Former Utah Teacher Convicted of Sexual Abuse of a Student Arrested for Probation Violation

A former Utah teacher convicted of sexual abuse of a student was arrested this month for probation violation as well as charges of drug distribution.

Drug distribution charges

29 year old Sarah Lindsay Lewis, a former Spanish Fork high school teacher arrested last year for unlawful sexual activity with a minor was arrested again; this time for dealing methamphetamine out of her car. Earlier this month, Lewis was apprehended by the Major Crimes Task Force with drug paraphernalia and enough methamphetamine to generate distribution charges.

Probation violation

Lewis was previously arrested in January 2017 for unlawful sexual activity with one of her students at a high school in Spanish Fork, Utah. Although she is not facing additional sex abuse charges, she was found to be in violation of her probation and sentenced to three days in jail. According to the Utah Department of Corrections all probationers, regardless of what previous crime they were convicted of, are to abide by the standard conditions of probation which include:

• Permitting visits to home, work, and elsewhere;
• Report as directed and stay in Utah and at established residence if ordered to do so;
• Obey all laws;
• Not possess any weapons;
• Permit searches;
• Not associate with others involved in criminal activity;
• Obtain and maintain employment;
• Be cooperative and honest with AP&P;
• Pay supervision fee;
• Submit DNA;
• Comply with curfew;
• Comply with Case Action Plan; and
• “Abstain from the illegal use, possession, control, delivery, production, manufacture or distribution of controlled substances (58-37-2 U.C.A) and submit to tests of breath or body fluids to ensure compliance with the Probation Agreement.”

Penalties for violating probation

There are additional conditions that are added for those convicted of gang related crimes or sex offenses, but the standard conditions apply to all probationers. Those who violate the conditions of their probation may face immediate arrest and a hearing where their probation may be “revoked, modified, continued, or reinstated for all or a portion of the original term” as stated by Utah Code 77-18-1. Those facing probation violations are encouraged to obtain legal defense counsel prior to this hearing where the fate of their probation is decided.

DUI Arrests in Utah May Result in Ignition Interlock Device

When an individual in Utah is arrested for a DUI, they may end up sporting an ignition interlock device in their car to keep tabs on them and prevent them from reoffending.

DUI Charges

Photo by:
Sonny Abesamis

Utah is soon to be the strictest state in regards to driving intoxicated when the BAC limit is lowered to .05% next December. When that occurs, anyone with a smidgeon of alcohol on their breath could face 48 hours in jail and a fine of $700 along with other screening and possible classes. Others, including those with subsequent offenses, minors, or those with high a high BAC may face greater challenges including loss of driver’s licenses and expensive ignition interlock devices.

Ignition interlock

An ignition interlock is an expensive device that is installed in a defendant’s vehicle for a determined amount of time following a DUI charge where according to Utah Code 41-6a-505 “there is admissible evidence that the person had a blood alcohol level of .16 or higher”. Ignition interlock devices may also be ordered by the courts if the driver was under the age limit to legally consume alcohol, repeat offenders, or for those who caused injury or death while driving intoxicated. ignition interlock is a built in breathalyzer, requiring drivers to blow into it to be able to start their vehicle. If the ignition interlock detects alcohol, it will not allow the vehicle to be started.

Record and report

Last year alone, ignition interlock devices were credited with stopping over 2,500 individuals from driving while intoxicated. Ignition interlocks do more than prevent a person from driving while intoxicated however. When the device detects alcohol, it electronically stores that information and shares it with the courts which could put a person in violation of their probation. Those who are facing a DUI charge or a probation violation after a failed attempt with an ignition interlock are encouraged to immediately seek counsel with an attorney to receive legal advice in how to proceed with their case.