A Tough Defense for the Toughest Offenses®

 

Top Criminal Defense Lawyer in Utah

Protecting Your Freedoms

Contact our strategic defense attorneys to help you understand your legal rights and options. From theft crimes and drug charges to DUI and sex crimes, our Award-Winning Criminal Defense Attorneys in Salt Lake City, have a proven track record. With over 650 trials to our credit, our defense team is prepared to go all the way.

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Track Record of Winning

We have a reputation for achieving excellent results. Fewer than 1% of our clients have ever been incarcerated.

Award Winning Utah Law Firm

We are proud recipients of the America Jurisprudence Award for Excellence Achievement in the Study of Advocacy”.

We Protect Your Rights

Your constitutional rights are inalienable and we pride ourselves in protecting and defending them every step of the way.

No-Obligation Case Review

Take advantage of consulting on your case with an experienced attorney who listens and reviews your situation for free. There’s nothing to lose, contact us now.

Military Discounts

We are proud to support our troops with an exclusive discount for veterans for all our professional legal services.

100+ Years of Experience

Criminal cases can be unfair and the consequences hefty. We have successfully represented thousands of clients in Utah.

Criminal Defense Attorney Salt Lake City Client Testimonials

Our #1 goal is to provide you with successful results, period.
Ashlie thank you so much! I live out of state, and you guys made it very easy. Money well spent!
Jared Oaks
Jared Oaks
16:48 21 Jun 24
Attorney Scott Wilding was always available to answer my questions and concerns. He put me at ease through out the legal process.I am very grateful to this lawyer for his expertise and exceptional commitment.
diana guajardo
diana guajardo
16:10 20 Jun 24
darrell was great at communicating and helping me feel confident in my case. i felt reassured throughout this daunting court case. thanks to wasatch defense lawyers i was able to have my dui dropped.
Logan Duffy
Logan Duffy
18:26 01 Jun 24
Spoke with Layne in regards to some charges for my son. He was thorough, honest and so helpful! We are beyond thankful for the level of service we received! Definitely a company with high integrity. Thank you!
Katy Cromer
Katy Cromer
22:15 31 May 24
Wasatch Defense has some of the most supportive people I have met. Lane and Darrell York answered every question I had in a clear way. I walked away from our meeting feeling so much relief and support. If you need guidance or defense these are the people to reach out to.
Lacie Eklund
Lacie Eklund
16:12 31 May 24
Incredibly helpful and kind, and gets the job done. The whole team is awesome!
Makenzee & Jordan
Makenzee & Jordan
00:38 21 May 24
They are the real deal! They treat you professionally, respectfully, and with utmost confidence. They handled my situation quickly and I never doubted them whatsoever. I now have peace of mind that I can call upon Wasatch Defense Lawyers any time and know that my issue will be taken care of right on the spot.I urge you to contact them, they will put your mind at ease no matter what is going on, and that is half of any battle right there!
Mr. Beef
Mr. Beef
18:22 08 May 24
I've been working with the team at Wasatch Defense for nearly 4 years now. They have been transparent and easy to work with. I have had access to my representation the entire time and they have been a huge asset to me. I genuinely appreciate everything they have done for my family.
Ken Rivas
Ken Rivas
16:27 08 May 24
I highly recommend them to anyone looking for a law firm that is compassionate and listens and cares.
J M
J M
15:03 07 May 24
Scott is an amazing human being to work with! If something might not be going your way and you need their services, this is the place to call! I was definitely sketchy at first with the consultation and the quote, but you get what you pay for! Trust these guys and be patient, and it could definitely work out in your favor. Great staff and friendly service. Thanks Scott
Zack Craghead
Zack Craghead
02:03 07 May 24
Caring and professional. Answered the myriad of questions with tact and grace. I would highly recommend Wasatch Defence Lawyers
jack blair
jack blair
21:58 25 Apr 24
Attorney Darrell and Paralegal Victoria Handley helped me out so much! They were super helpful and super professional. Highly recommend them
Gio Castillo
Gio Castillo
17:05 16 Apr 24
From the initial consultation through to the final resolution of my case, the team at Wasatch Defense Lawyers provided exceptional legal services that were both comprehensive and compassionate. Their expertise was evident in every interaction.What truly set Wasatch Defense Lawyers apart was their ability to provide reassurance during what was an incredibly stressful time. Their confidence and clarity in explaining complex legal details helped ease my anxiety, and their consistent availability to answer my questions made me feel supported and valued as a client.Though thankfully my case was not pursued, their strategic approach was tailored specifically to my needs, reflecting a deep understanding of the law and a commitment to achieving the best possible outcome.Choosing Wasatch Defense Lawyers was the best decision I made, and I am profoundly grateful for their guidance and support. I wholeheartedly recommend them to anyone in need of trustworthy and effective legal representation. They truly believe in justice and work tirelessly to ensure it for their clients.
