PROVO — The man accused of shooting and killing a Provo police officer earlier this month will remain jailed without the possibility of bail as he awaits trial.
A judge on Monday appointed a team of public defenders to represent Matt Frank Hoover, 40. He faces a charge of aggravated murder, a capital offense, in connection with the death of officer Joseph Shinners, 29.
Prosecutors likely won't determine if they will seek the death penalty for several months, said Utah County Deputy Attorney Chad Grunander.
Hoover walked into the courtroom very slowly Monday, surrounded by bailiffs. He said little during the brief hearing and indicated he wanted a public defender.
Judge Kraig Powell ordered him to be held without bail, citing the severity of the charges and prior probation violations.1 comment on this story
On Jan. 5,officers sought to arrest Hoover in Orem on warrants for violations of his probation on drug and joyriding convictions, but he ignored commands to surrender and backed his pickup truck into a police car, court documents state. When Shinners, 29, tried to help another officer get Hoover out of the truck, Hoover shot Shinners in the chest with a stolen pistol and the officer returned fire, striking Hoover in the abdomen, prosecutors allege.
Shinners later died at Utah Valley Hospital, and Hoover was booked into the Utah County Jail after about two weeks in a hospital.
He returns to court on March 4th, where he will face other charges of assault on a police officer, theft by receiving stolen property and possession of a firearm by a restricted person, all second-degree felonies. He is also charged with failing to stop for at an officer's commands and two counts of drug possession, third-degree felonies.