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Trooper Steed taken off streets pending investigation

SALT LAKE CITY (ABC 4 News) - Davis County Attorney Troy Rawlings addresses growing controversy surrounding UHP Trooper Lisa Steed. The Utah Department of Public safety also announced a separate investigation, and that Steed had been reassigned.
SALT LAKE CITY (ABC 4 News) - Thursday, Utah's Highway Patrol reassigned embattled Trooper
Lisa Steed to a "non law-enforcement" position.

It's believed this action takes Steed off the streets and moves her to more of a desk job.

The UHP has also asked the attorney general's office to investigate the growing controversy surrounding Steed.

But to avoid any possible conflict of interest, the state's investigation into the Steed controversy
will be conducted by the Utah County Attorney.

Lisa Steed is a former UHP Trooper of the Year.

In fact, she was the first female to be so named.

She earned this honor after making hundreds of DUI arrests.

But, since then, Steed has been in and out of hot water.

The UHP reprimanded her twice in 2010.

Late last year, the state also paid a $40,000 settlement to a man Steed tasered while
he was sitting in his car.

Once, Steed even made a DUI arrest on a man on a motorized bike.
 
The man had epilepsy and cerebral palsy and took medication for his ailments.

Finally,  as ABC 4 first reported, Salt Lake's District Attorney began a review of dozens of Steed's cases.

On Tuesday of this week, a judge dismissed one of those cases and questioned Steed's credibility.

Then Thursday, another judge also dismissed a different Steed DUI case.

The defense attorney told ABC 4 that the judge expressed concern about the credibility issue as well.
 
By the count of Salt Lake District Attorney Sim Gill, five judges have now raised questions
about Trooper Steed's credibility.

Now, on Tuesday, UHP spokesman Dwayne Baird told ABC 4 that,

"The prosecutors in Davis County are very pleased with what she [Steed] does and how she does it. They have no questions at all about her credibility."

But Thursday afternoon, the Davis County attorney offered a stinging rebuke to that comment.

County Attorney Troy Rawlings released a statement warning he may not be able to prosecute Steed's cases in the future.


Here is the entire statement from Davis County Attorney Troy Rawlings:

"Concerning Utah Highway Patrol Trooper Lisa Steed, our office has received multiple media inquiries. She is currently assigned, by the UHP, to patrol Davis County. To assist all media outlets, we provide the following:

The Davis County Attorney’s Office will continue to provide notices and material to defendants related to Trooper Lisa Steed’s conduct and credibility as per Brady v. Maryland and Giglio v. United States. We support these decisions (cited below). They are in the interest of justice.

Beyond that, our office will assess each case involving Trooper Lisa Steed individually with the following in mind:

If there is sufficient evidence for a conviction completely independent of Trooper Steed (we don’t need her as a witness at all or only need her for minor foundational matters such as describing an item of evidence that has verification independent of her; and we address her credibility warts in court on direct examination ourselves), the case might continue. We do not want those who have actually violated the law to escape justice due to the credibility problems of Trooper Steed if we can prove the case independent of her.


However, if Trooper Steed’s investigative or testimonial credibility is an issue at all to prove any element or constitutional component of a case (like the basis for a vehicle stop or a search), the case will be dismissed. Our obligation and duty as public prosecutors is to fairness, justice and constitutional principles, not to vindicate Trooper Steed by going forward. We do not want those who are innocent, or even those who may have violated the law, to be potential victims of the justice system based on Trooper Steed’s misconduct if a case rests in whole, or in part, on her credibility."





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