This article was first published in the Liberty Reporter: 2015 Fall Newsletter >>
In early June, the Second District Court of Utah filed an order vacating two misdemeanor convictions against Leland McCubbin for violating the so-called Ogden “Gang Injunction.” That injunction placed various restrictions on those served with it, including a curfew and a prohibition on being seen in public with other alleged gang members in Ogden. In October 2013, the Utah Supreme Court vacated the injunction due to improper service. Mr. McCubbin, represented by the ACLU of Utah and cooperating attorney Randall Richards of Richards Brown Law, later brought a petition under the state Post Conviction Remedies Act to expunge his record of his two misdemeanor convictions related to violations of that injunction.
In a comprehensive ruling granting Mr. McCubbin’s petition, the Court held that the convictions should be vacated because the convictions were obtained in violation of Mr. McCubbin’s rights under the state and federal constitutions, and because the Utah Supreme Court announced a new rule that applied to Mr. McCubbin.
“I am elated with the Court’s order,” said Mr. McCubbin. “Having these unfair convictions off my record is like a weight off my shoulders. Being wrongly subjected to the injunction was hard enough, but being convicted of breaking it added insult to injury,” he continued.
“The Court’s order is a big victory for the rights of all Utahns,” said John Mejia, Legal Director of the ACLU of Utah. “It sends the clear message that no matter what your standing in society is, when the government does not follow the state and federal constitution in every aspect of prosecuting you, any resulting conviction will not stand,” he concluded.
More about this case can be found at www.acluutah.org/legal-work/current-cases.