Southern Utah News Articles
Former Kane County Attorney John Hummel disbarred
Former Kane County Attorney John Hummel has been disbarred from practicing law. On August 11, 2017, Judge M. James Brady, Fifth Judicial District Court, entered an Order of Discipline: Disbarment.
According to the Utah Bar Journal, Hummel had contracted with Garfield County to provide legal representation to indigent defendants. As part of that arrangement, Hummel was aware he would receive a certain set amount of money for providing the legal services to indigents, without any additional compensation or remuneration.
However, Hummel accepted firearms and other property as payment from the indigent clients. He told the clients they would get a better deal, less jail time, or that he would do a better job, if additional fees were paid.
Criminal charges were filed against Hummel. A jury trial was held, and he was found guilty of three counts of theft, second-degree felonies, and two counts of theft and attempted theft, third-degree felonies.
Judge Brady went on to say in his ruling that Hummel engaged in the criminal acts of theft and attempted theft, which reflect adversely on his honesty, trustworthiness or fitness as a lawyer in other respects. He knew his compensation was to come from the county only. He deceived indigent clients, and took money and property from them, even though he was already receiving compensation for legal services from the county.
Prior to this action, Hummel had appealed his lengthy court battle all the way to the Supreme Court of Utah, which upheld his conviction in an April 4, 2017 ruling.