The Ask. Ponder. Educate. [X]. event on Thursday, Oct. 26, was “Utah Court of Appeals, Live Court.” The specific case discussed was State v. Weaver. The case was about George Weaver who killed someone in a fatal car accident when he was high on oxycodone.
Live Court occurs annually on the APEX stage, giving audience members a firsthand experience of what a real court case can look like.
Judge Ryan Harris presided over the case, accompanied by Judge Ryan Tenney and Judge Amy Oliver. Emily Sopp represented the state, and Nick Turner represented Weaver.
Tenney said that Weaver was “incapable of operating the vehicle.”
Both Turner and Sopp had a chance to speak, and at the end, Turner requested time for a rebuttal.
Sopp explained that Weaver was swerving in and out of lanes by a great distance. When taking his exit, Weaver exceeded the speed limit. He collided with a car stopped at a red light, causing a multi-car accident that led to the death of Kylie Park, 20. Park was heading into Zion National Park to go hiking when the collision occurred.
When discussing the on-scene report, Tenney said that Weaver withheld important information from law enforcement.
“[Weaver] did not tell people on the scene that he took oxy,” said Tenney. “This is suggestive of his knowledge at the scene.” Only when the investigators got Weaver’s blood work back, they could see he had taken oxycodone.
Harris explained that people who take oxycodone often can develop an immunity to it and not exhibit obvious signs of impairment.
After Sopp argued, Turner was allowed his rebuttal. He recounted everything that was discussed and questioned the importance of certain details.
Live Court concluded with the judges explaining that they will issue a written opinion as soon as possible.
To view the Live Court case, visit the SUULive1 YouTube channel.
The next A.P.E.X. event will occur on Nov. 9 at 11:30 a.m. in the Hunter Alumni Center. Guest lecturer John de Graaf will present “Stewart Udall: The Politics of Beauty.”
Author: Christina Schweiss
Photographer: Joseph Roberts
Editor: Nick Stein