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Sean D. Reyes
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AG Reyes Congratulates AAGs on Nominations as Finalists for 3rd District Juvenile Court

SALT LAKE CITY April 20, 2017 – Attorney General Sean Reyes released the following statement congratulating Utah Attorney General Division Director Susan Eisenman and Section Director Annette Jan for their nomination by the Third Judicial District Nominating Commission as two of the five finalists from whom the Governor will select the next juvenile court judge in the third district:

“It is a testament to the extremely high caliber of attorneys in the Utah Office of Attorney General that both Susan Eisenman and Annette Jan have been selected as finalists among so many qualified applicants. Those of us who have the privilege of working with Susan and Annette on a daily basis, both in and out of our office, are not surprised in the least by their selection,” said Attorney General Sean Reyes. “I commend the nomination commission for advancing both their names to the Governor.  

“From the early days of her career as an attorney guardian ad litem, representing children in child abuse and neglect cases to her more than 20 years with the office and in leadership positions, Susan Eisenman has demonstrated an innate ability to assimilate complex issues, advocate for her clients and lead her fellow attorneys in managing heavy caseloads and sensitive issues our office often addresses. Similarly, Annette Jan is a respected leader, experienced and highly skilled attorney who goes above and beyond to help her coworkers, clients, and the office. Despite the serious and challenging cases she handles, she is known by her coworkers to always lead with grace and good humor. Both are excellent attorneys, hardworking public servants, and incredible assets to Utah.”

AAG Susan Eisenman is Division Director of the State Agency Counsel Division.

Susan Eisenman has spent the last twenty years working as an Assistant Attorney General for the State of Utah, representing various agencies within the State, and currently, serves as Division Director of the State Agency Counsel Division and as counsel to the Governor’s Office of Economic Development.  As an Assistant Attorney General for the Utah Department of Human Services, Susan has had the opportunity to look at social issues from legal, administrative, and policy perspectives. Susan participated in the successful defense of a class action lawsuit against the Division of Services for People with Disabilities (M.A.C. v. Betit) and the successful resolution of a thirteen-year-long class action lawsuit against the Division of Child and Family Services (David C. v. Leavitt). Prior to joining the Attorney General’s Office, Susan was an attorney guardian ad litem, representing children in child abuse and neglect cases, and, before that, provided parental defense for persons accused of child abuse and neglect.

AAG Annette Jan is Section Chief of the Child Protection where she works with the Children’s Justice Centers. 

Annette Jan has served as the Section Chief of the Child Protection division for over five years. She works with the Children’s Justice Centers and attends the Children’s Justice Center multi-discipline staffing for Salt Lake City each week. In 2012, the Children’s Justice Center of Salt Lake County selected Annette to receive the “Professional of the Year” award for her outstanding services to child victims of crime served at the Children’s Justice Center. As the leader in her section, she has a busy schedule filled with administrative duties, working with DCFS, and drafting Protective Supervision Services petitions for each attorney. Prior to becoming an attorney, Annette worked for the Davis County Attorney’s Office as a victim advocate and for DCFS as a social service worker holding multiple positions including intake worker, child protective services investigator, on-going worker, and foster care worker. She also specialized in serious physical and sexual abuse cases as a CPS investigator.   


AG Reyes’ Statement on Child Abuse Prevention/Sexual Assault Awareness Month

SALT LAKE CITY April 17, 2017 – Attorney General Sean Reyes released the following statement on Child Abuse Prevention Month and Sexual Assault Awareness Month, including a highlight of the Children’s Justice Centers and the important multidisciplinary work they do to help children affected by abuse recover:

“April is both National Prevent Child Abuse Month and Sexual Assault Awareness Month. Both speak to issues important to ensuring our state’s many communities are safe for all.  The Utah Attorney General’s Office (AGO) works tirelessly to stop sexual assault and child abuse and bring perpetrators to justice.  

“The Utah AGO is proud to support and work alongside community partners to break the cycle of abuse and prevent sexual assaults from taking place in domestic situations as well as work and campus environments. From our own Attorney General-sponsored One With Courage initiative to numerous efforts from NGOs, corporate and non-profit partners, we can make a difference by continuing to educate and raise awareness of the horror of all types of abuse while doing everything to lift victims and survivors to a safe place. 

“In addition, the Utah AGO has prioritized the protection of children from all forms of abuse. Administered under the AGO, the Children’s Justice Centers (CJCs) are child-focused, facility-based, safe environments in which representatives from law enforcement, child protection, prosecution, mental health, medical services, and victim advocacy work together to conduct interviews and make team decisions about investigation, prosecution, and treatment of child abuse cases.  

