Greg Smith and Associates, Criminal Defense Attorneys

Salt Lake City (Murray)
Free 15 Min. Consultation  :  Nights & Weekends  :  Easy Payments

801-651-1512  -  24/7

Free 15 Min. Consultation 24/7

801-651-1512

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Call 801-651-1512   Call Now 24/7 Free 15 Min Consultation: 24/7, nights & weekends
Typically No Retainer - Easy Payments!*

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Feedback From Satisfied Clients

"The domestic violence and DUI crimes that I was charged with would have ruined my career. Thank you for saving me! You are worth every penny I paid you."

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Office Location

Salt Lake City Office
111 E. 5600 S. #105
Murray, UT 84107

Telephone: 801-651-1512
Fax: 801-255-2134
Salt Lake City Law Office Map



Harsh Sentences Put Spotlight on Minimum Sentencing Guidelines


The judge could only shake her head as she prepared to sentence the defendant. Although he was recently convicted of three armed robberies, the defendant had no previous felony convictions as an adult. However, because he used a gun when committing the crimes, the judge’s hands were tied. Barring a successful appeal, the 24-year-old Utah man will spend the next 57 years behind bars.

Sadly, such stories are not unique to states like Utah. Across the country, defendants are facing what many consider excessive jail time because of federal mandatory minimum sentencing guidelines.

Through a series of laws dating back to 1951, Congress has established and updated mandatory minimum sentences for certain crimes. Most of the laws relate to federal drug crimes, although the use of a firearm in a crime also carries a mandatory minimum sentence. (The Comprehensive Crime Control Act established the minimum mandatory sentences for crimes where a gun is used.)

The U.S. Sentencing Commission is tasked with creating uniform sentencing guidelines for all federal crimes. For twenty years it’s "guidelines" were, in fact, rules that had to be strictly followed. Federal judges were not allowed any flexibility to sentence outside of the required ranges. In 2005, the U.S. Supreme Court found that such mandatory guidelines were unconstitutional and said they should be "advisory."

Unfortunately, this flexibility in sentencing does not extend to those crimes with mandatory minimum sentences. In 2002, the U.S. Supreme Court refused to find the mandatory minimums unconstitutional, despite a U.S. District Judge questioning the severity of a required sentence and even going so far as to request that the President commute the sentence (unsuccessfully).

Recently, a prisoner sentenced to a mandatory 55 years in prison asked the Supreme Court to rethink their previous decision. The Court declined to revisit the issue.

Thus, for the foreseeable future it appears that offenders facing mandatory minimum sentences for federal drug or weapon-related crimes may not receive the respite many attorneys, judges and scholars believe they deserve.

Clients with disabilities or impairments

Access to our office is available to clients and their family members at all times. Special equipment and communication devices are available upon request for our clients with visual, hearing, speech and physical impairment. In addition, arrangements can be made for verbal or sign language interpreters if needed to communicate between our attorneys and the client and family. Please notify our law office if any additional accommodations related to your disability or impairment are necessary to make your consultation more comfortable.

I understand that I am contacting a corporation, not an individual, and that if I do business with the law firm, it will be with that corporation, not any individual(s). I understand that Greg Smith and Associates is not the legal name of the law firm, rather, it is "Affordable Legal Advocates, PC." I also understand that whatever may relate to, or arise out of, any communication with the law firm, which results in any type of legal action, such must be brought in the Third District Court of Utah, West Jordan Department, and that this is mandatory not permissive.

We Can Help You Now

Call 801-651-1512   Call Now 24/7 Free Consultation: 24/7, nights & weekends
Typically No Retainer - Easy Payments!*

Use our secure private form

I have read the disclaimer.

Feedback From Satisfied Clients

"The domestic violence and DUI crimes that I was charged with would have ruined my career. Thank you for saving me! You are worth every penny I paid you."

More Testimonials >

Avvo Clients' Choice Award. 5 Stars
5 Star Rating


   Review Us On Google

Office Location

Salt Lake City Office
111 E. 5600 S. #105
Murray, UT 84107

Telephone: 801-651-1512
Fax: 801-255-2134
Salt Lake City Law Office Map




Greg Smith and Associates, Criminal Law Attorneys, located in Salt Lake City (SLC), also represents clients from communities such as Provo, Orem, Payson, Ogden, Park City, Sandy, Draper, West Valley City, Bountiful, Murray, West Jordan, Taylorsville, Farmington, Alta, Bluffdale, Cottonwood Heights, Draper, Herriman, Holladay, Midvale, Murray, Riverton, Sandy, South Jordan, South Salt Lake, Taylorsville, West Jordan, West Valley City and Richfield; and counties including Salt Lake County, Summit County, Tooele County, Sevier County and Davis County, Utah.

Typically No Retainer - Easy Payments. *Call for details.


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Disclaimer

The information you obtain at this site is not, nor is it intended to be, legal advice. You should consult an attorney for advice regarding your individual situation. We invite you to contact us and welcome your calls, letters and electronic mail. Contacting us does not create an attorney-client relationship. Please do not send any confidential information to us until such time as an attorney-client relationship has been established.

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