BRIGHAM CITY -- A former Box Elder County sheriff's deputy earned his second jail term in two weeks Wednesday for checking female motorists for tattoos.
Scott R. Womack, 37, was sentenced to a year in jail by 1st District Judge Kevin Allen on misdemeanor counts of custodial sexual misconduct and attempted custodial misconduct. One was reduced from a felony under terms of Womack's February plea bargain in which nine similar charges were dismissed.
Allen ordered the one-year term to run concurrently with an 18-month federal prison sentence imposed Aug. 12 in Salt Lake City on federal charges involving the same eight victims.
U.S. District Judge David Sam ordered Womack to self-surrender to the federal Bureau of Prisons by Oct. 14. Judge Allen honored that same date for Womack to begin his one-year term, choosing not to have Womack jailed immediately.
All the charges stem from a five-month period during 2010 when Womack was a sheriff's deputy patrolling Box Elder's west side. He induced women to partially disrobe in order to check for identifying tattoos, prosecutors said. He told the young women he had an arrest warrant for a woman with the same name as their's with a particular tattoo.
The women were asked to show they lacked the tattoo, and Womack then sent them on their way.
Defense Attorney Bernie Allen, no relation to the judge, said after Wednesday's sentencing that Womack never made any attempt to touch the women "or do any of the things people do when they have sexual intent."
For his client, the incidents were born of control issues, he said, out of anger and frustration with his own life rather than anything sexual.
At the federal sentencing last week, officials talked of Womack's IQ as having a bearing on the case. Assistant U.S. Attorney Carlos Esqueda after the Aug. 12 hearing said he could not disclose Womack's IQ, and would only say a pre-sentence evaluation showed he had a "diminished ability of understanding."
"I have no idea what that's about," Allen said Wednesday, describing his client as having normal intelligence. "I do have to speak rather concretely to him ... his attention can wander."
Womack, and the county, still face a federal lawsuit from three of the victims.