Man settles immigration lawsuit against Salt Lake County, awarded $75,000

Posted at 1:26 PM, Aug 25, 2014
and last updated 2014-08-25 15:55:00-04

SALT LAKE CITY – A man who claimed Salt Lake County Jail officials held him illegally to investigate his immigration status has settled a civil rights lawsuit against the county and Sheriff Jim Winder.

The American Civil Liberties Union of Utah represented Enrique Uroza who said the Salt Lake County Metro Jail and the federal government held him for 46 days after he posted bail back in 2011.

Uroza was a 22-year-old student at Weber State University at that time, according to the ACLU of Utah.

In June 2011, he was accused of forgery and theft.

The ACLU of Utah said the court set bail at $5,000, Uroza was taken into custody and his bond was paid 10 minutes later.

Yet Uroza was not released for over a month.

As part of Monday’s settlement, Salt Lake County has agreed stop using the “SB81 procedure.”

In that procedure, if jail officials suspect the detainee could be an undocumented immigrant, the person in question would not be released for 48 hours.

County officials conceded that procedure was unconstitutional when used against Uroza.

Uroza was awarded $75,000 in damages in the settlement.

Sheriff Winder is expected to respond to the settlement Monday afternoon.