Curtis Vollmar said he plans to appeal the verdict.
beaver • Several months after a jury in St. George acquitted two animal activists in a piglet theft count, another representative of the same organization was found Tuesday by a Beaver judge of trespassing and disorderly conduct at a Pioneer Day event on High Street last July found guilty of the city park.
Curtis Vollmar, the lawmaker and social media manager for animal rights group Direct Action Everywhere, was found guilty by Fifth Circuit Judge Shadrach C. Bradshaw of the Beaver County Circuit Court. While the trespassing charge is a Class B misdemeanor with the potential for six months in prison, Bradshaw fined Vollmar $850 on both charges combined.
Vollmar, 36, of Berkeley, Calif., led a group from the organization known as DxE, which distributed leaflets and spoke to local residents at the July 23 event in support of defendants in the Smithfield Circle Four Farms trial, which was held in St. George later in the year.
The defendants were acquitted of breaking into the Smithfield facility in nearby Milford last October. Unlike that trial, on Tuesday there was no jury and the judge made the final decision and verdict.
St. George News was not allowed to record video in the courtroom but was allowed to take photos during the first hour of the trial and throughout the verdict.
After Tuesday’s verdict, when asked by St. George News if he would appeal, Vollmar said “yes, definitely.”
“I feel like this company has a lot of power over this city,” Vollmar said of Smithfield Foods, which employed one in four workers in the county, including Mayor Matt Robinson, up until last year’s layoffs, according to local statistics. “There is probably a lot of political pressure to try me in this court. But it’s just a judiciary and I’m getting a free retry. So I have a feeling that the next try will be a better, better result.”
To read the full story, visit StGeorgeUtah.com.
This article is published by the Utah News Collaborative, a partnership of Utah news organizations dedicated to educating readers across the state.