Winston Blackmore

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Winston Blackmore is the leader of a polygamous Mormon fundamentalist group in Canada.

Bishop and excommunication[edit]

For two decades, Blackmore was the bishop of the Bountiful, British Columbia, group of the Fundamentalist Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints (FLDS Church), a polygamist community in the Creston Valley. In September 2002, FLDS Church president Warren Jeffs excommunicated him.[1][2] The community of Bountiful was split nearly in half—about 400 people followed Blackmore, with the rest following Jeffs.[2] Blackmore would go on to found the Church of Jesus Christ (Original Doctrine) Inc.[3]

Canadian polygamy case[edit]

Blackmore and another community leader, James Oler, were arrested by the Royal Canadian Mounted Police in January 2009 and charged with polygamy.[4] The charges were thrown out later, owing to questions about how the Crown selected its prosecutors.[4]

The case was reopened by the provincial government in 2014, with the B.C. Supreme Court confirming that polygamy is against the law in a constitutional case.[5] Blackmore's lawyers attempted to appeal the case, which was overruled in May 2016. No date has yet been set for Blackmore's trial.[6]


As of August 1st, 2016, Blackmore has married 27 times and has over 145 children[7][8]

He is the nephew of former Social Credit Party of Canada leader John Horne Blackmore who, though not a polygamist himself, was excommunicated by The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints in 1947 for "teaching and advocating the doctrine of plural marriage". As an MP, the elder Blackmore urged Parliament to repeal the anti-polygamy law and succeeded in removing specific references to Mormons that had been in the law.[citation needed]

Blackmore is also related to anti-polygamy activists Carolyn Jessop, a former FLDS member and author, and Ruby Jessop.[9]


  1. ^ Canadian Press, "Court rules against B.C. polygamous leader Winston Blackmore, issues $150,000 in penalties", National Post, 28 August 2013.
  2. ^ a b Canadian Press, "Polygamous family deemed unworthy of special tax status", CBC News, 4 May 2012.
  3. ^ "LDS Church wins, Canadian polygamist loses in fight for 'Mormon' name". Salt Lake Tribune. 14 January 2015. Retrieved 19 January 2015. Finally giving up the fight, Blackmore has agreed to change his group's corporate name to "the Church of Jesus Christ (Original Doctrine) Inc. 
  4. ^ a b The Canadian Press (August 11, 2011). "B.C. polygamy evidence helps Warren Jeffs conviction". Retrieved 2012-02-25. 
  5. ^ Fraser, Keith. "Accused polygamist Winston Blackmore loses court appeal". The Province. Retrieved 10 August 2016. 
  6. ^ "Winston Blackmore loses appeal to have polygamy charge tossed". Toronto Sun. June 1, 2016. Retrieved 10 August 2016.  |first1= missing |last1= in Authors list (help)
  7. ^ (June 30, 2009). "B.C. polygamist wedded nine girls under 18". CTV BC. Retrieved 2009-06-30. 
  8. ^
  9. ^ Bramham, Daphne. "Escape from Polygamy". The Secret World of Polygamy. Vancouver Sun. Retrieved 2013-07-20.