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The Secret life of Secrets of Polygamy’s Matt Browning

Matt Browning is continuing his crusade against extremist polygamist groups in Secrets of Polygamy, but he has a long history in law enforcement.

If you tuned in to watch the edge-of-your seat documentary series, Escaping Polygamy, on Lifetime around 2014, then chances are that you already know that the extremist polygamist groups operating in different areas of the United States are often much more dangerous than they may seem from the outside.

You will also know that the investigator, Matt Browning, and his wife, Tawni Browning, have devoted many years of their lives to trying to expose the truth about the religious sects.

Matt’s role on Secrets of Polygamy

Now, Matt and Tawni (and most of the old Escaping Polygamy crew, including the RIVR production company) have returned with a brand new show, called Secrets of Polygamy.

This show aims to continue their mission to bring to light the claims of abuse, incest and fraud which have run rampant in these fringe-communities for decades.

This time around, Matt will not be in his usual capacity, rescuing escapee families under the cover of nightfall.

Instead, he will be meeting with and interviewing other escaped former members in order to get the real, true stories of what is going on inside these groups.

The show also sees Matt and Tawni reflect on their own experiences growing up within polygamist groups, as well as Matt’s years of experience both as an undercover member of extremist groups and ultimately becoming the target of various powerful groups’ rage.

All about the show

Matt’s new show, Secrets of Polygamy, aims to expose the dark underbelly of extreme polygamist groups like Fundamentalist Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints (FLDS), the Kingston clan, The Order, and many more, through first-hand accounts of insiders like Rachel Jeffs Blackmore, Mary Ann Kingston, Lu Ann Cooper and Faith Bistline.

The details of this show can be outlined as follows:

Detail Description
Series premiere “The New Prophet Part 1” on January 8, 2024
Most recent episode “Bleeding the Beast Part 2” on January 29, 2024
Timeslot Mondays at 10 p.m. ET/PT
Where to watch Episodes air live on A&E and are available for next-day streaming

The surprising start of Matt’s career

While avid A&E fans may know Matt best for his superman-like interventions on shows like Escaping Polygamy and now Secrets of Polygamy, he actually started his career infiltrating other kinds of violent groups.

Before Matt became the anti-sect investigator that we all know and love today, he actually worked as a Mesa PD officer for over 25 years.

After Matt was threatened by a suspect on the job, he made the difficult decision to go undercover and infiltrate various modern-day hate groups in order to learn more about how they operate, how they are connected, and how to take them down.

Matt and Tawni even wrote a book about Matt’s undercover work and everything that they learned about these hate groups along the way, called The Hate Next Door, which you can purchase on Amazon.

Matt also worked for the FBI

Matt’s incredible undercover work eventually got him transferred from the gangs division to Mesa’s intelligence unit in 1997.

And eventually, he had progressed through the ranks and moved on to work in the fugitives division of the FBI between 2000 and 2002.

This new assignment at the FBI took Matt away from his undercover work, but he still felt like he had some unfinished business within Phoenix’s most horrible and violent undercover circles.

So Matt got right back to his previous hate group destruction-mission as soon as his tenure at the FBI had run its course in August of 2002.

The secret to Matt’s resolve

Matt’s former sergeant, Mike Ivey, told The SPLC that the secret to Matt’s success was his passion for the work.

And after Matt had been instrumental in bringing down Josh Fielder in 2006, Mike said: “There are very few detectives that take an interest in something, develop a passion for it and focus all their energy on it. Not many detectives are willing to invest the personal time.”

However, Matt has a different take on what has driven him on his mission to eradicate these violent hate groups for all these years.

According to Matt, one of the main reasons why he has been so successful, especially in this new mission to expose the truth behind the polygamist sects detailed on Secrets of Polygamy – is the fact that Tawni has been right by his side through the entire process through the years.

Matt shared on Arroe Collins’ podcast Like It’s Live “It’s a good thing that I do this with my wife.”