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Drug Use or Possession - Utah Criminal Attorney

A Utah drug possession charge can be filed as a felony or misdemeanor, depending on which drug is allegedly possessed, the location of the alleged offense, the defendant's prior criminal record, and other factors. Having an experienced criminal attorney on your side is vital to a successful defense.

Utah criminal defense lawyer Stephen Howard has successfully represented thousands of clients during his career. Contact us now to arrange for an initial confidential consultation.

How are the terms "possession" or "use" defined in a Utah drug case?

Utah Prescription Fraud Defense AttorneyThe terms "possession" and "use" are defined identically under the Utah criminal code. The statutory definition is broad, and reads as follows:

"'Possession' or 'use' means the joint or individual ownership, control, occupancy, holding, retaining, belonging, maintaining, or the application, inhalation, swallowing, injection, or consumption, as distinguished from distribution, of controlled substances and includes individual, joint, or group possession or use of controlled substances. For a person to be a possessor or user of a controlled substance, it is not required that the person be shown to have individually possessed, used, or controlled the substance, but it is sufficient if it is shown that the person jointly participated with one or more persons in the use, possession, or control of any substances with knowledge that the activity was occurring, or the controlled substance is found in a place or under circumstances indicating that the person had the ability and the intent to exercise dominion and control over it." - Utah Code 58-37-2.

The concept of possession as defined in this statute is broad enough to include the concepts of "constructive" possession and possession under accomplice liability. By including the concept of "consumption" in its definition, this statute also extends possession or use to include "internal" possession of a controlled substance. (This statute specifically defines "consumption" to include "having any measurable amount of a controlled substance in a person's body" but excludes metabolites of controlled substances.

Finding a Criminal Attorney for Utah Drug Cases

Utah Criminal Defense LawyerIf you are facing prosecution for drug charges in Utah, it is vital to have an experienced criminal attorney on your side. Mr. Howard has successfully defended clients facing drug charges ranging from first-degree felony distribution to misdemeanor marijuana possession. He has the experience, knowledge, and determination to help ensure that your rights are protected.

Contact us today to arrange for a confidential initial consultation.

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  • Criminal Appeals Defense AttorneyDismissed on Appeal - DUI case was dismissed after a successful appeal where the Utah Court of Appeals reversed the trial court's denial of the defense motion to suppress. Without the suppressed evidence, the prosecutor acknowledged that they did not have sufficient evidence to proceed to trial and the case was dismissed.
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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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