Tena Campbell

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Tena Campbell
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Current Court Information:
United States District Court for the District of Utah
Title:   Senior Judge
Position:   Seat #1
Service:
Appointed by:   Bill Clinton
Active:   6/30/1995 - 1/1/2011
Chief:   2006 - 2011
Senior:   1/1/2011 - Present
Preceded by:   Bruce Jenkins
Succeeded by:   Robert Shelby
Personal History
Undergraduate:   University of Idaho, B.A., 1967
Law School:   Arizona State University College of Law, J.D., 1977
Grad. School:   Arizona State University, M.A., 1970

Tena Campbell is an Article III federal judge for the United States District Court of Utah. She joined the court in 1995 after being nominated by President Bill Clinton. Campbell served as chief judge of the court from 2006 until she assumed senior status on January 1, 2011.[1]

Early life and education

Born in Wendell, Idaho, Campbell graduated from the University of Idaho with her bachelor's degree in 1967. Campbell obtained a Master's degree in 1970, and later a Juris Doctor in 1977 from Arizona State University.[1]

Professional career

From 1977 to 1981, Campbell was in private practice in the State of Utah. Campbell became Deputy County Attorney for the Salt Lake County Attorney's Office in 1981, and then joined the U.S. Attorney's Office for the District of Utah as an Assistant U.S. Attorney. Campbell served in that capacity until her appointment to the federal bench in 1995.[1]

Judicial career

District of Utah

Campbell was nominated to the United States District Court for the District of Utah by President Bill Clinton on June 22, 1995, to a seat vacated by Bruce Jenkins as Jenkins assumed senior status. Campbell was confirmed by the U.S. Senate on June 30, 1995, on a Senate vote and received commission on June 30, 1995.[1]

Notable cases

Mistrial declared after defendant shot dead in court (2014)

     United States District Court for the District of Utah (U.S. v. Angilau, 2:08-CR-00758-TC-DBP)

On April 21, 2014, Senior Judge Campbell declared a mistrial in the government's case against Siale Angilau following his shooting by a U.S. Marshal inside her courtroom.[2]


Angilau, an alleged member of the Tongan Crips gang, was indicted in 2010. He was the last of the accused gang members standing trial for his alleged participation in crimes that occurred across the state of Utah, including carjackings, assault, robberies, and shootings. Prior to being shot, Angilau, unshackled at the time, reportedly grabbed a sharp object -- likely a pen or pencil -- and rushed the cooperating witness testifying on the stand in "an aggressive, threatening manner." In early April 2014, Angilau's attorney filed a motion to exclude testimony of the cooperating witness whom his client attempted to attack. Angilau was shot in the chest several times as jurors looked on.[2]


The jurors were "visibly shaken and upset," and because Campbell believed the shooting would "deprive [Angilau] of a fair trial," she declared a mistrial in the case. Angilau was pronounced dead at the hospital following Campbell's ruling.[2]

Utah sex offender registry challenged (2009)

     United States District Court for the District of Utah (John Doe v. Mark Shurtleff, et al., 1:08-CV-64-TC)

On August 20, 2009, Judge Campbell vacated a previous judgment that prevented the State of Utah from enacting its sexual offender registry.[3]


A man who remained anonymous sued the state of Utah, alleging violations of his First Amendment rights, after being required to hand over his contact information and Internet passwords after being convicted of sexual offenses.[3]


Judge Campbell vacated the ruling after the Utah General Assembly took corrective action for the registry to be compliant with the First Amendment. The previous text of the law required offenders to provide Internet screen names and passwords for sites they registered to. It was amended to require offenders to turn over only their Internet identifiers, and to make that information private under state records laws.[3]

See also

External links

References

Federal judicial offices
Preceded by:
Bruce Jenkins
District of Utah
1995–2011
Seat #1
Succeeded by:
Robert Shelby