Super Dell Schanze is in the news again following a jury verdict announced June 7, 2010. According to the Salt Lake Tribune, Schanze was found guilty by a 4th District Court jury of reckless driving, a class-B misdemeanor and a seat belt violation, an infraction. The jury deliberated less than one hour. The judge, Thomas Low, sentenced Schanze to 10 days in jail and a fine of $670. Schanze has already served 8 days related to this crash, so perhaps he’ll get credit for time served.
This all stemmed from an incident on August 18, 2008, when Schanze was driving in Saratoga Springs with his two daughters in a rental car. According to reports, he was rocking his car back and forth as he traveled toward a peace officer on Redwood Road. This caused the peace officer to run off the road to avoid being hit. The peace officer then turned around and pulled Schanze over, citing him. He was cited for reckless driving and a seatbelt violation, which stemmed from having his two daughters strapped into the front seat in one seatbelt. He later testified that he rocked the car to “entertain” his two girls.
After the jury’s verdict, Schanze stated: “We just showed that the justice system is screwed up.” “The whole thing has been a farce.”
What is screwed up in this case is a person who refuses to drive safely and take responsibility for their actions. Although he apparently wanted a “free pass,” I’m glad that this jury held him accountable and said by their verdict that they were going to enforce Utah’s safety rules so as to protect the community from possible future violations by Schanze and other motorists who may wish to flaunt the rules.
As for putting two children in a seatbelt: shame on Schanze. If his car rolled or was hit, the girls very likely could have been ejected or their skulls could have violently struck together causing serious brain injuries. Justice was served in this case.
Ron Kramer is a Utah personal injury and accident lawyer practicing throughout the state. Call the Kramer Law Group today at 801-666-3959 for a free consultation if you are in need of a Utah car accident attorney.