Fighting Weapons Offenses In Salt Lake City
Utah has very favorable gun laws, but not everyone is entitled to own and carry a firearm. Utah law prohibits possession of a firearm by certain people. These individuals — called “interdicted” or “prohibited possessors” — include felons and people convicted of domestic violence.
Even in state court, gun charges are serious. Certain situations only make the penalties worse. These “enhancements” include the presence or use of drugs or gang activity.
I represent a wide range of people, including convicted felons, gun dealers and alleged illegal buyers. Many of my clients face gun charges in addition to other charges, including drug charges or criminal charges linked to gang activity.
When I consider the whole situation, I often discover that the crime is only part of the real problem. Life situations, including addictions to drugs and alcohol, can be large factors leading to the alleged commission of robbery, theft and weapons crimes. I develop an effective defense strategy tailored to my clients’ unique situations and goals.
In some circumstances, I am able to have gun charges reduced or dismissed. I also seek to have clients acquitted of the charges they face. My hard work in a felon in possession cases – as well as my past experience as a judge – keeps convicted felons out of prison so that they can continue moving forward and rebuilding their lives after serving their initial sentences.
These Are Often Federal Charges In Salt Lake City
Restricted persons caught with guns face serious trouble — often in Federal Courts. Federal Courts often have power over the case (called jurisdiction) because it is likely that the gun originated in a state other than Utah, making it a federal matter.
In Federal Courts, people face long prison sentences if they are convicted. These sentences are determined according to federal sentencing guidelines, which give judges little discretion to lower the number of years to be served.
When I handle federal cases, I often try to have them removed to State Court where the penalties are more favorable. While I still seek to have charges dismissed or lowered to lesser offenses, my clients gain some assurance that there is less at stake.
Former Judge Pro Tem
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