Courts •Defendant, accused of sexual assault during traffic stops, has pled no contest.
This is an archived article that was published on sltrib.com in 2013, and information in the article may be outdated.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.
Brigham City » Sentencing has been postponed for a former Box Elder County sheriff's deputy accused of sexually assaulting women during a series of traffic stops.
Scott Womack, 37, was scheduled to be sentenced Wednesday in 1st District Court, where he has pleaded no contest to misdemeanor counts of custodial sexual misconduct and attempted custodial misconduct, according to court records. Nine other charges were dropped in a plea deal with prosecutors that will allow Womack to avoid state prison.
On Wednesday, Deputy Box Elder County Attorney Michael Christiansen asked Judge Kevin Allen to reset the sentencing hearing for June 12 so attorneys can coordinate with federal prosecutors.
In federal court, Womack faces eight federal counts of violating the alleged victims' civil rights, a misdemeanor offense. A change of plea hearing is set for before U.S. District Judge David Sam.
Defense attorney Bernard Allen said after Wednesday's hearing that his client's state sentence will depend largely on what federal prosecutors deem appropriate.
Womack is accused of ordering women to expose parts of their bodies during strip searches during traffic stops on eight different occasions between October 2010 and July 2011, according to charging documents.
He allegedly told the women he needed to document body art and piercings, and demanded they remove their clothing to reveal intimate areas. He was charged in various jurisdictions in the northern Utah county earlier this year after an investigation by the Weber County Sheriff's Office.
Three women who said they were victimized by Womack have filed civil lawsuits that name Womack, Box Elder County Sheriff J. Lynn Yeates, Box Elder County and the Utah Department of Public Safety as defendants.
Yeates has said Womack was fired after one of the alleged victims filed a complaint in July 2011.
Womack has remained out of custody throughout these proceedings.
He appeared in court Wednesday surrounded by family.
Wearing a plaid shirt and blue jeans, Womack waited for the judge to call his case sitting in a back room of the court, shrouded by blinds that court workers said is typically reserved for victims who do not want to be seen by defendants.
In exchange for Womack's pleas in state court, Box Elder County prosecutors dropped nine additional misdemeanor charges, including official misconduct, lewdness, unlawful detention and theft.