“In an average year, Utah’s CJCs conduct 4,500 interviews, handle 5,500 cases, and serve as many as 15,000 people. They are an incredible asset to our communities and to our state. With over 25 years of experience, the CJCs’ multidisciplinary approach to supporting child victims impacted by crime and abuse helps children recover from the trauma of abuse.  

“The Utah CJC Program includes 20 locations serving communities across the state. The result is a more complete understanding of case issues and the most effective child and family focused system response possible.

“One of the most effective ways we can prevent child abuse is to ensure parents have the knowledge, skills, and resources needed to care for their children. Research shows families are strengthened when there is nurturing and attachment, knowledge about parenting and child and youth development, parental resilience, social connections, and concrete supports for parents.  As we strengthen families, we strengthen our communities, and we protect children from abuse and sexual assault.” 

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Statewide Crisis Line, Suicide Prevention Efforts Moving Forward

Commission will work towards a single, statewide mental health crisis line

SALT LAKE CITY April 11, 2017 – With Attorney General Sean Reyes, Utah legislators, and mental health professionals, and supporters looking on, Governor Gary Herbert ceremonially signed SB 37, as well as two amendments to suicide prevention statutes, moving the state one step closer to a statewide crisis line. Sponsored by Utah State Senator Daniel Thatcher and Representative Steve Eliason, along with co-sponsors Representative Carol Spackman Moss and Senator Curt Bramble, the new law creates a commission to consolidate local mental health crisis lines. By integrating existing efforts into a single crisis line, the commission is tasked to create a single statewide line connecting individuals in a mental health crisis with a mental or behavioral health professional easier.

“Today, we move towards a statewide solution for all citizens. Over the past two years we have been fortunate to work with a full team of state leaders and agencies to launch the SafeUT Crisis & Safety smartphone app for Utah students,” said Attorney General Sean Reyes. “This service has offered direct access to the world-renowned mental health crisis responders at the University Neuropsychiatric Institute (UNI). Since its launch, thousands of Utah students have reached out to UNI for confidential and anonymous two-way communication with crisis counselors which has resulted in saved lives and healthier youth. State legislators Sen. Daniel Thatcher and Rep. Steve Eliason, sponsors of the Student Safety and Crisis Line Commission, have also led the efforts for a statewide Mental Health Crisis Line Commission. Today, as Governor Herbert signs their legislation, Utah is positioned to continue to lead the nation in this critically important response to those in mental health crisis.”

“The end goal of this legislation is simply that a plea for help will never go unanswered,” said Utah Representative Steve Eliason.

“I have never known a world without 911,” said Senator Daniel Thatcher.  “In fact, it is difficult to even imagine not knowing where to turn for physical crisis services. Yet, almost 50 years later, that is exactly where we are with Mental Health. We now know that a behavioral or mental health crisis can be just as dangerous, and requires a very different type of response.  Utah’s Mental Health Crisis Line Commission is the answer we have been looking for.”

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AG Sean Reyes Statement on National Crime Victims’ Rights Week

SALT LAKE CITY April 5, 2017 – Today, Attorney General Sean Reyes released the below statement on National Crime Victims’ Rights Week.

“Sadly, there are individuals and communities in our state impacted every day by the devastating effects of crime. Protecting Utahns from criminal conduct in all its many forms has always been a top priority for the Utah Attorney General’s Office. We are equally committed to stopping crime whether it be child abuse, white-collar crime, identity theft, human trafficking, Internet predation or more.

“A significant but often unheralded part of our crime fighting effort is assuring that victims know their rights and what services are available to them. As their rights are promoted and protected, victims are empowered to recover. In doing so, they can re-take control of their lives and their future, promoting healing and strength.  Survivors who are provided support and understanding will often feel safe enough to talk about their victimization. They are more also likely to seek needed services, and participate in the criminal justice process.

“The AG Office multidisciplinary response model, involving collaboration among victim service professionals, prosecutors and law enforcement, medical and mental health providers, and community organizations is essential to reach and serve all victims—including high-risk populations and minorities. Every year, the AG Office is proud to work with, protect, educate and support victims across our state.

“This week, as we recognize National Crime Victims’ Rights Week, we renew our commitment to a victim service and criminal justice response model that assists all victims of crime. We express our sincere gratitude and appreciation to those community members, victim service providers, and criminal justice professionals who work to improve our statewide response to all victims of crime so that they may find relevant assistance, support, justice, healing and peace.”

