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State gets custody of 416 children for 60 days

SAN ANGELO -- A state district judge ruled at 7:30 p.m. Friday that the state will keep temporary custody of 416 children that were taken from a polygamous sect's West Texas compound.

After a second marathon day of testimony, state District Judge Barbara Walther ruled that the state will maintain temporary custody of the children for 60 days.

A child psychiatrist testified Friday that the children at the YFZ Ranch live in a "destructive environment" that encourages the sexual assault of young girls.

Child psychiartrist Bruce Perry said it will be difficult to break the cycle because it is ingrained in the sect's culture.

"Part of what they do is very destructive," said Perry who added it would be difficult to recommend an ideal solution for the children.

"This is just a lose-lose deal. There is no great way to make this deal come out."

State Child Protecative Services investigator Angie Voss testified that there were more than 20 girls among the children that were pregnant or had young children.

"This is culture of young women being pregnant by older men," Voss said.

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