Getting To Not Guilty Part One: When Character Counts

Character or reputation can play a significant role in getting to “Not Guilty.”  Under the Pennsylvania Rules of Criminal Procedure, the defense has a right to call witnesses to testify to the defendant’s good character.  After the State puts on its case, the defense may offer evidence that the defendant has a good reputation for […]

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 […]

Aggravated Assault in Pennsylvania

Aggravated Assault is a felony offense in Pennsylvania carrying a maximum sentence of ten to twenty years in prison.  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 […]

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 […]

Philadelphia Criminal Law Resources

Any criminal charges can have lasting repercussions on your life.  The impact, especially after the initial arrest, is utterly confusing, embarrassing, and in some situations, devastating to the arrestee and his family members. It is critical, especially for those with limited prior contacts with the criminal system to seek out the necessary resources that can […]