As County Attorney David Leavitt loses his race, new reports implicate him in an ongoing federal investigation into human trafficking. What does this mean for the Utah County Sheriff’s inquiry into “ritualized sexual abuse?”
Thirty days after announcing an investigation into “ritualized child sexual abuse,” the Utah County Sheriff’s Office continues to receive tips concerning organized sex rings and allegations of ritualistic rape and murder.
The investigation was originally made public on May 31st with a press release stating the UCSO is working with multiple county and federal agencies investigating reports of ritualistic child sexual abuse as far back as 1990. The Sheriff’s Office said the investigation began in April 2021. The investigation subsequently discovered previous reports alleging “similar forms of ritualistic sexual abuse and trafficking” that occurred in Utah County, Juab County, and Sanpete County during the time between 1990 and 2010.
While the UCSO has not publicly named a specific suspect in their investigation, one day after the investigation was announced Utah County Attorney David Leavitt held a press conference declaring that he was not a cannibal or a murderer. Leavitt shared a 151-page document titled “victim statement” related to a 2012 case involving allegations of sexual abuse of children. Leavitt and several other people are named in the statement as being involved with a group practicing ritual child sex abuse. He claimed the Sheriff’s investigation was a political attack on him related to the then-upcoming Utah primary.
While we have since learned the 2012 case against a therapist named David Lee Hamblin is related to the ongoing investigation on some level, we do not know how central the allegations against Hamblin — and the accusations against David Leavitt — are to the current UCSO investigation. We also learned that courtroom records reveal Leavitt lied when he said the 2012 case was dismissed by his predecessor because it was “unbelievable,” lacking evidence, and the story of a “tragically mentally ill” woman.
If the investigation was in any way politically motivated it appears to have been successful with David Leavitt losing his bid for reelection on Tuesday. Leavitt received 16,462 votes for 27% while challenger Jeff Gray received nearly 39,000 or 73% of the votes. Since there is no Democrat challenger, Jeff Gray will become the next Utah County Attorney in January 2023.
“I’m surprised by the decisiveness of it,” Leavitt said after seeing the votes come in on Tuesday. Leavitt also said this shows him that “say-anything-you-want-to-win-at-all-costs tactics work in Utah County.”
“I think the result is absolutely a result of the misinformation campaign against me not only over the last month, but the last six months,” Leavitt said. “And if the people of Utah County understood what we are trying to accomplish, it would have been a different result.”
An Improper Adoption or Human Trafficking?
On the day of the election Utah Fox affiliate FOX 13 reported that Leavitt may be implicated in an adoption scheme turned human-trafficking investigation. The FOX 13 Investigates team released a video of Utah County Attorney David Leavitt discussing how he used his political influence to work around laws regarding adopting Native American children. In the video Leavitt explains how he brokered a deal with the Northern Cheyenne Tribe in Montana by telling them he could strike a deal with Ukraine to import their buffalo.
Leavitt details how he struck the deal with the tribe leadership and was eventually able to convince the tribal authorities to allow the adoption. The little girl is now considered to be Leavitt’s step-foster-great niece.
FOX 13 reports that the video was recorded by a documentarian in 2020 and has since been submitted to Homeland Security Investigations as part of a criminal human trafficking investigation.
FOX 13 Investigates dropped another bombshell involving a Homeland Security Investigation against Leavitt. Noel Engels, a former analyst with Homeland Security Investigations, told FOX 13 Investigates that his team had been investigating sexual allegations against Leavitt for several years. Engels said his team had received the video about Leavvit and added it to the case file investigation on Leavitt on suspicion of human trafficking.
However, five months after receiving the video, Engels and his team were removed from the case. He filed a whistleblower complaint and received a letter from the United States Office of Special Counsel in response. The letter from attorney John U. Young states:
“You alleged that HSI improperly terminated an investigation into allegations involving current Utah County Attorney David O. Leavitt. We emphasize that, while (Office of Special Counsel) has found a substantial likelihood of wrongdoing based on the information you submitted in support of your allegations, our referral to the Secretary for investigation is not a final determination that the allegations are substantiated.
This remains an open matter under investigation until the agency’s final report is forwarded to the President and Congress.”
The reports by FOX 13 and the acknowledgement that David Leavitt is under investigation by Homeland Security Investigations on suspicion of human trafficking is just the latest in this unusual case.
What is David Leavitt’s Role?
Whether or not Leavitt is implicated in the broader Utah County Sheriff’s Office investigation into ritualized sexual abuse of children remains to be seen. We can confirm the following:
- David Leavitt lied about the nature of the 2012 case against David Lee Hamblin. A case which mentions David Leavitt and his wife as part of a ritual sex cult abusing children.
- David Leavitt is suspected of improperly adopting a Native American girl.
- Homeland Security Investigations has an open and ongoing investigation into David Leavitt.
We can also confirm that whether or not David Leavitt is implicated in the 2021 UCSO investigation into ritual abuse, there is a very real investigation taking place involving the Sheriff’s Department, and regional and federal law enforcement. This may or may not include the FBI.
With the Utah primary out of the way, perhaps the truth of the investigation will come to light. The Last American Vagabond will report any updates regarding subpoenas, indictments, or arrests.
For the 5th part of the investigation in this series, we will focus on the elephant in the room: The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, aka the Mormon Church, and accusations of ritual sexual abuse.
Derrick Broze, a staff writer for The Last American Vagabond, is a journalist, author, public speaker, and activist. He is the co-host of Free Thinker Radio on 90.1 Houston, as well as the founder of The Conscious Resistance Network & The Houston Free Thinkers.