Salt Lake Criminal Defense Attorney Utah
Criminal Defense Attorney Stephen Howard
Call Criminal Defense Attorney in Utah
Call Utah Criminal Lawyer
Experienced Criminal Defense Attorneys / Former Prosecutors
Call 801-449-1409. We fight to protect your rights.
Utah Criminal Defense Lawyer Salt Lake City

Criminal Defense Solutions Start HereSM

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

Marijuana Charges in Salt Lake

Drug crimes in Utah can carry strict penalties. Although other states have passed laws decriminalizing marijuana, Utah law continues to provide for criminal prosecution of individuals found to be in possession of marijuana, distributing marijuana, or growing marijuana. Charges for relating to marijuana in Salt Lake can range from a class B misdemeanor (punishable by up to six months in jail) up to more serious felony charges that carries the potential for extended prison sentences. The level of a marijuana-related charge in Utah can depend on the amount of marijuana involved, whether there are allegations of distribution or production, and whether the charge occurred in a drug-free zone.

If you find yourself facing criminal prosecution for marijuana charges in Salt Lake City or elsewhere in Utah, it is vital that you have the assistance of a skilled and experienced criminal defense attorney. Prosecutors receive extensive training in the law and how to obtain convictions. You need someone on your side to ensure that your rights are protected. Attorney Stephen Howard has a record of winning real results for his clients. Contact us now to see how we can help you.

Defending Marijuana Charges in Salt Lake

Ogden Marijuana Charges LawyerSuccessfully defending against a prosecution in a marijuana case requires an understanding of complicated constitutional law issues, including in Fourth Amendment search and seizure law and the  protections offered under the Fifth Amendment. Legal issues relating to "constructive" possession and "innocent" possession can be critical to mounting a successful defense. And whether you intend to take your case to trial or hope to work out a negotiated resolution, it is critical to have an attorney who understands the complex procedural and evidentiary rules involved in Utah's criminal court system.

Defending against marijuana prosecution  in Salt Lake can require a detailed legal and factual analysis, motions to suppress evidence, and the complexities that may be involved in a jury trial. Thorough preparation for trial is important. But many cases will benefit from a negotiated resolution process. You and your attorney should engage in a frank discussion of the strengths and weaknesses or both the defense case and the prosecution case. A successful defense often depends on a criminal defense lawyer with the experience and skills to understand what strategy is most likely to help you to achieve your individual goals in the case.

Criminal defense attorney Stephen Howard has successfully defended drug cases in Utah ranging from first-degree felony distribution to misdemeanor marijuana and paraphernalia charges. He has the experience and skills you need to help achieve the best results for your case.

Marijuana Convictions and Consequences in Salt Lake

Despite changing cultural attitudes toward marijuana, from a legal stand point, you still need to take seriously any criminal charges relating to marijuana possession.

Depending on the circumstances, a criminal charges for marijuana possession can be filed as either a misdemeanor or felony. At its lowest level, a marijuana possession charge will be filed as a class B misdemeanor that carries the potential of up to 180 days in jail and nearly $2,000 in fines and surcharges. Distribution of or possession of marijuana with the intent to distribute can be filed at the felony level and carries a possible prison sentence larger fines. Enhancements for possession or distribution in a drug free zone can significantly increase the penalties for any marijuana charge.

In addition to the consequences and penalties imposed directly by a Salt Lake court for a marijuana charge, drug convictions in Utah carry other "collateral" consequences that can include a suspended driver license, difficulty in obtaining employment, and other limited opportunities.

Most marijuana possession charges in Salt Lake County are handled through one of the municipal justice courts. But even at the misdemeanor level, a marijuana possession charge should not be taken lightly. It can still result in a criminal conviction that can stay on your record and affect your life in significant ways. At the felony level or class A misdemeanor level, marijuana charges in Salt Lake must be filed in the Third District Court in either Salt Lake City or West Jordan.

Legalization of Marijuana - Effects on Salt Lake Marijuana Cases

Some other states have made the possession of marijuana legal, both for recreational and for medical purposes. But Utah's criminal laws against the possession, use, or distribution of marijuana are still enforced by Salt Lake prosecutors and courts.

It is common for residents of states such as Arizona, Colorado, and California to be pulled over for traffic violations while traveling through Salt Lake on I-15 or I-80. Even if a person is using marijuana based on advice from a doctor, possession or use of marijuana in Utah can still result in serious criminal charges. If police find reason to believe that a driver is impaired or even just has THC metabolite in his or her body, a charge for driving with a measurable controlled substance metabolite (sometimes called a "metabolite DUI") can be filed.

Finding a Criminal Lawyer for Salt Lake Marijuana Charges 

If you are facing criminal prosecution for a marijuana charge in Salt Lake City or elsewhere in Utah, you need a skilled and experienced criminal defense lawyer working on your side. Utah criminal defense attorney Stephen Howard has a record of successfully handling drug cases ranging from first degree felony distribution to misdemeanor marijuana possession. To see how Stephen Howard can help you with your case, contact us today.


Best Rating
Make a Payment to Your Account
Get Help Now
Name: Email: Phone: Describe your legal needs here:
I accept the disclaimer below.
Disclaimer: No attorney-client relationship is established by the use of this form. Confidential or time-sensitive information should not be submitted through this form. By clicking 'submit' I am only requesting that I be contacted for the purpose of obtaining legal services.

This form protected by reCAPTCHA.

  • 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 was facing multiple cases involving first-degree felony drug distribution charges for allegedly selling to a confidential informant. Defense analysis of the case revealed fatal flaws in the prosecution case that ultimately resulted in a complete dismissal of all cases and charges.
  • 402 Reduction Lawyer Utah 2-Step Reduction - Client needed a two-step reduction to bring a prior conviction to the misdemeanor level. Collection of substantial evidence of reform and rehabilitation convinced a normally reluctant prosecutor to stipulate to the defense 402 reduction motion.
  • 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.
  • Recent Posts
  • What Constitutes Drug Parpahernalia in Utah How is drug paraphernalia defined in Utah? - The definition of drug paraphernalia under the Utah criminal code looks at both the nature of the object and also the intended use of the object in question. . . .
  • 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. . . .
Best Criminal Defense Strategy

You want the best defense. Agressive is good. But results ultimately are what really matter. Creating an effective strategy for defending against criminal prosecution requires a thorough understanding of statutes, case law, and evidentiary and procedural rules. A successful outcome is more likely when....

Strategy »
Salt Lake Criminal Defense Attorney Profile Utah

Finding the right criminal defense lawyer for you Utah criminal case will be one of the most important decision you make. Before hiring any lawyer, there are a number of important factors to consider. The person you select as your criminal defense attorney will be responsible to defend your case and protect your rights....

Experience »
Conviction Consequences - Utah Criminal Defense

Even a "minor" misdemeanor carries the potential for jail time and significant fines. The direct penalties and collateral consequences of a felony conviction are even more severe. Understanding these consequences is critical as you make decisions relating to your case. Even in a misdemeanor case, you should not....

Consequences »
Utah Criminal Defense Attorney - Reasons to Hope

Never give up hope. Being charged with a crime is not the same as being convicted. And it is usually not the end of the world. While the consequences of a criminal charge can be serious, there are often several options and strategies for handling your case. Understanding your options and how an experienced criminal lawyer can help....

Reasons to Hope »
Home | Attorney Profile | Case Results | Criminal Code | FAQ | Legal Resources | Defense Strategy | Contact Us

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

The materials in this website are intended for informational purposes only, and are not legal advice. Viewing or responding to materials in this site does not create an attorney-client relationship. Read Full Disclaimer.