Salt Lake Criminal Defense Attorney Utah
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Salt Lake Drunk Driving / DUI / DWI Defense Lawyer

Utah DUI Drunk Driving Attorney Salt Lake area judges and prosecutor's take DUI charges seriously.  If you are arrested for driving or being in actual physical control of a vehicle while intoxicated, you may be facing jail time, substantial fines, and other serious consequences.  As an experienced Salt Lake criminal defense lawyer, Stephen Howard can help.

"Drunk Driving" in Salt Lake - More Than Just Alcohol

Utah statutes relating to driving under the influence apply to more than just alcohol.  The typical DUI charge in Salt Lake involves allegations that a person's blood or breath alcohol level is above 0.08, or that the person's consumption of alcohol has caused a degree of intoxication that made the person unable to safely operate the vehicle.  But Utah DUI statutes also prohibit driving or actual physical control of a vehicle if a person is under the influence of any drug (including lawfully prescribed medications) to a degree that the person is not able to safely operate the vehicle.  Utah statutes also prohibit driving with any measurable amount of any controlled substance or any controlled substance metabolite.  This includes both illegal drugs (e.g. cocaine, methamphetamine, heroin, or marijuana/thc) as well as prescription drugs.  However, it is an affirmative defense to a metabolite charge that the driver had a lawful prescription for the controlled substance.

Consequences of a DUI Conviction in Salt Lake

First-time DUI charges in Salt Lake are typically filed at the class B misdemeanor level.  But even a misdemeanor DUI can result in jail time.  Enhancements can be imposed to increase the level of the offense if the case involves an accident resulting in injuries or if a minor child is in the vehicle at the time of the offense.  Second and third DUI offenses carry enhanced minimum mandatory sentences.  And a third charge within a 10-year period can be filed as a felony charge carrying the possibility of up to five years in prison.

Beyond the criminal court process, Utah laws regarding DUI also provide that the Driver License Division can impose a driver license suspension of 120 days for a first offense, or a suspension of two years for a second or subsequent DUI offense.  This suspension can be imposed before or without a court conviciton, and even before any court appearances are scheduled.  Utah law requires that a driver cited for DUI request a hearing with the Driver License Division within 10 days of being cited.  If no hearing is requested, the Driver License Division typically will take action and suspend a driver's license without waiting to see the outcome of any related court cases.

If you have been charged with DUI or a related offense in the Salt Lake area, contact us today to schedule an initial consultation with Salt Lake criminal attorney Stephen Howard.


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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 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.
  • Utah Burglary Attorney Dismissal - Client was charged with first-degree felony home burglary and facing potential life in prison. Defense analysis revealed flaws in prosecutor's case which led to abeyance agreement intended to lead to a full dismissal of the case.
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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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