2019 Bills

HB 170: Criminalizing the Failure to Call 911

To track the status of this bill, find it on our Legislation Tracker. Click here to contact the sponsor of the bill to share your thoughts, or click here to email your Senator and Representative about it.

Libertas Institute opposes this bill

Staff review of this legislation finds that it violates our principles and should be opposed.

Should a person have a “duty to assist” somebody in need, to the point that failure to do so leads to criminal charges?

Under current law, such a person would not be prosecuted. However, Representative Brian King has sponsored House Bill 170 which would make it a criminal offense for a person to not call 911 in an emergency involving a serious bodily injury if they are able to do so.

Allowing a prosecutor to later seek punishment for a person who made a bad moral judgment, but who did not necessarily intend to aid in the continued injury of the person, is a bad policy decision that unnecessarily criminalizes Utahns who find themselves in such a circumstance.

 

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