During the current season of the show, the family packed up and started moving to Flagstaff, Arizona, but according to Radar that could be the very thing that lands them behind bars.
The outlet spoke with some legal experts in the area, who provided some context for the state's laws and guidelines regarding polygamy.
"Polygamy is unlawful in Arizona," legal expert Monica Lindstrom told Radar. "Arizona's Constitution specifically addresses polygamy and states in Article 20, section 2, 'Polygamous or plural marriages, or polygamous co-habitation, are forever prohibited within this state.' Under Arizona's Constitution, living with one wife and a spiritual wife, or two or three etc., could meet the definition of 'polygamous co-habitation,' which is prohibited."
"Arizona defines marriage as 'the state of joining together as husband and wife through an agreement, promise or ceremony regardless of whether a marriage license has been issued by the appropriate authority,'" Lindstrom explained.
As fans are aware, Brown was legally married to his first wife, Meri, but then had ceremonies to celebrate his union with wives Janelle, Christine. He later divorced Meri so that he could legally marry his fourth wife Robyn and adopt her children from a previous relationship.
"'Spouses' is defined as two persons living together as husband and wife, including the assumption of those marital rights, duties and obligations that are usually manifested by married people, including but not necessarily dependent on sexual relations," Lindstrom went on to say. "These definitions arguably include 'spiritual' marriages which make what Kody Brown doing unlawful under Arizona law."
Notably, the family do all live in separate homes, but Dwane Cates of the Dwane Cates Law Group says that bigamy — which is defined as one person being married to two people at the same time — is still a class 5 felony anyway.
"He could get half a year to two-and-a-half years. He could get probation up to three years and $150,000 in fines," Cates said, then adding that Brown could potentially face up to four counts of bigamy — one for each wife — but explained that "It's up to the judge to decide."
Lindstrom then added that Meri, Janelle, Christine and Robyn could also be looking at charges as well.0comments
"It is a crime to marry the spouse of another person. If the second wife knew the husband was married to the first wife, then she has violated the law," Lindstrom stated. "Although they themselves are not technically married to more than one person, they have agreed to allow it and have agreed to facilitate it."
At this time, it is unknown if the Brown family is currently facing legal heat, but being in Arizona it is certainly a possibility.