Embattled Utah trooper Lisa Steed may switch jobs
Lisa Steed, the Utah Highway Patrol corporal suspected of lying in court and falsifying arrest reports, has been offered a civilian job in state government, her attorney said Monday.
The attorney, Greg Skordas, said Steed has been offered a "non-law enforcement job" elsewhere in the Utah Department of Public Safety, the umbrella agency of UHP.
"She's being reassigned to a non-law enforcement job," Skordas said. "We haven't necessarily agreed to that yet, and so we're still in the negotiating phases. But they've given her a couple options."
Skordas didn't say whether Steed's salary would change should she move to a civilian post. Steed's salary and benefits totaled $88,413 last year, according to Utahsright.com. Steed could contest any demotion or termination through the administrative process available to all state employees.
Skordas didn't say why his client's superiors were opting to move her to a civilian post.
Utah Department of Public Safety spokesman Dwayne Baird denied any such offer has been made. He said Steed remains under investigation.
Steed was the Utah trooper of the year in 2007, but her methods have come under question.
One state judge in Salt Lake County and one in Davis County found Steed had been untruthful on the witness stand during DUI and drug possession cases. The rulings led to a dismissal of charges against both defendants. Soon after the rulings, the UHP removed Steed from road duty and began its own investigation of her.
Earlier this month, The Tribune reported on a 2010 memorandum written by Steed's then-supervisor, Sgt. Rob Nixon. He suggested in the memo that Steed falsified reports in 11 of 20 arrests she made for driving under the influence of drugs. Nixon warned that the UHP needed to address the issue before defense attorneys learned about Steed's pattern.
According to the memo, the alleged DUI offenders in the 11 questionable cases did not test positive for drugs.
After the memo was made public, UHP Maj. Michael Rapich confirmed Steed was not disciplined over the discrepancies cited in the memo, but said "the issue was addressed." He did not elaborate.
Skordas has previously described Steed's transgressions as minor and said her supervisors did not specifically speak to her about the issues raised in the memo.