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AG Sean Reyes’ International Women’s Day Statement

 SALT LAKE CITY March 8, 2017 – Attorney General Sean Reyes released the following statement for International Women’s Day:  

“We each owe an incredible debt of gratitude to the women in our lives for their influence in shaping who we are. And yet, we have much to do to properly empower women and girls to achieve their ambitions, gain access to the halls of power, to build businesses and families, and to have an equal voice regarding issues that impact our nation, state, and communities.

“From the beginning of my term as Attorney General, our efforts to attract the best and brightest have resulted in hiring and promoting some of the most skilled attorneys and leaders I know, including Chief Civil Deputy Bridget Romano, Chief of Staff Missy Larsen, Director of Finance and Administration Kim Schmeling, and Executive Assistant Cecilia Lesmes, as well as numerous other leaders and professionals throughout the Office.  Utah is daily improved because of the many capable women in our office.  

“Personally, I have deep gratitude for my tutu wahine and abuela (grandmothers). Similarly, I was blessed with a mother, whose early mornings and late nights were spent teaching our family enduring values of hard work, honor and a commitment to the underserved, while she devoted her days to living those principles in her career as an educator. In many ways, it is because of her that I married a brilliant woman, a friend and equal, whose qualities of strength and conviction challenge me daily to keep up with her. I look forward to the day when my daughter, herself a brilliant, talented, and beautiful individual, has the same opportunities as my sons.”


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AG Sean Reyes’ National Consumer Protection Week Statement

SALT LAKE CITY  March 8, 2017 – Attorney General Sean Reyes released the following statement for National Consumer Protection Week:  

“We want all Utahns to be protected from frauds, scams, and schemes. In the AG’s Office, we are fortunate to work with Utah’s Division of Consumer Protection and the Department of Public Safety, with our federal partners at the SEC, FBI, and US Attorneys Office and our local law enforcement partners at county and city agencies across the state to thwart white collar criminals.  Consumers should regularly review the Utah Division of Consumer Protection website that provides tips and advisories regarding the many scams that regularly impact Utahns.

“As Attorney General, fighting fraud has always been a critical priority for my office. I encourage consumers to stay informed and protect themselves by checking before you invest or send money to a stranger. In my experience, the best deterrent to fraud and scams is an educated and alert consumer.  Before investing in any opportunity—whether it comes over the internet, from a trusted friend or family member, or by a door-to-door salesman—please take the time to check with either the White Collar Crime Offender Registry, a tool unique to Utah that allows consumers to verify before they invest, or the Division of Consumer Protection. If it sounds too good to be true, it probably is.”

For further information, please visit the White Collar Crime Offender Registry online or the Division of Consumer Protection website.

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Utah Attorney General's Office

AG Reyes’ Statement on the Verdict in the John Swallow Case

SALT LAKE CITY March 2, 2017 – Attorney General Sean Reyes released the following statement regarding the verdict in the trial of former Utah Attorney General John Swallow:

“I reaffirm my belief in the integrity of our legal system and the importance of constitutional safeguards such as due process and the right to a jury that protect us all as Americans. I have great respect for Judge Hruby-Mills and her careful and judicious management of this matter. I also greatly appreciate the service of the jury and respect its verdict.

“Regardless of the outcome of any given case, we in the Office of the Utah Attorney General support our criminal justice system and its role in protecting citizens and preserving liberties.  We thank all those who serve the public in the criminal justice process from investigators, prosecutors, public defenders, victim advocates, jurors, and corrections personnel to judicial and courtroom staff.

“Regardless of how you feel about the outcome of this case, we should be appreciative of a legal system in America that is not perfect but is among the best in the world. Our belief in and deference to the Rule of Law is the bedrock of that system.”


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Attorney General Reyes’ Washington and Lincoln Day Statement

SALT LAKE CITY February 20, 2017 – Attorney General Sean Reyes released the following Washington and Lincoln Day statement:  

As we celebrate the birthdays of two of our greatest presidents—George Washington and Abraham Lincoln—we can be grateful for the system of government they toiled to leave for us and future generations. Though the current political climate may at times feel heated and contentious, the recent transition of power in the White House was peaceful and has been so since the time of our nation’s founding. My occasional travels abroad have reinforced to me the miracle that is our Constitution, as well as the importance of our commitment as Americans to support it, however diverse we may be. We are blessed to witness power change from one American president to the next, without guns, tanks or armies to enforce such succession. This is in sharp contrast to the unrest and bloodshed over regime changes in many parts of the world. Again, we have much to be thankful for in celebrating these leaders of our past. Presidents Washington and Lincoln faced some of our nation’s greatest tests and we are the beneficiaries of their sweat and blood.”

