Defendant Yohn will represent himself in carjacking, sexual assault trial
QUINCY (WGEM) - Bradley S. Yohn, accused of carjacking and sexually assaulting a 70-year-old Adams County woman, will represent himself when the case goes to trial, which is now set for June.
Yohn appeared Wednesday morning before Judge Roger B. Thomson in Adams County Court for a hearing on Yohn’s request to remove Assistant Public Defender John Citro from the case.
“Mr. Yohn, do you believe that your attorney-client relationship with Mr. Citro is irretrievably broken,” Thomson asked the defendant.
“I wouldn’t say it was irretrievably broken,” Yohn said. though he did tell the judge that he did not want Citro to represent him.
Thomson asked Citro the same question.
“After giving this considerable thought, I do believe that it is,” Citro said.
Thomson asked Yohn whether he was wanting another public defender appointed, which would result in a delay of the trial.
“They’re going to need time to review your case and prepare,” Thomson said.
Yohn was adamant that he wanted to go to trial as soon as possible.
“The public defender system has had time to prepare,” Yohn said. He told the judge that he wanted another public defender and to immediately go to trial.
Thomson said that would be impossible.
“They need time,” Thomson said.
The judge then asked Yohn how he wanted to proceed.
“I want to represent myself and go straight to trial, your honor,” Yohn responded.
Thomson excused Citro from the case. Citro then asked if he could be excused from the courtroom, and he left after Thomson gave him permission.
After the ruling, Yohn asked to read a letter detailing grievances he had with Citro, but Thomson denied the request, noting the matter was moot because Citro had been dismissed.
Yohn tried to push the matter, but Thomson cut him off.
“Mr. Yohn, you’ll learn as counsel for yourself that court is going to do what the court is going to do,” Thomson said.
The judge then read all the charges against Yohn and gave the defendant a series of admonishments.
“A person unfamiliar with legal procedures may give prosecutors an advantage,” Thomson said. He also told Yohn that, if convicted, he would not be able to complain about competency of counsel on appeal. Thomson also said Yohn would not be given an opportunity to change his mind about representing himself during trial.
Thomson also asked Yohn if he felt he was familiar enough with legal procedure to represent himself.
“No sir, I do not as I am not a lawyer,” Yohn said.
The judge then asked Yohn how he wanted to proceed, and Yohn again asked to represent himself.
“I wish to represent myself, your honor,” Yohn said, and Thomson agreed to the request.
“You will be representing yourself in each of these three cases to their conclusion,” Thomson said.
Thomson also directed the Adams County State’s Attorney’s Office to provide Yohn with copies of the discovery materials in the case by the end of day Friday. Assistant State’s Attorney Joshua Jones said there were a few victim photos that would not be appropriate to share copies of with Yohn, and Thomson directed Jones to meet with Thomson on Monday to show him the photos.
Yohn’s trial was set to begin June 21, and Jones requested a status hearing on May 18 to verify that witnesses in the case would be available for the trial.
Citro had been appointed by the court to represent Yohn, who faces two counts of home invasion, one count of aggravated kidnapping, one count of aggravated vehicular hijacking, one count of aggravated criminal sexual assault, all Class X felonies, and residential burglary, a Class 1 felony. Those charges are in connection with a Nov. 9 incident that allegedly began along the North Bottom Road.
He also faces felony charges in two other cases. He was charged with vehicular hijacking stemming from an Oct. 31 incident.
He faces charges of residential burglary, a Class 1 felony; two counts of theft or unauthorized control of property over $500 but under $10,000, Class 3 felonies; and criminal sexual abuse, a Class 4 felony. Those charges stem from an Oct. 14 incident.
Yohn is being held on a $15 million bond, which is believed to be the largest bond amount ever set in Adams County.
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