Get breaking news alerts via email

Click here to manage your alerts
Panguitch jury finds former Garfield County public defender guilty of theft charges
This is an archived article that was published on sltrib.com in 2013, and information in the article may be outdated. It is provided only for personal research purposes and may not be reprinted.

A former Garfield County public defender has been found guilty of felony charges of theft or attempted theft by extortion for demanding money, firearms and other forms of payment from indigent clients he was already being paid by taxpayers to defend.

Utah State Court records show a 6th District Court jury found John E. Hummel guilty of five felony counts on Friday night after nearly three hours of deliberation.

Hummel plans to appeal the verdict, his attorney, Gary Pendleton, told The Salt Lake Tribune on Friday evening.

Judge James R. Taylor set a March 15 sentencing date. Combined, the charges could net Hummel a punishment of up to 55 years in prison.

Prosecutors said that in 2008 and 2009, Hummel used his power and influence to extract payments from at least seven clients. In court papers, prosecutors said Hummel's victims claimed to be "naive to the system and how it works" and never would have agreed to the defense attorney's demands if they had known their rights.

Among the items Hummel received as payment for legal services were seven firearms, two 32-inch flat-screen televisions, two computers, an iPod, digital camera, video camera, Play Station 3, DVD player and more than $11,000 cash from seven indigent clients, court documents state.


Article Tools

 Print Friendly
  • Search Obituaries
  • Place an Obituary

  • Search Cars
  • Search Homes
  • Search Jobs
  • Search Marketplace
  • Search Legal Notices

  • Other Services
  • Advertise With Us
  • Subscribe to the Newspaper
  • Access your e-Edition
  • Frequently Asked Questions
  • Contact a newsroom staff member
  • Access the Trib Archives
  • Privacy Policy
  • Missing your paper? Need to place your paper on vacation hold? For this and any other subscription related needs, click here or call 801.204.6100.