Salt Lake Criminal Defense Attorney Utah
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Who is the Best Utah Criminal Defense Attorney?

I was contacted recently by a prospective client who was looking for a Utah defense attorney to represent him in a criminal case. He was worried about how a conviction would impact his life, and wanted to have the best criminal defense attorney represent him in the case. He had gotten the idea somewhere that I was the best criminal defense attorney in Utah. I had to explain to him that there really is no single “best” criminal defense attorney in the state.

There are thousands of attorneys actively practicing law in Utah. And a significant number of those attorneys devote at least a part of their practice to defending criminal cases. Given the number of Utah attorneys doing criminal defense work, there will of course be some that are better than others. But even among the top tier criminal defense attorneys in Utah, it is probably not possible to name a single “best” attorney.

There are a range of skills involved in defending criminal cases. But each attorney will have his or her own particular strengths. Rather than asking who the “best” attorney is for your case, perhaps the better question is who is the “right” attorney for your case.

High profile cases and television series often highlight the drama of jury trials. Being able to successfully conduct a jury trial requires a criminal defense lawyer to have a thorough understanding of the Utah Rules of Evidence, the ability to effectively cross-examine the prosecution’s witnesses, the ability to present the defendant’s story through defense witnesses, as well as effective communication skills and the ability to persuade a jury.

But while television series and news media coverage may indicate otherwise, the reality is that jury trials represent only a small part of an effective criminal defense practice. Legal research, motion practice, and negotiations along with a thorough understanding of the overall criminal process from police investigations through potential sentencing hearings and probation all contribute to a criminal defense lawyer’s ability to achieve the best results for a client.

Finding the Right Criminal Defense Lawyer in Utah

If you have been charged with a crime in Utah, choosing the right criminal defense attorney to represent you may be the most important decision you make. Based in Salt Lake City, criminal defense attorney Stephen Howard represents clients in criminal cases throughout Utah. His experience ranges from defending clients charged with aggravated murder to DUI, and virtually everything in between. Contact us today to schedule an initial consultation.


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  • Selected Victories
  • Criminal Defense Trial AttorneyNot Guilty - Client was charged with aggravated assault for alleged attack using broken bottle as a weapon. Despite the testimony of numerous prosecution witnesses, thorough defense investigation to support a self-defense claim resulted in acquittal by jury at trial.
  • Drug Crimes Defense Attorney Utah Dismissed - Client facing first-degree felony drug distribution charge and potential life in prison. Charges were based on allegations that client had sold drugs to an undercover police officer, then made a full confession. Successful mitigation work resulted in negotiated offer of misdemeanor plea-in-abeyance and ultimate dismissal of case.
  • Utah Probation Attorney Released - Client absconded for more than 10 years from felony probation with Adult Probation and Parole. At an order to show cause hearing, prosecutor argued aggressively for prison. Based on effective mitigation efforts by the defense, the judge agreed to release client without further jail.
  • Violent Crimes Assalt Defense UtahDismissed at Preliminary Hearing - Client charged with aggravated robbery and facing life in prison. Full case analysis and consultation with client allowed the development of a strong defense strategy. Effective cross-examination of the alleged victim at the preliminary hearing resulted in an outright dismissal of all charges by the judge.
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  • What to Do When Arrested for DUI What should I do if I am arrested for DUI? - Many DUI cases begin as minor traffic stops. But the consequences of a DUI conviction are much more serious than an ordinary traffic citation. If you are pulled over for a suspected DUI, you have specific important constitutional and statutory rights that can protect your. . . .
  • Utah Statewide Warrant Search How do I find out if I have an outstanding warrant? - If you believe you may have an outstanding arrest warrant in Utah, a criminal defense attorney can access the Utah statewide warrant system and help you find the best. . . .
Best Criminal Defense Strategy

You want the best defense. Agressive is good. But results ultimately are what really matter. Creating an effective strategy for defending against criminal prosecution requires a thorough understanding of statutes, case law, and evidentiary and procedural rules. A successful outcome is more likely when....

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Salt Lake Criminal Defense Attorney Profile Utah

Defending against a criminal prosecution in Utah is a job that has to be done right the first time. Choosing the right attorney to defend you can be the most important decision you make. Our attorneys have extensive experience handling some of the most serious felony and misdemeanor charges on the books in Utah. No matter what charges you are facing, we can help....

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Conviction Consequences in Utah Criminal Prosecutions

Jail time, prison time, thousands of dollars in fines, and the lifetime collateral consequences of having a criminal conviction on your record - all of these and more are at stake when you are facing criminal prosecution in Utah. Understanding what is at risk is critical. Even so-called "minor" misdemeanor cases can have serious consequences....

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Utah Criminal Defense Attorney - Hope

Facing criminal prosecution in Utah can feel like your world is collapsing. But there are reasons to remain hopeful, and there are things you can do right now that can help increase the odds of a successful outcome. An experienced criminal defense attorney can help you evaluate the various options you have, and can help you....

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Serving Salt Lake, Davis, Weber, Utah, Cache, Tooele, Summit, Box Elder, and Wasatch Counties, and all of Utah.

Attorney Stephen Howard practices as part of the Canyons Law Group, LLC and Stephen W. Howard, PC.

Offices in Salt Lake and Davis Counties
340 East 400 South, Suite 25, Salt Lake City, UT 84111
952 S. Main St., Suite A, Layton, UT 84041

Call now to arrange for a confidential initial consultation with an experienced and effective Utah criminal defense lawyer.

In Salt Lake City, call 801-449-1409.
In Davis County, call 801-923-4345.

Stephen W. Howard, PC

The materials in this website are intended for informational purposes only, and are not legal advice. Viewing or responding to materials in this site does not create an attorney-client relationship. Read Full Disclaimer.