The Appellate Group

State v. Miller

State v. Miller, 2021 UT App 88 (Hagen, J.)


After Defendant was fired, he initiated a civil lawsuit against his former company, which resulted in settlement negotiations. In emails between Defendant and the company’s attorney regarding settlement, Defendant referenced a former co-worker (K.B.). The company’s owner discussed the litigation with K.B. and showed her the emails. Defendant was charged and convicted of criminal stalking. He filed a motion to arrest, which the district court granted, reasoning that there was no basis to believe that Defendant knew or should have known that his emails would be disseminated to K.B. or cause K.B. to have fear or emotional distress. The Utah Court of Appeals reversed the ruling, holding:

  • It was not necessary that Defendant know or should know that the company’s attorney would disseminate the emails to K.B. Defendant’s referencing K.B. in emails he sent to his former employer’s attorney satisfied the broad definition of an act under the criminal stalking statute, and the jury could have inferred that his acts would cause a reasonable person emotional distress.

Read the full court opinion