- Associated Press - Tuesday, April 26, 2016

SALT LAKE CITY (AP) - The polygamous family from the TV show “Sister Wives” is asking an appeals court to re-consider a decision that upheld Utah’s law banning bigamy.

Kody Brown and his four wives argue the ban violates their constitutional rights and wrongly makes families like theirs into criminals. They sued and won a ruling that struck down key parts of the state’s polygamy law in 2013, but the appeals court threw out the case earlier this month.

A three-judge panel of the 10th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in Denver decided the Browns can’t challenge the ban in court because they never faced criminal charges.

The polygamous family pushed back against that ruling in court documents filed Monday, arguing that the threat of prosecution forced them to flee to Nevada and still hangs over their heads when they go home. Police investigated after their show premiered in 2010, but the case was closed without filing charges.

Attorney Jonathan Turley argued that keeping polygamy illegal allows authorities to target plural families and search their homes with less proof than monogamous ones.

The Browns are asking the 12 judges on the full appeals court to re-consider dismissing case. There’s no deadline for them to decide.

A spokesman for Utah Attorney General Sean Reyes didn’t immediately return messages seeking comment Tuesday. Reyes has pledged to leave polygamists alone unless they break other laws, but says the state still needs the ban to go after polygamists like Warren Jeffs, who is in prison for sexually assaulting girls he considered wives.

The Browns say it’s wrong to paint all plural marriages with the same brush, and that their reality show is evidence that polygamous unions can be just as healthy as monogamous ones.

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