Recently Newstalk 870 polled you, our listeners, about a controversial local story.

Matthew Hibbard, former manager and bouncer at Jack Didley's club in downtown Kennewick plans to appeal his conviction on 3rd. degree assault charges stemming from a July 4, 2012 incident outside the bar.

He was found guilty of the charges after a patron, Ben Ensign, was dropped on his head while being removed from the bar.    Hibbard indicated to Benton County court officials he plans to appeal his conviction, but due to lack of funding, would ask for a public defender.

His original attorney will be retained for the civil damages case that has been filed by the Ensign family.

We asked in our poll if he should be allowed to use a public defender for the criminal appeal, especially if he was retaining his original attorney for the other case.  The results came back as follows:

  • 66% of those surveyed said "no-let him pay for his own attorney."
  • 33% of those surveyed said "yes-it's been done before."

Newstalk will continue to follow this case.  No definitive information has been released if the court will be granting Hibbard's request.  Several hundred responses were received in the Newstalk 870 poll.