Being arrested and charged with a crime is a shocking experience. As close to your arrest as possible, you need to reach out to your best friend through the justice system—a criminal defense attorney. Though all crimes range in seriousness of penalties, first offenders are at an advantage when the judge and prosecutors weigh in your criminal history.
Your defense lawyer will seek community supervision, probation, fines, substance abuse classes, or other penalties that would avoid jail time and a criminal record.
Criminal Defense Lawyer for First Time Offenders in Salt Lake City
Criminal convictions can have serious repercussions on your career, family, housing, and education. Levitt Legal, PLLC will use every tool to make sure your first arrest doesn’t negatively shape your future.
Call 801-455-1743 or send a message to discuss your legal options in a free, no-obligation consultation. Levitt Legal, PLLC represents first time offenders in Salt Lake City, Provo, Ogden, Deer Valley, Tooele, Layton, Clearfield, and the surrounding area.
First-Time Offense Information Center
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First Time Offender in Utah
Many first-time offenders make critical mistakes, like pleading guilty under the assumption they will get leniency. Retaining a defense lawyer is highly advised, as any criminal record has the potential to create problems for you. Defense lawyers know how to interact with the prosecution and court to reach an agreement on a plea deal.
Depending on your situation, your best option may be going to trial. The justice system is confusing and your case may be lost based on any procedural snag. Consequences that can follow you through your career are worth the investment of a criminal defense attorney.
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First Time Offenders of Misdemeanor Crimes
For misdemeanor cases, the maximum jail time ranges from 90 days to one year. Misdemeanor offenses are classified into class A, B, and C by level of seriousness. Common misdemeanors include:
- Class A: Negligent homicide, DUI with injury, theft, assault on a police officer, criminal mischief, and possession of marijuana (more than one ounce, less than 16 ounces).
- Class B: Assault, resisting arrest, DUI, reckless driving, possession of marijuana under one ounce, possession of drug paraphernalia, shoplifting (under $300), trespass of a dwelling, public nuisance, concealed weapon, and many traffic offenses.
- Class C: Public intoxication, no valid license, and driving on a suspended license.
A first offender in a misdemeanor case will probably not serve additional jail time. The court may allow the defendant to serve a probation term and expunge the charges after a successful completion. The court could also impose community supervision, probation, restitution, fines, substance abuse classes, or counseling.
First offense drug crimes as described in the Utah Controlled Substances Act or Utah Drug Paraphernalia Act will result in the suspension of your driver’s license for six months. Drunk driving or refusing a blood alcohol test will also result in suspension of your driver’s license. Levitt Legal, PLLC will review the possibilities with you and how best to resolve your case.
View our practice areas for more information on your specific charge.
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First Time Felony Offenders in Salt Lake City
Felony convictions may be punished by a prison term and fine. First and second degree felonies require prison time. Felony convictions preclude a person from voting, serving on a jury, obtaining certain professional licenses, owning a firearm, and other restrictions.
Felonies are ordered into a first, second, or third degree based on the significance of the crime. First degree felonies subject you up to a lifetime in prison and are reserved for egregious assaults against a person or the public. Whatever your charges, Levitt Legal, PLLC will vigorously defend you and make use of your first offender status. Examples of felony offenses and their punishments are listed below.
First Degree: Murder, rape, child kidnapping, aggravated burglary, aggravated robbery or arson, and possession with intent to distribute controlled substances near a school. Punishable by five years to life in prison and up to $10,000 in fines.
Second Degree: Manslaughter, robbery, residential burglary, kidnapping, perjury, auto theft, forgery of checks $5,000 or more, theft of property $5,000 or more, forcible sexual abuse, and intentional child abuse. Punishable by one to 15 years in prison and up to $10,000 in fines.
Third Degree: Burglary of non-dwelling, theft more than $1,000 but less than $5,000, aggravated assault, forgery of checks more than $1,000 but under $5,000, third DUI in 10 years, joyriding (for more than 24 hours), possession with intent to distribute marijuana, and possession of other controlled substances, and false or forged prescriptions. Punishable by up to five years in prison and up to $5,000 in fines.
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Hire a Defense Attorney for Misdemeanor and Felony First Offenses
Your best course of action through the legal system is with a skilled defense attorney as your guide and advocate. In our adversarial system, you need someone to represent your perspective or you stand to be railroaded in court. Levitt Legal, PLLC will meet with you and develop a defense strategy to combat charges from misdemeanor to felony violations.
Call 801-455-1743 today to schedule a free, no-obligation meeting. You will leave with a plan and intention toward the next steps of securing your freedom.