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AG Reyes Congratulates Judge Holmberg on His Appointment and Confirmation to Utah’s Third District Court

Kent Holmberg

SALT LAKE CITY February 16, 2017 – Attorney General Sean Reyes released the following statement on Utah Senate’s confirmation of Judge Kent Holmberg, a former Utah Assistant Attorney General, to Utah’s Third District Court.

“We congratulate Judge Holmberg on his appointment and confirmation to the Third District Court and express our confidence in his character, ability, and judgment in that capacity,” said Attorney General Sean Reyes. “Given the caliber of attorneys within our ranks, we are honored but not surprised to see one of our own take the bench.” 

Judge Holmberg worked in the Utah Attorney General’s Office as an assistant attorney general starting in 2012. Prior to his service for the state, he was a trial attorney in Salt Lake City for several years after nearly two decades of legal practice in Minnesota. Holmberg has also taught at various Minnesota state colleges and universities on subjects ranging from evidence law to Indian law and trial practice. Holmberg was formerly a certified public accountant.

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AG Reyes Thanks AAG Laura Lockhart for Years of Service

Laura Lockhart is retiring from the Utah Attorney General’s Office after 30 years of service.

SALT LAKE CITY February 15, 2017 – After 30 years with the Utah Attorney General’s Office, Laura Lockhart will retire this month. Laura was honored by a reception at the Department of Environmental Quality, where she has been the state-agency counsel for many years.

Attorney General Sean Reyes released the following statement on Laura’s retirement today:

“Laura has been an amazing asset to Utah and the Utah Attorney General’s office, where she has served as a tireless public servant over a distinguished legal career. Additionally, Laura has been a steady and guiding hand in the development and implementation of our state open records laws, helping our office navigate the difficult balance of transparency and privacy while also fulfilling our mission to provide the outstanding legal services to our state clients.

“On a personal note, Laura is known throughout our office for her kindness, her devotion and sincerity, and her willingness to step up to take on additional work when the need arises. She leaves a legacy of grateful friends and colleagues, and I wish her all the best in her future endeavors.”

Laura has represented the Utah Department of Environmental Quality for thirty years. She has worked primarily the Division of Radiation Control and Water  Quality,  but also specializes in administrative procedures and government records law. Laura is a graduate of the University of Utah and attended law school at Yale. In addition to her duties at the DEQ, Laura has always gone above and beyond in sharing her time and expertise assisting other attorneys in the Utah Attorney General’s Office with requests under the Utah Government Records Management Act, or GRAMA, and has always been deeply committed to government openness and accountability. 

Several colleagues expressed their appreciation for Laura when they heard she was retiring, including Blaine Ferguson, who worked closely with Laura on GRAMA.

“Laura is one of the most loyal and dedicated public servants I have ever known,” said Blaine Ferguson.  “When the “call to arms” is heard, she willingly offers her help, even if she is already busy with a heavy workload and the timing is inconvenient.  Furthermore, because of her commitment to public service, she has often volunteered to take on projects on her own initiative.  She is one of those good persons who sees a need and then addresses it, without being asked.  Even when a task is difficult or awkward, Laura accepts it without flinching, because she sincerely cares about the Attorney General’s Office, her clients, and the interests of the people of Utah.

“Laura has had a long and honorable career in the Attorney General’s Office.  Assigned to advise and represent the Department of Environment Quality, she has provided faithful service to her client agency through many challenging times.  But that has only been her “day job.”  Somehow she has always found time (often well into the evening) to serve in other areas, particularly in the legal minefield of government records law.  She was a key player in drafting Utah’s original Government Records Access and Management Act (GRAMA), and the proper classification and handling of government records has continued to be one of her passions for over 25 years. 

“Laura has several gifts that have helped her make an invaluable contribution to the work of the Attorney General’s Office: tirelessness, a brilliant legal mind, a keen sense of ethics, honesty, candor, common sense and a great sense of humor.  And, on top of it all, she has admirable personal values, fun outside interests (such as birding) and a love for her family that round her out as a person.  I am grateful to have had the opportunity to work closely with Laura for many years.  She has been a great mentor, a tremendous help, and a true friend.  I wish her the very best.”

Laura is also an amateur astronomer, photographer, and an avid bird watcher, or birder, and has served on the Tracy Aviary board. In addition, Laura was one of the founding members of the Open Classroom community school. Laura is a devoted mom to her daughter Maisie and constant companion to her canine friends.

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