House panel kills Senate bill SB109 that would have tightened police property seizure rules in Utah

A bill to tighten police property seizure rules breezed through the Utah Senate recently, but a House committee quickly killed it Friday after relentless criticism by law enforcement.

Sen. Todd Weiler’s Senate Bill 109 would eliminate a loophole he said was a “vestige of pay to play” incentives under current law that could allow police to skirt protections against improper civil asset forfeiture of cash or other property.

But Ogden Police Chief Randy Watt, U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration Utah Agent-in-Charge Brian Besser and commanders of the narcotics task forces in Weber, Davis, Salt Lake and Utah counties uniformly blasted the bill.