Endangering Welfare Of A Child: When Is It A Crime Not To Act?

People are not often punished for what they fail to do.  They are punished for what they do. Generally speaking, failure to take action is not criminal.  Failure to act can expose one to civil liability.  The negligence concept holds accountable professionals who fail to maintain a reasonable standard of care in the course of […]

Pennsylvania Criminal Assault Charges

Simple assault is a relatively common charge in the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, and the city of Philadelphia.  The exact definition of the crime is commonly misunderstood.  Under Pennsylvania Section 2701 of the Pennsylvania Crimes Code a person is guilty of simple assault if he: (1)  attempts to cause or intentionally, knowingly or recklessly causes bodily injury […]

Accelerated Misdemeanor Program (AMP 1)

One of the reasons I choose to practice criminal defense is because I believe that many criminal defendants are essentially good people in bad situations. Recently, District Attorney R. Seth Williams has acknowledged this fundamental premise, and created a series of diversionary programs that place an emphasis on rehabilitation over retribution, or incarceration.  Many of […]

Pizzeria Owner Selling More Than Pie

A Township Pizzeria Owner was recently arrested for drug possession following an incident that occurred in his pizza shop on October 11 after one of his customers lost their winning lottery ticket.  According to the source, the shop owner conspired with a teenage employee to steal the customers $2,500 lottery ticket.  According the news article, […]

When Buying A T-Shirt Becomes A Criminal Offense

The act seems innocent enough.  One day you are at work and your friend brings in T-shirts.  They are really nice T-shirts.  They bear the emblem of the college mascot.  These shirts cost $100.00 in the local bookstore.  Your friend (let’s call her Bonnie) is selling them for $10.00 each. You ask friend Bonnie where […]

Proving Aggravated Assault in the State of Pennsylvania

The crime of aggravated assault is serious business. For the commonwealth to convict a defendant of aggravated assault, the following elements must be proven beyond a reasonable doubt: First, the Commonwealth must show that the defendant attempted to cause serious bodily injury to the victim.  Serious bodily injured in Pennsylvania means injury that would create […]

What is Accelerated Rehabilitative Disposition?

Accelerated Rehabilitation Disposition (ARD) is a common resolution to DUI First Offense and other non violent crimes in Philadelphia.  Eligibility is based on prior criminal records.  Eligible defendants are generally first time offenders charged with relatively minor offenses.  The ARD program enables the state to impose a more lengthy period of supervision than the AMP […]

DUI: First Offense / Highest Tier – Possible Defenses

Driving Under the Influence: First Offense / Highest Tier is a very serious offense in the State of Pennsylvania.  Defendants facing this charge are looking at a mandatory minimum sentence that will affect their future and their finances for years. DUI: First Offense / Highest Tier is a charge that affects anyone arrested for DUI […]