Representative Andrew Stoddard proposes the following substitute bill:




Chief Sponsor: Andrew Stoddard

Senate Sponsor: Luz Escamilla


8     General Description:
9          This bill modifies the authority of the Peace Officer Standards and Training Council
10     (council) in relation to certain peace officer misconduct.
11     Highlighted Provisions:
12          This bill:
13          ▸     allows the council to take certain action if a peace officer is found by the peace
14     officer's employer to have violated minimum use of force standards; and
15          ▸     makes technical changes.
16     Money Appropriated in this Bill:
17          None
18     Other Special Clauses:
19          None
20     Utah Code Sections Affected:
21     AMENDS:
22          53-6-211, as last amended by Laws of Utah 2021, Chapters 96 and 311

24     Be it enacted by the Legislature of the state of Utah:
25          Section 1. Section 53-6-211 is amended to read:

26          53-6-211. Suspension or revocation of certification -- Right to a hearing --
27     Grounds -- Notice to employer -- Reporting -- Judicial appeal.
28          (1) The council has the authority to issue a Letter of Caution, or suspend or revoke the
29     certification of a peace officer, if the peace officer:
30          (a) willfully falsifies any information to obtain certification;
31          (b) has any physical or mental disability affecting the peace officer's ability to perform
32     duties;
33          (c) engages in conduct constituting a state or federal criminal offense, but not including
34     a traffic offense that is a class C misdemeanor or infraction;
35          (d) refuses to respond, or fails to respond truthfully, to questions after having been
36     issued a warning issued based on Garrity v. New Jersey, 385 U.S. 493 (1967);
37          (e) engages in sexual conduct while on duty;
38          (f) is certified as a law enforcement peace officer, as defined in Section 53-13-102, and
39     is unable to possess a firearm under state or federal law;
40          (g) is found by a court or [by a] law enforcement agency to have knowingly engaged in
41     conduct that involves dishonesty or deception in violation of a policy of the peace officer's
42     employer or in violation of a state or federal law; [or]
43          (h) is found by a court or [by a] law enforcement agency to have knowingly engaged in
44     biased or prejudicial conduct against one or more individuals based on the individual's race,
45     color, sex, pregnancy, age, religion, national origin, disability, sexual orientation, or gender
46     identity[.]; or
47          (i) is notified by the peace officer's employer that the peace officer's employer found
48     the peace officer to have knowingly engaged in conduct in violation of the minimum use of
49     force standards created under Subsection 53-6-107(1)(e) and mandated under Section
50     53-6-109.
51          (2) The council may not issue a Letter of Caution or suspend or revoke the certification
52     of a peace officer for a violation of state or federal law or a violation of a law enforcement
53     agency's policies, general orders, or guidelines of operation that do not amount to a cause of
54     action under Subsection (1).
55          (3) (a) The division is responsible for investigating officers who are alleged to have
56     engaged in conduct in violation of Subsection (1).

57          (b) The division shall initiate all adjudicative proceedings under this section by
58     providing to the peace officer involved notice and an opportunity for a hearing before an
59     administrative law judge.
60          (c) All adjudicative proceedings under this section are civil actions, notwithstanding
61     whether the issue in the adjudicative proceeding is a violation of statute that may be prosecuted
62     criminally.
63          (d) (i) The burden of proof on the division in an adjudicative proceeding under this
64     section is by clear and convincing evidence.
65          (ii) If a peace officer asserts an affirmative defense, the peace officer has the burden of
66     proof to establish the affirmative defense by a preponderance of the evidence.
67          (e) If the administrative law judge issues findings of fact and conclusions of law stating
68     there is sufficient evidence to demonstrate that the officer engaged in conduct that is in
69     violation of Subsection (1), the division shall present the finding and conclusions issued by the
70     administrative law judge to the council.
71          (f) The division shall notify the chief, sheriff, or administrative officer of the police
72     agency which employs the involved peace officer of the investigation and shall provide any
73     information or comments concerning the peace officer received from that agency regarding the
74     peace officer to the council before a Letter of Caution is issued, or a peace officer's certification
75     may be suspended or revoked.
76          (g) If the administrative law judge finds that there is insufficient evidence to
77     demonstrate that the officer is in violation of Subsection (1), the administrative law judge shall
78     dismiss the adjudicative proceeding.
79          (4) (a) The council shall:
80          (i) accept the administrative law judge's findings of fact and conclusions of law, and
81     the information concerning the peace officer provided by the officer's employing agency; and
82          (ii) choose whether to issue a Letter of Caution, or suspend or revoke the officer's
83     certification.
84          (b) Before making a decision, the council may consider aggravating and mitigating
85     circumstances.
86          (c) A member of the council shall recuse him or herself from consideration of an issue
87     that is before the council if the council member:

88          (i) has a personal bias for or against the officer;
89          (ii) has a substantial pecuniary interest in the outcome of the proceeding and may gain
90     or lose some benefit from the outcome; or
91          (iii) employs, supervises, or works for the same law enforcement agency as the officer
92     whose case is before the council.
93          (5) (a) Termination of a peace officer, whether voluntary or involuntary, does not
94     preclude suspension or revocation of a peace officer's certification by the council if the peace
95     officer was terminated for any of the reasons under Subsection (1).
96          (b) Employment by another agency, or reinstatement of a peace officer by the original
97     employing agency after termination by that agency, whether the termination was voluntary or
98     involuntary, does not preclude suspension or revocation of a peace officer's certification by the
99     council if the peace officer was terminated for any of the reasons under Subsection (1).
100          (6) (a) A chief, sheriff, or administrative officer of a law enforcement agency who is
101     made aware of an allegation against a peace officer employed by that agency that involves
102     conduct in violation of Subsection (1) shall conduct an administrative or internal investigation
103     into the allegation and report the findings of the investigation to the division if the allegation is
104     substantiated.
105          (b) If a peace officer who is the subject of an internal or administrative investigation
106     into allegations that include any of the conditions or circumstances outlined in Subsection (1)
107     resigns, retires, or otherwise separates from the investigating law enforcement agency before
108     the conclusion of the investigation, the chief, sheriff, or administrative officer of that law
109     enforcement agency shall complete the investigation and report the findings to the division.
110          (7) The council's issuance of a Letter of Caution, or suspension or revocation of an
111     officer's certification under Subsection (4) may be appealed under Title 63G, Chapter 4, Part 4,
112     Judicial Review.