Reformed polygamist expresses regret for 1988 standoff

July 9, 2013 at 5:04 PM
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SALT LAKE CITY, July 9 (UPI) -- A Utah man who served 25 years for killing a corrections officer at a polygamist compound standoff now says he realizes the error of his ways.

Addam Swapp, 52, the central figure in a 1988 bombing and standoff with law enforcement, served 25-and-a-half years in prison for his role in the incident. He was returned to Utah Friday and released on parole Tuesday, the Salt Lake Tribune said.

Swapp expressed remorse at a parole hearing, telling parole board members he's changed his religious beliefs, which at the time of the crime were tailored to a strict reading of the Old Testament.

"What I've come to learn is that how I acted was completely wrong," Swapp said. "I should not have done what I did. If I could go back and redo it, I certainly would."

Swapp blew up a Mormon church in Utah after he said he had a religious awakening to bring down the LDS Church and resurrect his father-in-law, John Singer, who was killed by police during a standoff in 1979.

Swapp married one of Singer's daughters and after blowing up the church retreated to a polygamist compound where a 13-day standoff ensued. Swapp didn't shoot the corrections officer who approached the compound to let out police dogs but said he recognizes now it was his actions that led to the officer's death.

Swapp served 17 years on federal charges of destruction by explosive and attempting to kill a federal officer. He completed that sentence in 2006 then began serving a one to 15 year state prison term for a manslaughter conviction. He eventually would serve six-and-a-half years of that sentence prior to his parole, the Tribune said.

Parole board members cited a statement from Ann House, widow of corrections Lt. Fred House who was killed in the standoff, wherein she accepted Swapp's apology. House told her lawyer to inform the parole board she now believes Swapp is genuinely sorry and has served enough time in prison to account for his role in the incident.

At Swapp's last parole hearing in 2007, House told the board she did not favor his release.

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