PIERRE, S.D. – Polygamous leader Lyle Jeffs' one-year run from justice was ended by pliers, sharp-eyed pawn shop workers and an astute off-duty detective in a small town in South Dakota.
The events leading to Jeffs' capture Wednesday in a lakeside area near the South Dakota-Nebraska state line where he was living out of his truck started a day earlier when a pawn shop owner called police about a man who had come to his shop twice acting nervous and fidgety.
After Jeffs sold two pairs of Leatherman pliers and provided his ID, a suspicious pawn shop employee looked up the name and realized the man was wanted by the FBI.
Jeffs escaped home confinement in Utah last year, ahead of his trial in an alleged multimillion-dollar food stamp fraud scheme.