Salt Lake Criminal Defense Attorney Utah
Criminal Defense Attorney Stephen Howard
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Can criminal charges be re-filed in Utah after they have been dismissed by a judge?

Most often, when a criminal case is dismissed in Utah, it is over.  But there are circumstances in which you may face the possibility of having charges re-filed against you.

Constitutional double jeopardy protections and due process requirements often prevent prosecutors from re-filing charges. If your case has been dismissed after a jury is empaneled but before a verdict is reached, double jeopardy prevents re-filing.  If your case is dismissed after the first witness begins testifying in a jury trial, double jeopardy protects you again.  If your case was dismissed after a prosecutor failed to demonstrate probable cause at a preliminary hearing, due process protections can prohibit re-filing of the charges.

If your case is dismissed because witnesses fail to appear at an evidentiary hearing or at trial, the prosecutor may be allowed to refile the case.  If your case is dismissed as a result of a plea bargain in another case, but you withdraw your plea in the other case, the dismissed case will typically be reinstated.

Statutes of limitations can also act to prohibit re-filing.  If the case is dismissed after the original statute of limitations has run, a prosecutor may be prevented from re-filing.

When facing criminal prosecution, an experienced criminal defense attorney can make all the difference.  Salt Lake criminal defense lawyer Stephen Howard has a track record that speaks for itself.

Contact us now to schedule an initial consultation.


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  • Selected Victories
  • Criminal Defense AttorneyDismissed - Charges of insurance fraud were brought when investigators found reason to believe that client's claim of injury was fraudulent. Client was seen kicking a soccer ball, and investigators concluded that the injury claim was false. By obtaining medical records and other administrative records, and by pointing out to the prosecutor that the alleged injury interferred with the client's ability to lift - not his ability to kick a ball - the prosecutor agreed to dismiss the case.
  • 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 Expungement Lawyer Expunged - Client with prior conviction for violent felony was ineligible for expungement through the courts. A successful 2-step reduction restored expungement eligibility and ultimately led to the court's decision to grant the requested expungement.
  • 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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Our criminal defense lawyers have represented clients facing some of the most serious felony charges on the books in Utah. Whether you are facing prosecution for felony or misdemeanor charges, you can be assured that our attorneys have the experience, knowledge, and determination necessary to help you achieve the results you need. Choosing the best defense attorney for your case will be one of the most important decisions you make....

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Being charged with a crime is not the same as being convicted. But just being charged can affect more than you may have imagined - jail, job, family, bills, rent or mortgage. It can feel like everything has gone wrong, and may you wonder if anything can go right. But facing criminal prosecution does not mean giving up hope....

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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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