James Pizzola
James Pizzola
15:57 14 Apr 24
The team of people here are amazing! Although they weren't the type of attorneys I needed, their opinions, references, and conversations with me made me feel completely supported and confident in the next steps.
Diana
Diana
21:28 04 Apr 24
These Guys are Amazing!! I highly recommend Layne Clark and his Team, These guys are real professionals.
Messick Justin
Messick Justin
01:03 02 Apr 24
The team at Wasatch Defense is incredible! Could not have gotten through our ordeal without them. Cannot express how grateful we are for their expertise and advice. 5/5 recommend!
Brittany Garcia
Brittany Garcia
22:47 31 Mar 24
Title: Exceptional Legal Defense Firm!Review:⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️I can't express enough gratitude for the outstanding service provided by Wasatch Defense Laywers.Our situation was complex, and we were feeling overwhelmed and uncertain about the legal process. However, the team at Wastach Defense Lawyers immediately put my wife and me at ease. They took the time to listen to our concerns, thoroughly explained our options, and developed a strategic defense plan tailored to our needs.Throughout every step of the legal proceedings, they demonstrated expertise, attention to detail, and a genuine dedication to securing the best possible outcome. Their communication was prompt and transparent, ensuring we were informed and prepared at all times.Not only did they achieve a favorable resolution, but they also provided invaluable support and guidance during what was undoubtedly the most challenging time for our family.If you find yourself in need of legal representation, I wholeheartedly recommend Wasatch Defense Lawyers. Their professionalism, integrity, and commitment to their clients are unparalleled. Thank you to the entire team for your exceptional service!
Mario Garcia
Mario Garcia
22:07 31 Mar 24
For the rest of my life, I will always carry two items in my wallet: My driver’s license and Lane’s business card. This firm is professional, effective, and should be your first call for any legal help you need. This is a sincere and genuine review, and Wasatch and the entire team will always be my partner in business and life for all things legal.
L L
L L
23:01 27 Mar 24
The team at Wasatch Defense Lawyers truly goes above and beyond to ensure that their clients receive the best possible representation. They took the time to listen to my concerns, thoroughly explain the legal process, and develop a strategy tailored to my specific situation.Throughout the entire process, they were responsive, proactive, and incredibly knowledgeable. They kept me informed every step of the way.Thanks to their hard work and dedication, I was able to achieve a favorable outcome in my case. I am incredibly grateful to Wasatch Defense Lawyers for their exceptional service and would not hesitate to recommend them to anyone in need of legal representation. If you’re looking for a team of skilled and compassionate attorneys who will truly advocate for you, look no further than Wasatch Defense Lawyers.Thank you Lane and Craig
Hernandez
Hernandez
20:00 19 Mar 24
Lane and Scott are amazing. I couldn't imagine how we would've gotten through the most stressful time in our lives without this firm. Lane is an amazing human and he truly does want to educate others and guide them, while always remaining very upfront. Always willing to talk, just listen, provide advice and a laugh when you really need it. I would never ever want to sit on the other side across from these gentlemen. Thank you again.
Mrs. C
Mrs. C
23:29 16 Mar 24
Scott, Ashley, and Lane were a tremendous help in a very stressful situation. I highly recommend the Wasatch Defence team.
Empire Holdings
Empire Holdings
02:11 14 Mar 24
Hi I just want to say how wonderful Scott and Lane are.Not just Lawyers but they care not only for their clients but they are very concerned and caring about their clients families!!! Looking for a Lawyer They are the ones Could ask for a better team Thank you so very much. 🥰🥰
Cheryl Ingles
Cheryl Ingles
02:41 06 Mar 24
Darrell is amazing. As was the whole team from day 1. Extremely professional and incredible work ethic. I felt as ease the entire process. Highly recommend.
Amy
Amy
17:43 20 Feb 24
The Wasatch Defense Lawyers are the best team out there and I recommend them 100% to anyone!! They helped me through a very stressful situation and were able to get my case completely dismissed and my record cleared! I’m sure that if I had not gone to them, things would have resulted very differently. They are worth every penny! The moment I signed with them, a weight lifted off my shoulders because I knew I was in good hands and that they would take care of everything, and they did! I felt that they truly cared about me as an individual. Lane was awesome and kept me informed every step of the way. He always answered my messages promptly and reassured me that everything was going to be ok. Scott was also great and fought for me until the very end. Victoria was great too and was always able to quickly get me an appointment when needed. There were others whose names I don’t remember who also helped. The entire team was amazing!! Thank you so much!! I will forever be grateful!! I’m so glad that I found them through these reviews and want to pay it forward to others looking for an attorney. These guys truly are the best! Go with them. You won’t regret it!
