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Top Utah Criminal Lawyers

Work With an Outstanding Utah Criminal Attorney Today

If you or a family member have recently been accused or charged with a criminal offense in your state, such as theft or DUI, you probably are concerned about what will happen in the near future. You likely are wondering who will be willing to listen to your side of the events, and you want to know what your rights are and how your job and family may be affected. Most importantly you want to know who you can turn to for help.

At the first opportunity, you should consult an experienced attorney. This will help you avoid making mistakes and can also help to ease the consequences that often come with criminal charges. Now is time for a free consultation with a Utahcriminal lawyer who has a proven track record in criminal cases just like the one you or a loved one may be facing. You have the right to remain silent and protect your interests, but the sooner you meet with a criminal attorney the better off you will be. Remember, just because a person is charged with a state offense does not mean that they will be found guilty. Hiring a good criminal lawyer can help protect you and your family and will provide you with information on the rights and options that you may have. Many attorneys will even offer free advice during the initial meeting so that you can decide the next steps you wish to take.

Are You Looking for an Experience Criminal Lawyer?

We have an experienced and professional team of criminal attorneys that are well-versed in many areas of crime from domestic violence to fraud to DUI. We have capable lawyers who specialize in areas of criminal defense like theft, aggravated assault, manslaughter, sexual offenses, weapons charges and much more.

The sooner you act the better. It doesn't matter if you are actually facing charges or you simply fear that there will be repercussions for an act in your past, the longer it takes to get legal counsel, the fewer options you will have. Our Utah criminal attorneys have the expertise to fully understand how state law works and they will be able to offer valuable advice to you during your first meeting.

Build Up a Strong Defense for a DUI Charge

One of the most common charges at the state level is a DUI. Though consequences of this action can vary, many times they will include a night in jail, alcohol education classes, heavy fines and even a suspended driver's license. A smart move is to find a Utah criminal attorney who has the expertise and knowledge in DUI cases like the one you may be facing. Our experienced lawyers can help to find out if you qualify as a first time offender, to explain the fines and other penalties that you could face, and how you can plan, together, the defense strategy. They will also help you to understand how this type of charge may affect other parts of your life like your auto insurance and even your job.

Good Lawyers are Focused on Specific Areas of Law

Our team of experienced criminal defense attorneys concentrates on certain areas of the law. This helps them to gain thorough knowledge of their legal specialty and also helps them build up strong track records in specific types of cases. They will also have comprehensive information about particular state laws and know how they relate to your personal case. Our lawyers will use this background to formulate a solid defense strategy for your individual case. We help to match you with the perfect lawyer for your unique situation.

What to Expect From Your Criminal Lawyer

When you first meet with your criminal lawyer for a consultation you will need to discuss the facts of your case. Your attorney will be able to share their own expertise of the law and how it will relate to the charges being brought against you. You should always be as candid as you can be with your lawyer and be willing to ask them questions. Your attorney will make sure to keep your information confidential and will strive to represent your best interests. It is important for you to follow any advice that is given to you by your attorney and to understand that patience may be needed.

A Strong Reputation Will Count

Our lawyers belong to a variety of professional groups like the National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers. You will be able to track the success rate of our attorneys throughout their careers which can give you peace of mind. Our attorneys have been thoroughly screened in order to ensure they are providing top notch legal counsel.

You Can Trust Our Attorneys

The perfect criminal lawyer for you will be the one who is going to advocate for your best interests. They will be able to earn your trust, adhere to the highest ethical standards and provide you with that extra boost of confidence that is always needed in these situations.

Our lawyers will know the common methods of defense for you and will handle your case with the urgency and care that you need. Avoid mistakes early on in the criminal process by choosing an attorney quickly. It is important to have the trustworthy legal support that comes from professional counsel. Call one of our qualified attorneys today!

Are You Facing Criminal Charges in Utah?

The Utah Criminal Code is a valuable resource containing all the statutes and provisions that pertain to criminal offenses in Utah. This extensive section of Utah’s written laws describes the elements required for an action to be considered a crime and even shares some information about what may or may not constitute defenses to certain particular offenses. However, most people need to acquire a basic understanding of Utah criminal law before attempting to understand the specifics of the Utah Criminal Code.

All crimes in Utah are divided into broad categories, including offenses against the person, offenses against property, and others. These designations help structure the Utah Criminal Code and break it into identifiable sections. What these general categories do not tell you is how serious a certain crime is. That information is set forth within the pertinent statute itself.

First of all, every criminal offense is classified as either a felony or a misdemeanor, with felonies being the more serious crimes. It is important to note that many crimes – such as arson and theft – can be charged as either a felony or a misdemeanor depending on its egregiousness or the degree of its harm to victims or society. Specific statutes indicate the degree at which an offense is considered a felony or misdemeanor.

