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Theft by Rental Agreement - Utah Criminal Defense Attorney

Criminal charges for theft in Utah can be based on a violation of a rental agreement, even without proof that the defendant intended to permanently deprive the owner. Having an experienced Utah criminal lawyer on your side can be the best step toward ensuring that your rights are protected. Based in Salt Lake City, Stephen Howard has defended thousands of serious felony and misdemeanor cases, including theft, burglary, robbery, and many other related crimes. Contact us today for an initial consultation.

Elements of a Utah Theft by Rental Agreement Charge

Most Utah theft charges require proof that the defended intended to permanently deprive the property owner of possession of the stolen property. Under the Utah criminal code, the crime theft by rental agreement provides an exception to this general rule. A violation of this criminal statute can be supported by evidence that the person renting an item used it in a way or manner that is a "gross deviation" from the intended use, or simply that the person renting the item did not return it at the time required under the rental agreement, and that the delay in returning the item was a "gross deviation" from the terms of  the rental agreement.

Theft by rental agreement charges in Utah typically involve allegations that a person rented a car, tools, or other property, but failed to return the property at the required time. Returning rental property a few hours will not normally result in criminal charges being filed. Most rental companies will initially try to work with customers to secure the return of their property. But if a rental company cannot contact a customer, or if the property is held for an unreasonably long period of time, police may become involved and criminal charges can be the result.

Consequences of a Theft Conviction in Utah

A conviction for theft by rental agreement in Utah can result in substantial jail or prison time, and thousands of dollars in fines. The penalty for a criminal charge of theft by rental agreement is typically based on the value of the item(s) rented, and can range from a class B misdemeanor (maximum of 180 days jail) up to a second degree felony (maximum of 15 years prison).  

Finding a Criminal Defense Attorney in Utah

Under our Constitution, a person charged with a crime is presumed to be innocent and is guaranteed the right to a jury trial where the prosecution will be required to prove their case beyond a reasonable doubt. Some people prefer to reach a negotiated resolution with the prosecutor. Either way, having an experienced Utah criminal defense attorney on your side can be critical to defending your case and protecting your rights.

Stephen Howard has handled literally thousands of serious felony charges during his career. His track record includes not guilty verdicts or dismissals on charges including some of the most serious criminal charges on the books in Utah, including aggravated robbery, burglary, forgery, theft, and more. Based in Salt Lake City, criminal defense lawyer Stephen Howard offers legal services to clients throughout Utah. If you are facing criminal prosecution for theft pursuant to a rental agreement or other serious criminal charges, contact Stephen Howard now to schedule an initial consultation.
 

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  • Selected Victories
  • Criminal Defense AttorneyDismissed - Contractor was charged with theft by deception for allegedly misusing customer funds and failing to complete work that had been agreed upon. A successful motion to quash on legal grounds following the bindover order at preliminary hearing resulted in a complete dismissal of all charges.
  • 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 402 Reduction Attorney Felony Reduced - Client with prior felony conviction was granted a 402 reduction to the misdemeanor level over the objection of the prosecutor. Based on information provided to the court in support of the defense motion, the judge ruled in favor of the defense.
  • Violent Crimes Assalt Defense UtahDismissed at Preliminary Hearing - Client charged with aggravated robbery and facing life in prison. Full case analysis and consultation with client allowed the development of a strong defense strategy. Effective cross-examination of the alleged victim at the preliminary hearing resulted in an outright dismissal of all charges by the judge.
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Criminal Defense Attorney in Utah - Reasons to 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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