Dora Munguia
Dora Munguia
18:17 18 Feb 24
Very professional group. Extremely helpful.
Tony Ortiz
Tony Ortiz
18:48 14 Feb 24
Wasatch Defense is amazing! They work quickly, took my calls/ texts at all different hours, helped me understand everything, I wouldnt go to anyone else.
Marshay Blair
Marshay Blair
15:01 08 Feb 24
Lane, Darrell and their team were incredible to work with. Everyone is so professional. I was very impressed with the work ethic and knowledge they had. They have been working hard for my husband’s case thus far and it makes me feel confident along with heard and supported especially from Darrell and Lane. I appreciate their whole team. I would definitely recommend Wasatch Defense Lawyers to anyone needing counsel!
Diana Sanaphanh
Diana Sanaphanh
01:27 06 Feb 24
Very impressed with the service they provided, prompt response to questions, issues resolved in a timely manner.
Squatch
Squatch
17:29 05 Feb 24
Scott did a great job with my case I couldn’t have expected a better outcome would definitely recommend
Inkedbyerik Tattoos
Inkedbyerik Tattoos
17:55 23 Jan 24
Best of the best, Lant Clark gets it done quick and clean.
Aizdan
Aizdan
19:04 18 Jan 24
Wasatch Defense Lawyers was honest with us. We came to him with a case of a relative that was a very heavy case.He was upfront and honest advice if they and how they can defend the case.I have huge respect to him because he empathized with us and our situation.I highly recommend them for any legal help in the state of Utah!!
Justine Faith Baity
Justine Faith Baity
23:24 17 Jan 24
Scott Wilding, Lane Clark and Victoria were absolutely amazing to work with. They answered my questions and I had plenty of them. I learned so much more about the law system and grateful for the knowledge that I learned.
Jen Webb
Jen Webb
00:13 09 Jan 24
What a great team at Wasatch Defense. I have been pleased with their experience and knowledge. Just look at the cases they have won. Their team's responsiveness to my questions and made the process incredibly smooth. I recommend Wasatch Defense to anyone in need of legal assistance. Thanks!
S L
S L
20:47 03 Jan 24
So I want to say that this defense office is outstanding at what they do!! Scott Wilding is the best attorney I have ever encountered!! He has so much passion and drive, as well as strong leadership qualities. He has treated me with the upmost respect. Like I was his family and friend. He invested his heart and intelligence to get me the best deal possible. And let me tell you when all the bases were loaded and it was the bottom of the last inning. He stepped up to the plate and grand slammed it, the ball landed in the stadium parking lot. For reals he did the impossible. Thank you Scott and everyone else that got me through this case!! Just amazing all around. Definitely #1 hands down!!Angel Archuleta
Angel Archuleta
Angel Archuleta
00:15 21 Dec 23
Wasatch Defense Lawyers provided a successful defense in a case filed against me. I cannot say enough good things about their legal team. With certainty, compassion, and confidence Scott, Reed, & Lane guided me through one of the most stressful periods of my life. They were diligent in following up on all aspects of my case and showed good judgment & assistance in providing a prompt & agreeable resolution. Thankful I went with Wasatch Defense Lawyers & would recommend anyone with a legal issue to procure their services without hesitation.
Ryan
Ryan
03:04 04 Dec 23
The lawyer my husband worked with told us what he could do and what he could not do for our case.
M Mickunas
M Mickunas
05:20 30 Nov 23
Lane helped my father, & he was very honest & upfront about how he could help. Would give him 10 stars if I could.
Daniel Mickunas
Daniel Mickunas
20:50 28 Nov 23
I've been working with Lane for almost three years to help my son who is in prison. It's easy to be forgotten when so much time passes, but Lane kept us in mind and did as much as he could to help.
Timothy Mickunas
Timothy Mickunas
19:53 28 Nov 23
Very professional upstanding lawyers with amazing advice!
Carter Cook
Carter Cook
05:24 28 Nov 23
Knowledgeable, professional, great to work with.
Jenny Cook
Jenny Cook
05:23 28 Nov 23
Very professional staff and gave us great advice.
Christopher Cook
Christopher Cook
05:21 28 Nov 23
Best lawyer in Utah! Highly recommend! Very helpful and kind.Also his staff is wonderful! Great communication!
Peggy A Campbell
Peggy A Campbell
21:42 18 Nov 23
They stood with me through the whole process and even got me bail when everyone said I never would. They also did such an amazing job that in the end the case was dropped. If you need someone to have your back come to them.
Michael Garcia
Michael Garcia
16:41 17 Nov 23
I don't think I have enough space here to fully detail how much I appreciate these guys! Here are a few highlights from my experience:Anytime I had a question and reached out to Lane, he responded immediately. I always knew what was happening throughout the process and I had the information I needed.The team provided very realistic expectations for the outcome of my case and I never felt like I was being under-represented. I believe they always had my best intentions in mind while working on my case and provided a sense of calm during a very stressful time which was a relief for me and my family.Their level of professionalism was very confidence inspiring and I am grateful that I choose them to represent me!Edit: even months after my case Ashley has been incredibly helpful!
Cameron W
Cameron W
18:25 11 Nov 23

