Traveller arrested for smuggling 1 pound of ground coffee into Utah

Sam Bennington is an avid explorer of the world. Having been to four different continents, 14 different countries and 30 states, Bennington has seen quite a lot.

One state that Bennington has not been to is Utah.

With it being only 15 hours away, he’s shocked he has never been there before. However, unlike all his previous travels, this one featured a major roadblock.

While crossing state borders from Denver, Bennington was arrested for smuggling Starbucks blonde roast ground coffee into Utah.

With its large Mormon population, Utah has austere restrictions on caffeine and alcohol. While coffee shops may be legal in Utah, in 2014, the state enacted a law punishing any voyager for bringing outside caffeine into the state for the protection of public health.

In the two years since the passage of the caffeine bill, it is reported that roughly 67 percent of people behind bars in the state are there because of this bill.

Bennington, upon arrest, was confused by the charges and questioned the police’s intent of enforcing a ridiculous law.

“Wait, you’re arresting me for a Starbucks bag? What kind of state is this?” Bennington asked while being handcuffed. “It hasn’t even been made–it’s basically just dirt at this point. You can’t even enjoy it like that.”

After breaking state law, Bennington is facing a minimum five-year prison sentence for his actions. However, with all the evidence stacked up against him, Bennington maintains his innocence.  

“I never meant to use those coffee grounds on any citizens, my only purpose was to make coffee in my hotel room,” Bennington said. “However, I would like to reiterate how unnecessary and hypocritical this law is, especially for a state that already has coffee.”

Former Salt Lake City Mayor Ralph Becker Jr. was in office when the bill was introduced, and while he sympathizes with Bennington’s concerns, he still feels the bill does good for Utah.

“Bennington sounds like an upstanding individual, but he must understand that Utahans are afraid of most things that are fun,” Becker said. “All you have to do is avoid caffeine, alcohol, sex, breathing, fun and diversity. Otherwise, welcome to Utah.”