Salt Lake City Murder Defense Attorney
Serious Defense for a Serious Charge. 15+ Years of Experience!
Arrested for murder? There is far too much at stake to place your trust in a lesser-experienced attorney who is hesitant to go to trial. You need a fearless and skilled attorney like me, Catherine Cleveland. At my law firm, I treat each case individually: Clients are a name, not a case number. As such, I dedicate all my attention resources to fighting for the best outcome for your murder case.
If you are charged with murder or another violent crime in Salt Lake City, do not panic. I have spent more than 20 years successfully representing clients charged with murder and other violent crimes. At Catherine Cleveland Attorney at Law, I combat your charges using high-caliber defense strategies and skilled legal counsel.
Defending Against Murder Charges in Salt Lake City
35 adults and 6 juveniles were arrested for murder in 2018, according to the Utah Department of Public Safety. Some may perceive this as a relatively low statistic compared to other states’ murder rates, but it’s important to recognize that Utah’s prison populations are among the fastest-growing ones in the nation. It’s clear that the state will do everything in its power to fight for your conviction, but I will fight for your innocence harder.
Murder charges make for complex cases. Sometimes, they go beyond intentionally and knowingly causing the demise of another person. Some cases I’ve handled involve:
- Intending to cause bodily injury that tragically results in death
- Acting with indifference that causes fatalities
- Committing a separate felony that results in death
- Resisting arrest or assaulting a police officer that results in death
Utah Penalties for Murder
Murder is a first-degree felony punishable by 20 years to life in prison. Utah law mandates imprisonment for anyone found guilty of murder, meaning it is my responsibility to negotiate your charge to reduce your penalties or dismiss them altogether.
Murder crimes are sentenced according to Utah guidelines, but the judge can use their discretion to determine your punishment, so your penalty may differ from the following:
- First-degree aggravated murder: 300 to 440 months in prison
- First-degree murder: 240 to 288 months in prison
- Attempted aggravated murder: 192 to 240 months in prison
Degrees of Murder
The degree of murder depends on the elements of your alleged crime such as intent and severity.
First-degree murder differs from second-degree murder in that it is willful, deliberate and premeditated. Second-degree murder is not premeditated, but it is willful and deliberate in the moment. For example, someone could be accused of second-degree murder if they grabbed their gun from the car and killed their boss after being fired from their job unexpectedly. However, that person may suffer first-degree murder charges if they planned and prepared this violent crime in advance, such as two weeks before.
Nonetheless, all murder accusations are serious, and penalties may be enhanced with aggravating factors which makes it crucial that you hire a proven Salt Like City murder defense lawyer like myself. At the initial consultation, I will spend time with you to identify the issues surrounding your murder charge and assess the strengths and weaknesses of your case. From there, I can move forward with thorough investigations and reviews of witness statements. I also look at the events leading up to your arrest to see if your rights were violated at any point.
Catherine Cleveland Attorney at Law Is Here for You
My goal is to fight for the best outcome. I am not a murder defense attorney who shies away from the courtroom. I am not quick to plea bargain. If it is in your best interests, I will take your murder case to trial, and fight tirelessly for a favorable outcome. To me, you’re not just another statistic: You’re a human being who was caught in the wrong place at the wrong time. As such, I will treat you with the compassion and respect you deserve.
Former Judge Pro Tem
Highly Respected in the Legal Community
Work Directly With Me From Beginning to End
Aggressive, Hands-On Approach to Each Case