When you are facing a criminal charge, it is one of the most difficult times of your life. A criminal conviction goes on your permanent record, and can keep you from getting into a school you want, scoring a job you want, living in a housing complex you want, and even traveling to some countries. Being arrested for a crime does not mean you’ll be convicted, though. By getting an experienced criminal defense attorney involved in the process from the moment of arrest, you stand your best chance of building a solid defense and keeping a criminal charge from turning into a criminal conviction.
Criminal Penalties in Utah
Criminal penalties in the state of Utah vary widely. Class C misdemeanors, which are the lowest charges you can face that can still result in a jail term, are punishable by up to 90 days in jail and a $750 fine, for instance. A first degree felony, on the other hand, carries a sentence of five years to life in prison with fines up to $10,000. While the legal consequences may be much higher for one than the other, though, even a misdemeanor charge that results in probation, instead of jail time, goes on your record and can alter your life.
Defending Against Criminal Charges in Utah
Numerous factors go into a criminal case. If you are innocent of a crime, of course, it is always in your best interest to fight the charges against you. Even if you did commit a crime, though, such as drug possession, or public intoxication, if you have been cooperative with police or have extenuating circumstances, it may be possible to keep a criminal conviction off your record. A criminal defense attorney can often prevent minor criminal cases from even going to court by interfacing with the prosecution and coming up with the best deal for you.
Salt Lake City Criminal Defense Attorney
When you face criminal charges, you need an attorney with the right experience defending clients in the criminal court system. Loni F. De Land is a criminal defense attorney who represents those who are facing criminal charges throughout the state of Utah. When you have been arrested, the most important thing to remember is that an arrest is not a conviction. By working with the right attorney, and building the best possible case, you can avoid penalties, like jail time and fines, and keep your record clean.