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Salt Lake City, Utah Criminal Defense Lawyers

Experienced. Criminal. Defense.

ucl clmn bg img a1 - Salt Lake City Utah Criminal Defense Lawyers: Overson & Sheen

After you’ve been charged with a crime in Utah, or after a family member has been arrested and taken into custody, your very first step should be contacting a skilled criminal defense attorney who has experience handling cases like yours. When your personal freedom is on the line, strategic and aggressive legal representation can make the difference between spending months or years in jail or prison, and resuming your everyday life with friends and family.

Utah defense lawyer Darwin Overson, founder of the law offices of Overson & Sheen, has over 16 years of experience representing adult and juvenile defendants who have been arrested for violent and non-violent felonies and misdemeanors, including first offenses, repeat offenses, and aggravated crimes. Types of cases Overson & Sheen handles include arson, assault, burglary, domestic violence crimes, drug crimes, DUI (driving under the influence), kidnapping, manslaughter, murder, parole violations, probation violations, robbery, sex crimes, terroristic threats, theft, traffic violations, vandalism, and many other charges. In addition to protecting your rights while fighting to have your case dismissed or your charges reduced, Darwin Overson can also assist with legal matters related to criminal charges, including matters related to bail, detention and custody, and illegal search and seizure.

If you have been charged with a criminal offense in Utah, or if you even suspect that you may be under investigation for a crime, it is urgent that you contact Overson & Sheen immediately for a free legal consultation. Though our offices are located in Salt Lake City, our criminal defense attorneys represent defendants in criminal cases throughout Federal and local courts in the state of Utah.

We Have Successfully Defended Criminal Cases in:


Assault, which is sometimes called “simple” assault, is a misdemeanor crime that is charged when a defendant allegedly injures or attempts to injure another person. Aggravated assault, a felony crime, is a more serious version of simple assault which is charged when the defendant uses a weapon in the course of an assault, or uses a level of force that is likely to cause death or serious injury. While aggravated assault is the more serious offense, both can lead to incarceration, fines, probation, and other consequences. If you or one of your family members was arrested for assault in Salt Lake City or elsewhere in Utah, make sure you are represented by an experienced Utah assault defense lawyer.

Drug Crimes

Overson & Sheen represents juveniles and adult defendants charged with a wide array of misdemeanor and felony drug crimes in Salt Lake City and throughout Utah, including prescription drug offenses. Types of drug offenses we handle at Overson & Sheen include drug possession (called “simple” possession or possession of controlled substances), possession with intent to distribute, drug sales, drug manufacturing and production, smuggling or trafficking drugs, and possession of drug paraphernalia. We take cases involving Schedule I, Schedule II, Schedule III, Schedule IV, and Schedule V substances, including Adderall, cocaine, crack cocaine, heroin, LSD (“acid”), MDMA (“ecstasy”), marijuana (“weed,” “pot”), methamphetamine, OxyContin, Percocet, Valium, Vicodin, Xanax, and other narcotics.


DUI (driving under the influence) is known in some states as DWI (driving while intoxicated).  Regardless of terminology, driving while intoxicated by drugs and/or alcohol can result in devastating criminal penalties, particularly for commercial drivers, even if it is the defendant’s first DUI offense. If you have been charged with drugged driving or drunk driving in Utah, or if a family member was arrested for intoxicated driving, it is crucial that you review your legal options immediately with a Salt Lake City DUI lawyer. There are numerous defenses to DUI charges, and it may be possible to have your case dismissed.


Homicide is a broad legal term that includes more than half a dozen distinct criminal charges under the Utah Code. Types of homicide cases our Utah criminal defense law firm handles include aggravated murder, child abuse homicide, homicide by assault, murder, manslaughter, negligent homicide, and vehicular homicide, which is also referred to as “automobile homicide.” Most of these offenses are felonies, and several carry enhanced penalties. If you or a loved one has been arrested for and charged with manslaughter, vehicular homicide, or other homicide offenses in Salt Lake City or elsewhere in Utah, aggressive representation is absolutely critical.


Many people use the terms “robbery” and “theft” as though they are interchangeable. However, from a defendant’s standpoint, there is a vast difference between these two offenses. Robbery specifically involves using force or intimidation to physically take a person’s property, while theft (“larceny”) is a broader term that includes shoplifting, vehicular theft, and many other crimes. In addition to representing defendants charged with aggravated robbery, robbery, and various theft offenses, Utah theft lawyer Darwin Overson also handles cases involving burglary, possession of burglar’s tools, possession of stolen property, trespassing, vandalism, and related property crimes.

Sex Crimes

In addition to being heavily fined, incarcerated in jail or prison, and/or placed on probation, a defendant who is convicted of sex crime will in most cases be further required to formally register as a sex offender. Skilled legal representation by an aggressive and experienced sex crimes defense attorney in Salt Lake City can make the difference between keeping your privacy, and being publicly branded as a sex offender for the rest of your life. Types of sex crime charges our Utah defense law firm handles include aggravated sexual assault, forcible sodomy, possession and distribution of child pornography, rape, sexual abuse, and various charges related to statutory rape, such as unlawful sexual conduct with a 16- or 17-year-old.


Despite enforcing some of the nation’s more lenient gun laws, Utah also permits harsh penalties to be imposed on defendants who are convicted of gun crimes. Types of gun charges and weapons charges we handle at Overson & Sheen include carrying a concealed firearm, carrying a loaded gun in public, gun possession on school grounds, possession of a deadly weapon, and selling weapons to minors. We also represent “restricted persons,” or individuals who have been criminally charged with weapons crimes after being prohibited from purchasing, owning, or using firearms due to prior convictions or other conditions.

Violent Crimes

Violent crimes are frequently classified as felonies and therefore have the potential to result in some of Utah’s harshest criminal penalties. Violent crimes also carry an intensely negative stigma that can make it exceptionally difficult to get hired for a job with a conviction in your criminal history. If you or someone you love was accused of committing a violent crime in Salt Lake City or other parts of Utah, it is critical that you speak with an experienced defense lawyer immediately. Types of violent crime charges our Utah law firm handles include aggravated assault, domestic violence crimes, murder, rape, robbery, and other offenses.

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Darwin Overson

Since establishing his own private practice in 1998, Darwin has represented thousands of defendants in a wide array of complex criminal cases, building a reputation as a formidable courtroom opponent. In addition to representing thousands of defendants as a trial attorney in district courts and justice courts throughout Utah, Darwin has argued more than 2,000 motions in court, and is frequently able to obtain favorable outcomes for clients, such as acquittals, sentence reductions, and case dismissals.


Jay Sheen

After earning a Juris Doctor Degree from the University of Utah in 1982, Jay Sheen began his legal career as a civil attorney primarily practicing personal injury law. As a partner at Overson & Sheen, Jay Sheen brings over 33 years of experience as a personal injury lawyer to every claim and lawsuit he handles. Whether he is negotiating a settlement agreement on behalf of a Salt Lake City car accident victim, or representing a plaintiff in complex medical malpractice or wrongful death litigation, Jay Sheen is a fierce legal advocate who focuses on maximizing compensation for negligence victims and their loved ones.

Our Utah Attorneys Fight For Justice