Being charged with a crime in Taylorsville, UT can turn your life upside down. Regardless of whether the charges involve a misdemeanor or a felony, the consequences of being convicted can include steep fines, incarceration, loss of your driver’s license, loss of your gun privileges, mandatory community service, supervised probation, and other penalties. A conviction will also result in you receiving a criminal record, which can create lasting difficulties when it comes to seeking employment, getting approved for student loans, or earning the professional licenses you need to advance your career.
When the consequences of being convicted are so devastating, it’s crucial to make sure that your Constitutional rights are being protected by a tough and experienced criminal defense attorney. With more than 16 years of experience handling a wide range of serious criminal charges in Taylorsville and the surrounding area, including DUI, drug possession and distribution, simple and aggravated assault, weapons crimes, theft, sex crimes, murder, and manslaughter, attorney Darwin Overson is prepared to fight hard for justice on you and your family’s behalf.
It’s important to act quickly after you or someone you love has been arrested. Call Darwin Overson at (801) 758-2287 to set up a free, completely confidential legal consultation. Darwin is available around the clock to make emergency jail and holding center visits.
What Are the Criminal Penalties for a Misdemeanor in Taylorsville?
Like most states, Utah separates crimes into two categories: misdemeanors, which are lesser offenses, and felonies, which are more serious and therefore carry longer sentences and higher fines. While misdemeanors carry lighter penalties than felonies, both will result in the creation of a permanent criminal record, which any potential employer will be able to access by running a background check. Even minor misdemeanors can have long-lasting negative impacts on your personal and professional life.
In Utah, misdemeanors are divided into three groups called “classes.” These classes are:
- Class C Misdemeanor
- Fine — Up to $750
- Sentence — Up to 90 days
- Examples — Driving with a suspended license, public intoxication
- Class B Misdemeanor
- Fine — Up to $1,000
- Sentence — Up to 6 months
- Examples — Possession of marijuana (less than 1 ounce), simple assault, trespassing, reckless driving, DUI
- Class A Misdemeanor
- Fine — Up to $2,500
- Sentence — Up to 1 year
- Examples — DUI resulting in injury, theft, negligent homicide
Fines and Prison Sentences if You’re Convicted of a Felony in UT
Like misdemeanors, felonies are also divided into three groups, which are each assigned numbered “degrees.” The lower the number, the more serious the crime and its possible penalties, with examples below:
- Third Degree Felony
- Fine — Up to $5,000
- Sentence — Up to 5 years
- Examples — Aggravated assault, possession of marijuana with intent to distribute, prescription forgery
- Second Degree Felony
- Fine — Up to $10,000
- Sentence — Up to 15 years
- Examples — Robbery, kidnapping, manslaughter
- First Degree Felony
- Fine — Up to $10,000
- Sentence — Up to life in prison
- Examples — Rape, murder, aggravated burglary, aggravated robbery
Utah also has a fourth class of felony called a “capital” felony, where capital punishment, or the death penalty, is a possible consequence of being convicted. Aggravated murder is the only capital felony in Utah. Prosecutors seldom choose to pursue the death penalty against defendants charged with this offense.
Depending on what sort of crime a defendant is charged with, he or she might face other penalties specific to his or her offense. For example, a defendant who is convicted of a sex crime will have to register as a sex offender, which can create major disturbances to daily life. To give another example, the Ignition Interlock Restricted Driver Law passed in 2006 requires all defendants convicted of DUI to install a breathalyzer called an ignition interlock device in their vehicles. If the device detects alcohol on the driver’s breath, the car’s engine will not start.
Depending on the defendant’s circumstances, it may be possible to obtain a lighter sentence or get approval to participate in a diversion program, such as Drug Court. In Drug Court, which is similar to probation, the defendant agrees to comply with certain rules and restrictions while his or her guilty plea is held in abeyance, or suspended. If the defendant completes the Drug Court program successfully, the plea is withdrawn, and the charges against the defendant are dismissed.
Utah Criminal Defense Lawyers Serving Taylorsville
If you or one of your loved ones was arrested for a misdemeanor or felony in Taylorsville, it’s critical to start building your case as soon as possible. To start exploring the legal options that may be available to you in a free and confidential consultation, call criminal attorney Darwin Overson at (801) 758-2287 right away. Darwin will answer all of your legal questions and help you understand the next steps that need to be taken in your case.