Leaving Child in Car Unattended May Soon Be A Crime in Utah

Senate Bill 124

If passed, SB 124, which is being considered by the Utah Senate, will make it a Class C misdemeanor to leave a child under 9 in an enclosed compartment of a car, who is not supervised by a person who is 12 years or older.  The attendant conditions of leaving the child in the car must also present a risk to the child’s health or safety.

The language of this bill seem ambiguous.  What exactly is an “enclosed compartment” and how will a law enforcement officer decide whether the conditions present a risk to the child’s health and safety?

Obviously there are situations when a parent should not leave a child alone in a car (e.g., mid-July in Phoenix with the car off and the windows rolled up), but this bill could result in the police getting called when a mom runs in to pick up a pizza or drop off library books.

Parents generally know what is best for their children, and for those parents who don’t, there are sufficient safeguards and laws already in place.

Send Us A Message

More Posts

When is a protective sweep justified?

What Is A Protective Sweep?

A Protective Sweep is an Exception to the Warrant Rule. Generally speaking, law enforcement officers cannot enter your home to conduct a search without a