Criminal Defense Attorney News

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Meet Our Salt Lake City, Utah Criminal Defense Lawyers

Language Translation Available

Wasatch Defense Lawyers is happy to make an interpreter available. We also have fluent German and Spanish speaking attorneys.

Criminal defense attorney awards graphic - Wasatch Defense Lawyers in Salt Lake City, Utah

Salt Lake City’s Wasatch Defense Lawyers will Aggressively Defend Your Rights and Quality of Life in Utah.

Contact an Award-Winning Criminal Defense Attorney in Salt lake City

Frequently Asked Questions

Should I Hire a Defense Lawyer if I am Guilty?

Yes. A defense lawyer may be able to lower your charges or get them dropped, even if you are guilty. We may even be able to arrange more favorable outcomes such as community service, driving re-education classes, or other measures instead of jail time.

How Much Does a Criminal Lawyer Cost?

The exact cost will depend on the particulars of your case. If the case goes to trial, that will add expenses. At Wasatch Defense Lawyers, we offer a range of different rates, structures, and payment plans. Which one you will fall under will depends on the individual details of your case. We offer flat fees, hourly rates, military discounts, and even work on contingencies.

What Does a Criminal Defense Lawyer Do?

A criminal defense lawyer’s job is to get you the best possible outcome for your case. We’ll look for mistakes in paperwork or gaps in the prosecutor’s argument. Finally, we can explain your options and repercussions at every step of the process to you. Mistakes you make in paperwork or missed deadlines and court appearances could cost you. Criminal defense lawyers may be able to get your sentence reduced or dropped.

Should I Hire a Criminal Attorney for a DUI Case?

Yes. The State of Utah has just lowered the BAC limit for drivers to .05 percent. This is a sharp reduction from the nationwide average of .08 percent, which makes the state the strictest in the country. A defense lawyer can work to reduce charges, get a reduced sentence, or help with DUI charges to get them totally dropped.

What Is the Most Serious Kind of Crime?

The most serious level of crime is a felony. Misdemeanors are less serious, and infractions are the least serious crimes. Felony crimes are usually classified by first, second, and third degrees of seriousness. The first degree represents the most serious level of offense. The levels of seriousness of crimes determine the corresponding degrees of severity of penalties imposed on people convicted of the offenses.

To clarify, misdemeanors include offenses such as petty theft, vandalism, trespassing, etc. Conviction of a crime at this level does not carry prison time and is limited instead to small fines and other relatively light consequences. By contrast, examples of felony crimes include murder. aggravated assault, kidnapping, arson, etc. Convictions for the most extreme of these crimes can carry long prison sentences or even the death penalty.

What Are the Classifications of Types of Crimes?

Crimes are usually classified as felonies, misdemeanors, and infractions. The basic difference between felonies and misdemeanors, in terms of the law, is in the severity of the potential penalties the law requires. Pleading guilty or being found guilty of a more serious crime can be expected to come with a more extreme penalty than a conviction for a lesser offense.

