Monday , June 02, 2014 - 4:31 PM
OGDEN -- A routine plea hearing over a convenience store theft took an unforeseen turn Monday when the defendant delicately explained to the judge he believes he is God.
Anthony Diggs, 28, told Judge Mark DeCaria he has believed his whole life he is "a god," but that in the last couple of years has begun to believe he is in fact God in the primary sense.
DeCaria questioned Diggs, who pleaded guilty Monday to stealing candy and beef jerkey from an Ogden Rite Aid in May, about his participation to-date in mental health programs offered at Weber County Human Services.
Diggs told the judge he hasn't participated in any mental health programs.
"I've just had people ask me if I believe I'm a God and I say yeah I'm a true believer," said Diggs.
DeCaria probed for clarification, asking "That you believe in God or in yourself (as God)?"
"In myself," Diggs responded.
DeCaria tried to gain a general picture of Diggs' self-awareness by asking him about his age and where he grew up.
"It's not every day you understand that someone comes into court and tells us they are God," DeCaria said. "You understand that?"
Diggs, who has earned his high school GED, said he understood and recounted trivia about California, Arizona and Texas for DeCaria, though he incorrectly named Santa Fe as the capitol of the lone star state. His overall response was cogent enough to convince DeCaria he was fit to enter a guilty plea, but not before some more discussion about the nature of his offense. He was charged with a third degree felony because of his prior criminal record.
"I took some candy", said Diggs with an embarrassed laugh when asked about his crime.
DeCaria asked him whether he considered his action to be wrong.
"In a sense, yes," Diggs said, prompting DeCaria to pursue the question further.
"Taking somebody's property without their permission. Is that wrong?" he asked.
Diggs relented to that question with a simple "yes."
Diggs has a history of theft cases and was found in violation of parole for his latest incident. His sentencing is scheduled for July 7.
Contact reporter Ben Lockhart at 801-625-4421 or firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow him on Twitter at @SE_Lockhart.
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