Law student works for justice on gang sweep case

The U.S. District Court in Salt Lake City this week entered a judgment in a case brought by three former West High School students over a 2010 school- based “gang sweep” that prompted a class action lawsuit by the ACLU of Utah and the ACLU Racial Justice Program. As part of its offer of judgment, West Valley City disclaimed liability and offered a total of $50,000 to the three plaintiffs inclusive of all claims, attorney fees, and costs. The case, Winston v. Salt Lake City Police Department, et al, was filed in 2013 in response to a police action at West High in Salt Lake City, where more than 12 joint-agency gang task force officers entered the school during school hours. They detained students on school property, interrogated them about alleged gang affiliations, and photographed them holding signs listing their purported gang affiliations. Nubia Pena, a third year law student at the S.J. Quinney College of Law, worked on the case as part of Racially Just Utah, a coalition that works with the ACLU on issues related to positively and proactively ensuring racial equity in Utah through policy, accountability, and education. She is available to speak about the case.
Nubia Pena, cell: 801-671-3131| Email: nubia.pena@law.utah.edu