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UtahsRight: A look at drug charges filed by courts

Published January 5, 2012 4:05 pm

This is an archived article that was published on sltrib.com in 2012, and information in the article may be outdated. It is provided only for personal research purposes and may not be reprinted.

Three Utah district courts had a rate of drug charges filed that was more than twice the amount of the other five courts, according to 2011 data from the Utah State Courts.

Drug charges were filed in the 6th District Court at a rate of 73 per 10,000 people from January to November. That equaled 474 charges filed in the area, which has a population of 65,255. The Sixth District Court encompasses the counties of Garfield, Kane, Piute, Sanpete, Sevier, and Wayne counties.

The Sixth District courthouse, located in Richfield, had the highest number of filings in the district, with 289 drug charges filed. The Kanab courthouse saw 111 filings, the Panguitch courthouse had 33 and the Manti courthouse had 26 filings. Courthouses in Junction and Loa saw fewer than 10 filings each.

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Closely behind, the Fifth District Court — which includes Beaver, Washington and Iron counties — had 72 drug charges filed per 10,000 people from January to November. Just more than 1,300 charges were filed in the tri-county area, which has a population of 190,907.

The Fifth District Courthouse in St. George had the most filings — 1,012 were filed in the time period – followed by the Cedar City courthouse with 344 filings, and the Beaver Courthouse, which had just 20 filings.

The data was compiled by UtahsRight.com for a weekly series in The Salt Lake Tribune's neighborhood sections highlighting information gleaned from public databases. The purpose is not to provide analysis of the data, but rather to provide the raw information in public databases so the public can analyze the data for their own purposes.

Specific information about drugs charges and district court filings, along with other public information, is available at UtahsRight.com.

The charges included in the numbers include any charges regarding the use or possession of drugs or paraphernalia, including attempted use or possession. The information was gleaned from a records request made to the Utah State Courts.

The Eighth District Court — Daggett, Duchesne and Uintah counties — had 70 drug charges filed per every 10,000 people, or 367 charges against a population of 52,254.

The Duchesne courthouse had the most filings in the Eighth District Court, with 177 in the time period, while the Vernal courthouse had 167 filings, the Roosevelt courthouse had 19 filings and the Manila courthouse had just four filings.

The First District Court — which includes the counties of Box Elder, Cache and Rich — had the lowest rate of drug charges filed in the state, with 26 charges filed per 10,000 people for the time period. There were 422 drug-related charges filed in the tri-county area, which has a population of 164,895.

The Logan courthouse had 318 charges filed, while the Box Elder courthouse had 96 and the Randolph courthouse had eight filings.

The Second District Court had the second-lowest rate, with 30 charges filed per every 10,000 people. This equaled 1,839 charges filed in the area that has a population of 607,184.

The Ogden courthouse had 947 charges filed, Farmington had 660 charges filed and the Layton courthouse had 139 charges filed. The Bountiful courthouse had 76 charges filed in the time period, while the Morgan courthouse had 17 charges filed.

The Fourth District Court, which includes Juab, Utah and Wasatch counties, had a rate of 32 charges filed per every 10,000 people. There were 1,798 charges filed in the area, which has a population of 562,843.

The Provo courthouse had the highest number of filings, with 1,053 charges filed. The American Fork courthouse had 326, the Spanish Fork courthouse had 159 and the Heber courthouse had 126 drug charges filed. The Fillmore courthouse had 90 charges filed, while the Nephi courthouse had 44.

The Third District Court, which includes Tooele, Salt Lake and Summit counties, had a rate of 39 charges filed per 10,000 people. There were 4,352 charges filed in the tri-county area, which has a population of 1.1 million people.

The Salt Lake City courthouse had the highest number of charges, with 3,607 charges filed in the time period. The West Jordan courthouse had 472, while Tooele had 176 filings. The Silver Summit courthouse, located in Park City, had 97 charges filed.

The Seventh District Court, which encompasses San Juan and Grand counties, had a rate of 43 drugs charges filed per 10,000 people. There were 367 charges filed in the area, which has a population of 56,350 people.

The Price courthouse had the highest number of filings, with 135, followed by Moab with 48 filings, Castle Dale with 44 and Monticello with 14.

UtahsRight.com, the data website for The Salt Lake Tribune, conducts an ongoing statewide quest for district court information and other public information, including salaries of public employees and restaurant inspections, using public records requests made under the state's Government Records Access and Management Act, also known as GRAMA.