Felonies and misdemeanors are then more narrowly classified into either degrees (for felonies) or classes (for misdemeanors). Felonies are charged in the first, second, or third degree. As the most serious of all crimes, first-degree felonies are punishable by life in prison.

Because capital punishment is legal in Utah, those convicted of particularly heinous crimes can be punished by the death penalty. The potential for this highest of punishments is not determined within the general provision for first-degree felonies in Utah but, instead, it is specified within the statute that addresses particular crimes, such as very serious murder charges.

Misdemeanors are divided into classes. The most serious of these are Class A misdemeanors, which have a potential punishment of one year in jail. As less serious misdemeanors, Class B and Class C offenses are punishable by up to six months and 90 days in jail, respectively.

Even the most comprehensive information about the criminal laws of Utah cannot tell you the most important part of criminal defense, which is how these definitions and descriptions will be applied to your specific case. That determination requires legal experience and in-depth knowledge of the facts and circumstances surrounding your case. The person best qualified to provide you with this advice is a Utah criminal defense attorney.

Locate a reliable and knowledgeable Utah defense attorney here.

Five Common Crimes Charged in Utah

Although certain crimes are more common in Utah than others, that fact does not mean being charged with these offenses is more serious or substantial than other crimes. All criminal charges require the advice of a qualified criminal justice attorney in Utah. If you need information about crimes other than those mentioned below, or if you require advice regarding your specific circumstances, you should be certain to contact a Utah attorney from Criminal Lawyer.

Burglary

In Utah, the elements of burglary are straightforward. In fact, the applicable statute not only explains exactly what qualifies as burglary in the state, but it does so without excess information or the use of legalease. Under Utah law, burglary is defined as unlawfully entering or remaining on the property of another person with the intent to commit a crime. The crimes that qualify for burglary in Utah include any felony, theft, assault, lewd behavior, sexual battery, and voyeurism.

Additionally, Utah law makes it clear that charges of burglary are separate from charges for any other crime the individual may commit while he or she is trespassing. This means the crime of burglary simply requires trespassing with an intent to commit a crime. If a crime actually comes to fruition, the defendant could be charged with a separate criminal offense. However, criminal lawyers in Utah who defend burglary charges, can usually represent a client in defense of these other charges.

Burglary can be either a third or second-degree offense in Utah, and a person convicted of a third-degree offense will face a maximum sentence of five years in prison. The determinative factor is whether or not the burglary took place in a residential building. Burglary of a dwelling or residential building is a second-degree offense which carries a higher penalty – up to 15 years in prison.

Find a top Utah burglary defense lawyer.

Assault

In Utah, assault covers all criminal actions that threaten, cause, or attempt to cause injury to another person. This includes both physical injury and offensive contact – and assault is often punishable by a jail or prison sentence.

By default, assault is charged as a Class B misdemeanor. If convicted, an individual faces a maximum sentence of six months in jail. However, certain aggravating circumstances heighten both the charges and the potential sentence. Assault is charged as a Class A misdemeanor if the act causes substantial bodily injury to the victim or if the assault is against a pregnant woman whom the defendant knew or should have known was pregnant. Conviction of a Class A misdemeanor is punishable by up to one year in jail.

In addition to specific situations that qualify as Class A misdemeanors, assault of certain victims can result in a more significant sentence. These victims include:

  • School employees
  • Members of the military when they are in uniform
  • Enforcement officers, including school officers and security guards, in addition to police officers
  • Corrections officers or prison employees, if the assault is committed by a prisoner
  • Each of these offenses carries a separate minimum sentence based on whether the act is a first or subsequent assault offense. For example, assault of a military member in uniform requires at least 90 days in jail if it is a first offense and 180 days for any subsequent offense.

    Find the best assault defense attorney Utah.

    DUI

    It is illegal in Utah – as it is in all states – to operate a motor vehicle when you are under the influence of drugs or alcohol. Known as driving under the influence, or simply DUI, this is a statutory crime in Utah. This means that, in order to win a conviction, the prosecutor need not prove anything other than that the blood alcohol concentration (BAC) of the defendant was above the legal limit. While many people presume this fact makes defense against a DUI charge impossible, a Utah criminal attorney experienced in DUI defense can build a robust and applicable defense against these charges.

    The legal BAC limit for Utah drivers at or above the age of 21 is 0.08% or higher. Those under 21 must have not have any alcohol in their system. Because Utah is a zero tolerance state, even trace amounts of alcohol will result in a charge of DUI for drivers under 21.

    Both administrative penalties – such as loss of driving privileges – and criminal punishments will result from a DUI conviction. The severity of both depends upon whether the driver has prior convictions for DUI and his or her BAC level. Multiple DUI offenses and a BAC over 0.16% will earn more substantial sentences that include imprisonment, longer loss of license, and higher fines. Unlike most states, Utah law does not specify minimum jail terms for DUI convictions, but the court may decide to set a term of incarceration based on the facts of a specific case.

