Salt Lake Criminal Defense Attorney Utah
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Utah Criminal Defense Lawyer Salt Lake City

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Finding a Felony Defense LawyerChoosing a Misdemeanor Defense LawyerDrug and Alcohol Crimes Defense LawyerWhite Collar Defense Attorney for Utah ChargesAttorney for Expungements Reductions and PardonsDefendant Constitutional Rights Criminal LawyerBail and Bond Alternatives in UtahReasons for Hope Facing Criminal Charges

Can I resolve criminal charges without coming to Utah if I live in another state?

As a general rule, if you are charged with a crime in Utah you are required to appear in person to defend your case in court. However, under some circumstances, if you live out of state you may be be able to resolve your case without having to return and appear personally in court. Salt Lake criminal defense attorney Stephen Howard assists clients facing criminal charges throughout Utah.

If you intend to take your case to trial, as a practical matter you will need to be present to participate and assist in your own defense. But if you want to reach a negotiated resolution, Utah law may allow you to waive your right to be present and enter a negotiated plea by affidavit. Under the Utah criminal code, a plea may be entered by affidavit if the case involves only misdemeanor charges. If you are facing felony charges, Utah Code 77-13-4 requires that any felony plea "be entered by the defendant in open court." But in many felony cases, a plea negotiation may be reached which involves reducing the felony charge to a misdemeanor. In such cases, you may still be able to enter a plea by affidavit.

Finding a Utah Criminal Attorney

As a Utah criminal defense lawyer, Stephen Howard has defended cases ranging from aggravated murder to DUI and virtually everything in between. He has a track record that includes dismissals, not guilty verdicts, and reversals on appeal. He has assisted out-of-state clients avoid returning to Utah by negotiating resolutions that have included plea in abeyance agreements, probation recommendations on misdemeanor charges, and misdemeanor reductions on felony charges.

Based in Salt Lake City, Mr. Howard offers legal services to clients facing criminal charges throughout Utah. 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.
  • 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.
  • Utah Expungement Attorney Expungement - Worked to restore client's expungement eligibility through 402 reduction process, then filed successful expungement petitions in multiple courts obtaining expungement orders and clearing client's official criminal history.
  • Utah Burglary Defense Attorney Not Guilty - Client was charged with second-degree felony residential burglary and facing potential prison time. Investigation by the defense revealed multiple witnesses, missed by police and prosecutors, who supported client's claim of innocence. At trial, the jury returned a "not guilty" verdict on all charges.
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  • Utah Misdemeanor Attorney Salt Lake Can I handle a Utah misdemeanor from out-of-state? - Even if you do not intend to take your case to trial, a misdemeanor criminal offense in Utah can require multiple court appearances to reach a resolution. If you have been charged with a crime in Utah, but are not a Utah resident, an experienced criminal defense attorney may be able to help you resolve the case without returning to the state. . . .
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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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