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Utah Becomes First State To Lower BAC Limit To 0.05

Utah was the first state to lower the legal limit for blood or breath alcohol concentration (BAC) when driving from 0.10 to 0.08 in 1983, so perhaps it is not terribly surprising that the Beehive State appears poised to become the first state to once again further lower the limits. On March 23, Governor Gary Herbert signed House Bill (HB) 155, effectively reducing the BAC limits for driving under the influence (DUI) and other criminal offenses from 0.08 to 0.05. The move comes nearly four years after the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) recommended that the states reduce the allowable BAC to 0.05.… Read More →

Identity Fraud Still Concern For IRS

Tax Day 2017, the IRS filing deadline for 2016 tax returns, falls on April 18 this year. The Desert News reported on April 3 that because many people pay other parties to prepare returns for them, officials with the IRS are cautioning taxpayers to “be wary of shady characters masquerading as professional preparers.” Every year, the IRS releases a “Dirty Dozen” list of tax scams that includes a variety of common scams taxpayers may encounter any time during the year. According to the IRS, tax-related identity theft “remains a top item on the Dirty Dozen list because it remains an… Read More →

Veteran’s Court Program: An Alternative To Incarceration for U.S. Veterans

According to the United States Department of Justice’s special report on veterans in prison and jail, which was released in December 2015, 181,500 veterans were incarcerated in U.S. jails and prisons. From 2011-2012 armed forces veterans made up 8 percent of the jail and prison population. The figures regarding incarcerated veterans are especially troubling considering approximately half of veterans in jail or prison have been diagnosed with a mental disorder by a medical professional. Commonly, veteran suffer from serious mental health issues after military service, including post-traumatic stress disorder, depression, and traumatic brain injuries (TBI), which contribute to criminal and… Read More →

Five Things Tourists Should Know If Arrested In Utah

Late last month, a 19-year-old man was arrested in Florida for his alleged role in the March killing of a convenience store clerk in Murray. Roughly one week later, two men were arrested in Colorado for the alleged kidnapping, forgery, and exploitation of a vulnerable adult in South Salt Lake. All three of these alleged offenders were awaiting extradition to Utah after being taken into custody. While the nature of these crimes garnered media attention, people should understand that alleged out of state offenders facing many other types of more common criminal charges in Utah are also extradited to the Beehive State… Read More →

What To Know About Utah Protective Order Hearings

Domestic violence has received increased national awareness in recent months. More people have spoken out about the seriousness of this issue, often helping victims understand their options. In the state of Utah, domestic violence often involves current or former spouses, people in dating relationships, or members of the same household. Many of these cases can result in the issuance of protective orders. In Utah, there are two types of protective orders that a court may issue under the Cohabitant Abuse Act: Criminal protective orders are issued when there are criminal domestic violence charges against an alleged offender. A court may issue a protective… Read More →

Robbery And Aggravated Robbery: Part 1 – Force Or Fear

If you have been charged with Robbery or Aggravated Robbery in Utah, then you should speak with an experienced and determined Utah criminal defense attorney, who frequently represents clients accused of violent crimes. Having a skilled, focused, and detail-oriented criminal defense attorney on your side can mean the difference between emerging from your criminal legal problems unscathed and going to jail or prison. Utah Code section 76-6-301(1)(a) defines robbery as the taking of “personal property in the possession of another from his person, or immediate presence, against his will, by means of force or fear, and with a purpose or intent to deprive the person permanently or… Read More →

Utah Legislature Ponders Change To DUI Roadblock Law

Last month the Utah House of Representatives voted 8-5 in favor of recommending HB 140. HB 140, also called the “Vehicle Checkpoints Amendments” Act, repeals authorization for traffic checkpoints regarding impaired driving and vehicle operation. More specifically, the bill repeals authorization for administrative traffic checkpoints regarding drivers that may be under the influence of alcohol or drugs, and regarding license plates, registration certificates, insurance certificates, or drivers’ licenses. To be sure, however, the bill does not do away with checkpoints all together. Instead, the new law requires that the administrative traffic checkpoint may be established and operated upon written authority of… Read More →

Violent Crime Rates Drastically Cut In Utah

With the slow economy, states across the nation have slashed funding to important services, including law enforcement and public safety, leaving residents nervous about their health and safety. Surprisingly, the rates of violent crimes have dropped in the country, with an average national decrease of six percent nationwide according to an FBI report. This FBI report includes murder, non-negligent manslaughter, forcible rape, robbery, and aggravated assault in the definition of “violent crime.” This FBI study has also found that Utah experienced a drop of two percent in violent crimes during 2010, compared to the previous year. Most astonishing is the… Read More →