    Because the sentencing process for DUI in Utah is not standardized, it becomes even more important to have an excellent DUI attorney as an integral part of your defense.

    Find a top Utah DUI lawyer.

    Arson

    Most people know that the intentional burning of a building is arson; however, what many people do not realize is that arson is one of the most serious crimes contemplated in criminal law. It is a property crime, which means the intended harm is aimed at property rather than at a person or society, but it still carries the potential for a hefty sentence. Because of the seriousness of this criminal offense, those facing arson charges are well advised to hire a felony lawyer in Utah.

    Of course, the crime of arson is committed by causing or starting a fire with the intention to damage all or a portion of a property. It is applicable to both the property of other people and that of the defendant in Utah; however, arson charges are not restricted to fires alone. Anyone who causes an explosion with the intention of causing property damage is also guilty of arson.

    The severity of arson charges are often based on the extent of property damage caused by the explosion or fire. For instance:

  • If the damage is valued at less than $300, then the offense is a Class B misdemeanor, punishable by up to six months in jail.
  • If the damage is between $300 and $1,000, the charge will be a Class A misdemeanor, punishable by up to one year in jail.
  • If value of the damage is between $1,000 and $5,000, if an individual suffers bodily injury as a result of the fire or explosion, or if the fire/explosion endangers human life, then the charge will be a third-degree felony, punishable by up to five years in prison.
  • If the damage exceeds $5,000 in value, or if an individual suffers substantial bodily injury as a result of the fire or explosion, or if the fire/explosion is caused with the intention of defrauding an insurance provider, the crime is a second-degree felony, punishable by up to 15 years in prison.
  • Find the best Utah arson lawyers.

    Murder

    In Utah, the term “criminal homicide” refers to any unlawful killing of another human being. There is a common misconception that criminal homicide and murder are the same thing, but this is not true. Sometimes, although a death occurs which is unlawful, but it was not intentional on the part of the actor. Such killings are considered manslaughter under the state laws of Utah. In other cases, however, one person causes the death of another with either the intention or knowledge that his or her actions might result in the death of the victim. In these instances and certain other narrow circumstances – referred to as felony murder – criminal homicide is murder. According to Utah law, criminal homicide is murder when:

  • The actor intentionally or knowingly causes the death of the victim
  • The actor behaves in a manner that is dangerous to human life while trying to seriously injure the victim, but such actions result in death
  • The actor behaves in a manner that creates the grave risk of death
  • The actor commits murder during the commission of or flight from a separate felony (This is known as a predicate offense in Utah.)
  • When an actor commits murder during the commission of a predicate offense, that crime is called felony murder. In certain scenarios, felony murder and other egregious murders become heightened offenses under Utah law. This is called aggravated murder, and the charge occurs when:

  • The actor is already in prison when the murder is committed
  • Two or more victims were killed in a single incident or act
  • The actor knowingly creates a risk of death to people other than the actor and victim
  • The murder is committed during the commission of a serious felony, which includes, aggravated robbery, robbery, rape, rape of a child, object rape, object rape of a child, forcible sodomy, sodomy upon a child, forcible sexual abuse, sexual abuse of a child, aggravated sexual abuse of a child, child abuse as defined in Subsection 76-5-109(2)(a), or aggravated sexual assault, aggravated arson, arson, aggravated burglary, burglary, aggravated kidnapping, kidnapping, or child kidnapping
  • The murder was committed in conjunction with an act intended to desecrate or abuse a dead human body
  • The actor committed murder to avoid arrest for a separate crime
  • The murder was committed for hire or in return for payment
  • The actor was previously convicted of murder or other substantially serious charges, either in Utah or another state
  • Aggravated murder in Utah can be punished by capital punishment.

    Find the top murder lawyers in Utah.

    Other Crimes

    Each Utah criminal lawyer included in Criminal Lawyer is prepared to defend a variety of crimes in Utah. Our experience is not limited to the most common crimes in the state. Rather, it extends to defense of federal crimes and appellate level defense. Whether you are seeking a lawyer to defend you against such serious charges as murder, or a less severe misdemeanor such as possession of a controlled substance, we can help.

    Importance of an Experienced Criminal Defense Lawyer

    A person charged with a crime in Utah often faces more consequences than those set forth in the Utah Criminal Code. Ongoing ramifications can include negative effects on personal relationships, friendships, job prospects, and future finances. Individuals who want to mitigate these consequences, and minimize the likelihood of the biggest consequence of all – loss of one’s freedom – should engage an experienced defense attorney in Utah.

    Facing charges for identity theft? Find Utah identity theft lawyers. Charged with robbery? Then you need a Utah robbery lawyer. What if you could be convicted of drug possession? Then you need a Utah drug defense attorney. By engaging a lawyer who has experience in crimes substantially similar to your own, you are more likely to have a strong defense for the charges against you.

    If you don’t know where to turn for defense of criminal charges in Utah, turn to us.

    [Disclaimer – this is not legal advice.]

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