Being convicted of a felony carries penalties ranging from large fines to prison time up to life sentences, even the death penalty. By contrast, a misdemeanor sentence often includes a moderate fine, possibly community service hours, perhaps mandatory counseling, and/or other reformative requirements.
There are many types of crimes. Some basic categories of crimes criminologists recognize include:

  • Violent crimes: such as murder, kidnapping, rape, assault
  • Organized crime: such as racketeering, gambling, trafficking
  • Property crimes: like vandalism, arson, burglary, theft
  • White-collar crimes: like fraud, embezzlement, securities crimes
  • Tech crimes: hacking, spreading viruses.
  • Victimless crimes: such as consensual but illegal adult sexual activity

How Can a Person Avoid Jail Time for a Felony?

The most critical action you will need to take in an effort to avoid prison time for a felony is to contact an experienced Salt Lake City, UT, criminal defense attorney as soon as possible. Further, you should diligently do the following while you are facing criminal charges:

  • Exercise your right to remain silent.
  • Stay calm and fully cooperate physically.
  • Call an experienced criminal defense attorney to help you.
  • Clearly understand the charges against you.
  • Tell your lawyer the complete truth. Don’t lie to your lawyer.
  • Do not talk to your friends or family about your case.
  • Do not discuss your case on social media.
  • Do not try to investigate or question witnesses yourself.

How Long Can a Criminal Case Be Left Open Without Any Charges?

Generally, the statute of limitations for bringing a felony charge is three years. However, in some types of cases, the time frame may be longer, such as in fraud, felony sex crimes cases, and possibly others. There is no statute of limitations for bringing a murder charge. Typically, the statute of limitations for bringing a misdemeanor charge is one year.

Can a Criminal Defense Attorney Help in a Personal Injury Case?

A large factor in a personal injury case is proving who is at fault. A defense attorney can negotiating with insurance companies and communicating with other involved parties on your behalf. A defense lawyer can also help you put an accurate monetary value on your injury so you can pursue a settlement.

Why Have a Defense Lawyer for Child Support or Custody Case?

Family law can be a complicated legal tangle. A defense lawyer can help you understand the process, your rights, and your responsibilities. Your lawyer can also help you strengthen your case for a fair custody division, and enforcement of such orders.

What is the Difference Between a Defense Attorney and a Prosecutor?

A defense attorney represents the person who has been accused of a crime. Their objective, if the case goes to trial, is to argue against the validity against the prosecutor’s case. Meanwhile, a prosecutor represents the city, county, or state in criminal cases. They are typically a representative of the District Attorney. They will gather evidence, determine which evidence has merit, and try to persuade the court of the accused’s guilt. The burden of proof is on the prosecutor.

What is a Criminal Defense Lawyers’ Duties and Responsibilities?

A criminal defense lawyer has a variety of duties and responsibilities. These include interviewing their client, investigating the case for grounds for acquittal, assisting with jury selection if a trial occurs, arguing against the prosecutor’s case, and helping with plea bargains and sentencing. Above all, they are expected to understand the law and explain your rights and legal options to you.

Do I Have to Answer Questions From the Police When I’m Accused of a Crime?

You are not legally required to provide any information to a police officer. Do not give any statement to a police officer before you contact a criminal defense lawyer and obtain guidance. If you are concerned that the police are investigating you, an experienced criminal defense attorney will ensure that your rights are fully protected throughout the legal process.

Why Do People Commit Crimes?

In some cases, alcohol or drug effects can cause a loss of inhibitions and self-control and negative psychological and physiological changes that impact decision-making. The altered mental state can influence behavior and lend to criminal actions. But, in many other cases, substance abuse is not necessarily involved in criminal activity. Naturally, the root causes of crime are too complex to explain fully here.

Most generally speaking, theories of criminal behavior focus on several categories of behavioral factors, including social, psychological, and even biological. Each of the behavioral factors below and others fall into one of those categories of potential contributors to criminal behavior:

  • Poverty
  • Parental neglect
  • Drug addiction
  • Family conditions
  • Societal conditions
  • Peer pressure
  • Unemployment
  • Underemployment
  • Racism
  • Poor health care
  • Bad housing
  • Weak schools
  • Mental illness
  • Low self-esteem
  • Alcoholism
  • Single-parent families
  • Drug addiction
  • Teenage pregnancy
  • Politics
  • Religion