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Fired Utah Trooper ruined hundreds of lives making false arrests

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dmcowen674

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Oct 13, 1999
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1-4-2013

http://news.yahoo.com/former-cop-accused-faking-duis-021947523--abc-news-topstories.html

Fired State Trooper Accused of Faking DUI Arrests



A class-action lawsuit has been filed against a former Utah Highway Patrol trooper and her superiors alleging that she filed false DUI charges during her career.


The department fired Lisa Steed in November for alleged misconduct related to her duties.


Attorney Michael Studebaker, who is one of the lawyers leading the class-action lawsuit, says he has been contacted by at least 40 people claiming Steed wrongfully arrested them on DUI or drug charges.

She is under investigation by the FBI.

Studebaker also cites a dashcam video from a 2011 traffic stop that he says shows Steed's pulling over a woman driver. The video shows the driver performing a series of sobriety tests. Studebaker says the unidentified woman passed all the tests with flying colors but was still arrested for DUI.


Charges were later dropped after a blood test found no alcohol in her system, Studebaker says. The driver has since joined the lawsuit against Steed.


Steed was named Utah Highway Patrol's "Trooper of the Year" in 2007 for making more than 200 DUI arrests, a reward that Studebaker says should be taken away from her.

In 2009, dashcam video showed Steed stun-gunning Ryan Jones, a motorist who was later determined to be sober.


The case was settled in November 2011 when the state paid Jones $40,000 without admitting wrongdoing.
 

dmcowen674

No Lifer
Oct 13, 1999
54,912
46
91
www.alienbabeltech.com
Color me surprised















Not


I drive a fuel efficient car and I know because of it many of the stops are baseless.

debi was with me just last Friday we were accused of going over the speed limit and I was no where near the speed limit.

They are nothing but revenue generators now.

Serve and Protect is out the window.
 

halik

Lifer
Oct 10, 2000
25,708
1
0
1) Incentivise cops to make DUI arrests
2) Act surprised when they arrest sober people per their incentives
 

Londo_Jowo

Lifer
Jan 31, 2010
17,304
158
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londojowo.hypermart.net
debi was with me just last Friday we were accused of going over the speed limit and I was no where near the speed limit.
Are you admitting to driving without insurance? I could have sworn that you were going to be riding your bicycle as you couldn't afford to pay for insurance after your accident in Florida.
 

werepossum

Elite Member
Jul 10, 2006
29,876
460
126
1) Incentivise cops to make DUI arrests
2) Act surprised when they arrest sober people per their incentives
3) Big profit!

We had a similar situation in my home county with a county officer claiming people were running away and, after a "hot pursuit", he would lose them on the back roads. A couple dozen people at least were picked up at work and charged with evading arrest, reckless driving, etc. Turns out he was merely driving by a local resort's bar and noting plate numbers and vehicles descriptions for later dramatization. He only got fired after reporting another hot pursuit when it was discovered that the car which had outran his cruiser had no engine or transmission, being parked at the resort while its owner (the resort owner) had them rebuilt. Kinda hard to explain why you can't catch an immobile car.
 

Nintendesert

Diamond Member
Mar 28, 2010
7,761
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And these are the people that are supposed to protect us all from the criminals once all the guns are taken away?

LOL.
 

Thump553

Lifer
Jun 2, 2000
11,857
1,182
126
3) Big profit!

We had a similar situation in my home county with a county officer claiming people were running away and, after a "hot pursuit", he would lose them on the back roads. A couple dozen people at least were picked up at work and charged with evading arrest, reckless driving, etc. Turns out he was merely driving by a local resort's bar and noting plate numbers and vehicles descriptions for later dramatization. He only got fired after reporting another hot pursuit when it was discovered that the car which had outran his cruiser had no engine or transmission, being parked at the resort while its owner (the resort owner) had them rebuilt. Kinda hard to explain why you can't catch an immobile car.
Man, that is classic.
 

Doppel

Lifer
Feb 5, 2011
13,313
2
0
3) Big profit!

We had a similar situation in my home county with a county officer claiming people were running away and, after a "hot pursuit", he would lose them on the back roads. A couple dozen people at least were picked up at work and charged with evading arrest, reckless driving, etc. Turns out he was merely driving by a local resort's bar and noting plate numbers and vehicles descriptions for later dramatization. He only got fired after reporting another hot pursuit when it was discovered that the car which had outran his cruiser had no engine or transmission, being parked at the resort while its owner (the resort owner) had them rebuilt. Kinda hard to explain why you can't catch an immobile car.
He should spend many years in prison over this. How easy did he get off?
 

walkur

Senior member
May 1, 2001
770
4
81
I've always wondered.. can people be arrested and convicted by failing the sobriety test?
I always assumed that those tests act as a screening, with the actual tests being done at the police station.

(In the netherlands every cop car has a mobile breathalizer that's used for screening and a calibrated breathalizer machine (or blood test) at the station to register the actual alcohol levels)
 
Feb 10, 2000
30,033
64
91
I've always wondered.. can people be arrested and convicted by failing the sobriety test?
I always assumed that those tests act as a screening, with the actual tests being done at the police station.

(In the netherlands every cop car has a mobile breathalizer that's used for screening and a calibrated breathalizer machine (or blood test) at the station to register the actual alcohol levels)
A person can be convicted of DUI with no testing at all, based solely on the testimony of the arresting officer. Obviously if someone has been smoking pot or taking Oxycontin he won't test positive on a BAC test, but may in fact be impaired and showing signs of impairment. I would expect the same is true in any country (which is substantially all of them) that criminalizes driving while impaired.
 

brandonb

Diamond Member
Oct 17, 2006
3,731
2
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I've always wondered.. can people be arrested and convicted by failing the sobriety test?
(In the netherlands every cop car has a mobile breathalizer that's used for screening and a calibrated breathalizer machine (or blood test) at the station to register the actual alcohol levels)
In the states, you can get a DWAI. Which is the same as a DUI... It basically means the officer determined you were impaired at the time of the stop. They use this law because from the time it takes to get from the stop to the police station you could have sobered up and fell to less than what the legal limit is. So you get charged with DWAI. Which is a technicality law and is open to subjective thoughts of the officer "The person seemed impaired, but when they took the test at the station they were under the legal limit. At the time of the stop, they seemed like they were over the legal limit. If I have the evidence of the failed sobriety test, they are still in trouble."

This is allowed because cops are considered "experts of the state" meaning they have been trained to know when someone is impaired or not, and their testimony is no different than getting an expert to speak on behalf of the evidence.

<--- I have one and went through this same scenario.

In my case, the cop sent me to detox, and they took another reading which read at 0.047 (about half the legal limit) which was a real blood test. Detox centers are not determined "experts of the state" so their evidence was not allowed in court, but the officers field sobriety test was. :) The meter at the station indicated less then the legal limit, so it was just the field sobriety test at work here vs. my non allowed evidence from the detox center to counter act the field sobriety test.

I was convincted of DWAI.
 
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