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Can police charge me for possessing a gun if they also find marijuana?

Utah criminal law contains a number of statutes that make it a crime to possess a weapon in certain circumstances.  Two of the most common conditions that can turn an otherwise legal weapon into a criminal charge involve Utah's concealed weapons laws and Utah's controlled substance laws.

Unless you have a concealed weapons permit ("concealed carry permit"), you can be charged criminally for carrying a concealed weapon that is "readily accessible for immediate use."  The statute does make certain exceptions for people who carry a weapon in their own home or business.  Otherwise, carrying a concealed loaded firearm can charged as a class A misdemeanor.  Carrying a concealed sawed-off shotgun or rifle can be charged as a second degree felony.  Other concealed weapons can be charged at the class B misdemeanor level.

Even if your weapon is not concealed, you can still be charged criminally if you are considered to be a "restricted person."  You can be considered a "restricted person" under Utah law for a number of different reasons, including if you are "an unlawful user of a controlled substance," if you have been convicted of a violent felony, or if you are on probation or parole for any felony.  Possession of a firearm by a restricted person can result in a felony conviction.

If police find a gun and even just a little bit of marijuana in your possession, you could be facing a felony criminal case.  If you have been charged or are under investigation for a criminal charge in Utah, you should consult immediately with an experienced criminal defense attorney.  Based in Salt Lake City, Stephen Howard has successfully handled thousands of serious criminal charges - more than most Utah attorneys will see in an entire career.  

Contact us now to schedule an initial consultation.


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  • Selected Victories
  • Criminal Defense Trial AttorneyNot Guilty - Client was charged with aggravated assault for allegedly pointing handgun at and threatening another driver during a road rage incident. Defense investigation and analysis, combined with effective cross-examination at trial indicated the alleged victim was the initial aggressor and suported client's self-defense claim. Jury acquitted client at trial.
  • Minor Possession Alcohol - MIP AttorneyDismissed - Minor in possession charge (MIP) was dismissed by prosecutor when defense analysis demonstrated that the police had failed to obtain necessary evidence against client. Police had raided a large party involving underage drinking. Several individuals were charged, but police did not obtain evidence showing that client had personally consumed or possessed alcohol. Case was dismissed.
  • Utah 402 Reduction Attorney Felony Reduced - Client with prior felony conviction was granted a 402 reduction to the misdemeanor level over the objection of the prosecutor. Based on information provided to the court in support of the defense motion, the judge ruled in favor of the defense.
  • Felony Attorney Utah Dismissed - Client facing first-degree felony charge and possible life in prison for child kidnapping. Full defense analysis of the case revealed critical legal flaws in the prosecution's case. When confronted with the defense legal analysis, the prosecutor agreed to dismiss the case outright without trial.
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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
560 South 300 East, Suite 200, 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

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