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Dell Schanze Earns Jail Time

Being reckless while driving in pursuit of "fun for the kids" started out the ordeal but it was what he said afterwards, in media interviews, that actually put nails in his coffin of conviction.

This story came out on Aug 28, 2009 in the Salt Lake Tribune.

'Super Dell' guilty in reckless driving case, sentenced to 10 days

by Donald W. Meyers

The Salt Lake Tribune
Updated: 08/28/2009 10:00:25 PM MDT

Saratoga Springs "Super" Dell Schanze's skills as an over-the-top computer pitchman failed him Friday in justice court.

Schanze, who represented himself in his trial for reckless driving and seat-belt violations, was sentenced to 10 days in the Utah County jail, fined $670 and placed on two years' unsupervised probation.

"I didn't do anything wrong," Schanze told reporters as he was put into the back of a police car for the ride to the jail in Spanish Fork.

But justice court Judge Keith M. Stoney saw it differently.

"This was not even a close case," Stoney said. He said Schanze's driving on Aug. 18, 2008, was reckless enough to cause a state motor vehicle inspector to run off the road for fear of being hit. Plus, Schanze admitted in a television interview that he was a "lawbreaker." The interview was aired in court.

Schanze was seen abruptly jerking his car back and forth in a construction zone on Redwood Road. Schanze claimed he rocked the car for the amusement of his children, two of whom were sharing a single seat belt.

Schanze, police say, was not wearing a belt either.

Prosecutor Lindsay Jarvis said more than a fine was needed to teach Schanze a lesson. She pointed to his past record, which included a conviction for giving false information to police, along with arrests for disorderly conduct and resisting arrest.

"This isn't his first time around the block," Jarvis said, asking that Schanze be sent to jail for at least five days.

Jarvis said Schanze had contradicted himself several times, was "a compulsive liar" and that his only witness was his wife, who said she supported her husband.

During the trial Schanze accused Jarvis of attempting to inflame the media by bringing up a weapons charge that had been dismissed. He also charged that Jarvis had altered a court transcript, an accusation Stoney warned was slanderous.

Read the full story here.

by dmeyers@sltrib.com

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