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Update on DUI-busting superhero Lisa Steed

August 1, 2012

Back in November I wrote about how prosecutors in Salt Lake County were looking into DUI arrests by now-infamous DUI busy bee UHP trooper Lisa Steed.  Since then the Davis County Attorney’s Office has said that they will not prosecute cases in which Steed was a “significant witness”.  Of course, it took all the way til April of this year for the Utah Highway Patrol to take Steed off of road duty – and that was something like two years after the Salt Lake City Weekly wrote a damaging article about the constitutional liberties she had been taking in recent Utah DUI arrests.

A number of things about this fiasco are upsetting.  First, that Steed ignored the Constitutional rights of Utah citizens by doing things like tasing them while they were sitting in their cars, turning off her microphone before talking to DUI suspects, performing field sobriety tests outside of the view of her patrol car’s dashboard camera, taking unauthorized blood draws, and lying in court.

Second, that the obscenely large number of DUI arrests she made were greeted with praise and a trooper of the year award, rather than a raised eyebrow of suspicion and follow-up investigation.  What is that all about? That Chinese swimmer almost beat Michael Phelps’ time in an Olympic swimming competition last week and everyone is insisting that she must have been doping – but you get someone booking multiple times more DUIs than the average UHP trooper and nobody other than the DUI defense attorneys in Utah blink? Really?

Third, that it took prosecutors two years to come around and admit that this UHP trooper was probably really infringing on a lot of people’s 4th Amendment rights.

Fourth, that it took the UHP another several-plus months to admit she’s a rogue outlaw and pull her off the road!

Fifth, that she still has a job as a UHP trooper.  Makes you wonder what you have to do to get fired from the UHP…rob a bank?

…and finally, this most recent and discouraging news: UHP Trooper Lisa Steed will NOT face criminal charges for all of this monkey business.  She admitted she lied in court, the Salt Lake County Attorney investigated the case, we have all this other crap she’s done as well…and she’s not even going to have to face charges.  It absolutely boils my blood when, as a criminal defense attorney in Salt Lake City, I have seen prosecutors charge my clients with crimes where there is really, really, really lame evidence – if any evidence at all – against them. It seems to be no problem to ask the average, low-profile citizen to be charged and brought in to court, and to make them hire a defense attorney to get rid of ridiculous charges.  But as soon as there is a high-profile case that could make a law enforcement agency look bad, they all of a sudden start getting really careful with making sure they have probable cause to arrest someone.

Image courtesy of cityweekly.net

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5 Comments
  1. Tech geek permalink

    Yeah you’re right if she would have followed the guideline correctly of how to arrest someone then still these people on drugs, and alcohol would have been taken off the road to protect possibly my kids, and others from dying from these people. You are a complete idiot. The bottom line is these people were impaired. What happened to this world when people who are drunk or on drugs, can go to court and get away with it, because of an error done by a police officer? You are a joke

    • Jake permalink

      @ Tech Geek: It is people like you who are the joke. Also, It is ridiculous how so many people like you, who blindly side with law enforcement regardless of the facts and circumstances, fail to think freely and critically on their own. How can you ignore the fact that she lied to her supervisors? How do you ignore her admission of intentionally committing criminal activity such as falsifying official police reports and lying in court after being sworn to tell the truth and NOTHING but the truth? As a police officer your credibility is vital to the state’s prosecution of suspected criminals and without that you are worthless on the stand; thus the point of you being on the streets is pointless. Steed’s credibility is relevant in any court where she is testifying as a witness for the state and she is a documented liar!! So why are Utah tax dollars continuing to cover the salary of a police officer who can no longer serve as a credible witness to the state? She was making thousands more arrests than her UHP coworkers AND every other cop in the country! THOUSANDS!! No one asked how she was doing this or suspected she might be a habitual violator of the civil rights of those with whom she contacted? Meanwhile, citizen clowns like you see no problem with her intentionally turning off her mic and intentionally conducting investigations off-camera – technology that is there to safeguard both Steed and those who she contacts – because cops are always right. Somehow they have become perfect while wearing a badge and are no longer human. Yeah… I am confident that makes you the idiot and the joke.

  2. Ladies and gentlemen, meet your jury.

  3. Goodeye permalink

    Yeah! Who needs due process and, constitutional rights? We need tough laws, where police aren’t prevented from doing their jobs. You know, like in Iran. That’s where they get things done!

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  1. Response to DUI commenter, what is the bottom line on Lisa Steed? « defendingtheconstitution

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