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Case against former UHP Trooper Lisa Steed will not proceed as a class action

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Posted at 5:49 PM, Apr 09, 2015
and last updated 2015-04-10 09:20:35-04

SALT LAKE CITY –The Second District Court for the State of Utah rejected a motion Thursday from three proposed class plaintiffs to certify the case they filed against former Utah Highway Patrol Trooper Lisa Steed as a class action.

According to a press release from the Utah Attorney General’s Office, if the court had allowed a class action against former Trooper Steed, “potentially hundred of persons whom Steed arrested for DUI could have joined the case against her.”

Steed was named ‘Trooper of the Year’ in 2007 for her high number of DUI arrests, and later she was accused of wrongfully arresting drivers.

The case in question is Romero v. Utah Highway Patrol, and the press release states the court agreed with UHP and Steed in believing each arrest would have to be viewed in the light of the all of the facts and circumstances surrounding it, and that making the case a class action would “make it impracticable to allow the plaintiffs to proceed as a class.”

The release cites the fact the arrests occurred over a period of years, in various locations, at different times of the day and for differing reasons.

Assistant Attorney General Meb Anderson, who represents Steed, said that this was a very important decision.

“We believed all along that the law supported our position that a class cannot be certified when each arrest has to be examined separately,” Anderson stated in the press release. “After reviewing the hundreds of pages of argument, and after hearing argument for over an hour, the Court agreed with us.”

Anderson said Steed was pleased by the court’s decision and maintains that her arrests are lawful and that she is ready to defend her actions in the individual cases against her, which include allegations made by Thomas Romero and Julie Tapia–both of whom were arrested for DUI in 2011 and had their cases dismissed after they said they spent thousands of dollars fighting the allegations.