old when the girl was married to the polygamist. And Jeffs was 50 years old at that time.

Was Merrianne The Youngest Wives of Warren Jeffs?

Since her age was only 12 at the time of her nuptial with Warren, people wonder to know if Merrianne was one of Warren’s youngest wives. As it turns out, Jessop was one of the youngest spouses of Warren along with two other minors-Nolita Collen Blackmore and Alyshia Rae Blackmore. Both of them were 12 years old when they married Jeffs.

Nolita and Alyshia tied the knot with Jeffs at the Yearning for Zion ranch a year before Jessop’s marriage with the religious leader in December 2005.

Underage Mairrgae With Warren Played a Crucial Role in His Life Imprisonment

One of the most infamous polygamist leaders, Warren Jeffs has been serving life imprisonment since 2011 and his case of child abuse and underaged marriages were the most-talked topics in media history. He took over the charge of the Fundamentalist Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints following his father Rulon Jeffs’ death in 2002.

Since then, Jeffs did involve in several horrifying misdemeanors including marrying and raping minors, sexually assaulting children, and more. Based on the misdeed of a polygamist cult leader, the TV series Preaching Evil: A Wife on the Run With Warren Jeffs was also released in April 2022.

Although Jeffs started involving in the above-mentioned inappropriate acts in 2003, the FLDS leader was only given life imprisonment in August 2011. He was convicted of rape and two charges of sexual assault against a child. Most of his wrongdoings reportedly took place at the YFZ Ranch, which was once run by Merrianne’s father Merril too.

And the extensive investigation of the YFZ Ranch, where Jeffs was sent several FLDS members began in 2008. The ranch was actually raided by the authorities after a local domestic abuse hotline received a call about the sexual abuse of a sixteen-year-old FLDS member in 2008.

The tip regarding the sexual abuse of a child led to a massive investigation of the ranch. At the time, the Texas Department of Family and Protective Services had removed 437 children, including Merrianne from there

However, a few days after, a call to the abuse hotline turned out to be a hoax, leading the Texas Department of Family and Protective Services to return the kids to the ranch. In fact, it was a call from a woman in Colorado with a history of making a false report.

Merrianne and Jeffs
Jeffs, kissing the underage girl Merrianne.

Yet, the authorities didn’t stop investigating and they eventually found evidence including photographs, marriage certificates, and more.

Later on, it came to know that Merrianne (who was 12 years old at the time of her marriage) and other teenage Veda Keate were still taken by Warren in a “celestial marriage.” Veda was 14 years old when the girl married Jeffs.

When the authorities raided the ranch, Veda had already become a mother of a child. A DNA test then proved Warren to be a biological father of a child.

Jessop Said Marrying Warren Wasn’t A Crime

As said above, Merrianne’s illicit marriage with Jeffs played a huge role to prove the FLDS president to be guilty of all charges. But, amidst the investigation, Jessop told caseworkers that her nuptial couldn’t have been a crime, instead, these marriages were pure. She said,

“Heavenly Father is the one that tells Warren when a girl is ready to get married… He is only following the word of Heavenly Father.”

An Audiotape of Warren Having Sexual Intercourse With Merrianne

The solid evidence the authorities ever found in Warren’s case was a 14-minute audiotape of sexually assaulting Merrianne just weeks after her 12th birthday. He also had a group sex session with “at least a dozen underage girls,” as per the San Angelo lawyer Carmen Dusek.

Merrianne later told the investigators the girl had forceful sex with Jeffs on a ceremonial bed after their marriage. At the time, several other Warren’s wives also witnessed them having sexual intercourse.

Where is Now? Her Life After Warren’s Life Imprisonment

Since Jeffs was sentenced to life in prison, the current whereabouts of his wives are hard to locate. Merrianne was once reported to be living in foster care for a year. After living there, the girl never showed any desire to go back to her home but once asked Dusek to go with her foster family to Tennessee for Thanksgiving.

However, her request to go to Tennessee was turned down by the judge but later Jessop went there for the holiday.

As soon as her case was resolved, one of her cousins took over Merrianne’s guardianship. But, by August 2009, Jessop had gone back to the YFZ Ranch, in Texas. Since it has been her last known location, many still believe Merrianne now lives there.

Merrianne’s Sister Naomi Jessop Was Believed to Be One of Warren Jeffs’ Favorite Spouses

Merrianne’s sister Naomi was also one of Warren’s wives. She was thought to be his favorite wife too. In total, Jeffs reportedly did have about 78 wives including 24 minors.

Warren Jeffs spouses
Warren wives.

Some of Warren Jeffs’ other known spouses include Millie Blackmore, Annie Mae Blackmore, Alyshia, and Nolita Blackmore. All of them were taken from Canada to be married to Warren. Millie was only 13 years old at the time of her marriage to the religious cult leader.

Quick Facts About

  • She is 28 years old in 2023.
  • Born in the U.S., Merrianne married Warren Jeffs at the age of 12, making her the youngest spouse with a few others.
  • Her sister Naomi was also one of Jeffs’ wives.
  • Her father Merril conducted her wedding ceremony with Warren at the ranch.