One aspect of Criminal Defense work that seems to bring about the most questions and/or confusion is the issue regarding the continuance of a criminal case. Criminal cases are continued when one side, either the Commonwealth (the prosecution) or the Defense is not ready to proceed to trial. In the anatomy of a Criminal Defense case, a case is scheduled for a trial and usually one or both sides aren't ready to proceed to trial at the first listing of the case. If one party is not ready to proceed to trial, then that side may request that the Judge grant them a continuance. Corruption of Minors Frequently, the court will grant each side at least one continuance to prepare for trial or file motions. Parties are typically able to ask for more than one continuance of their case, in particularly when the case is very serious. Make sure to consult with an experienced Chester County Criminal Defense attorney if you are requesting that your Criminal Defense case be continued.
One particular type of Violent crimes that an individual can be charged with in the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania is the charge of Possessing an Offensive Weapon. Under this statute an Offensive weapon is defined as a firearm as well as a litany of other types of weapons which many people possess. Possessing a firearm charge This list of weapons includes obvious weapons such as bombs (pipe bombs etc), sawed-off shotguns with a barrel less than 18 inches, metal knuckles, daggers, knifes, razors or cutting instruments, the blade of which is exposed in an automatic way by switch, push-button, spring mechanism, and even tasers.
One fairly serious Violent crime which you can be charged with in the state of Pennsylvania is the charge of Possessing an Instrument of Crime. You can be charged with this crime if the government believes that you possessed an instrument of crime with the intent to employ it criminally. Defenses to Violent Crimes Under the statute, an instrument of crime is defined as: Any item that is specially made or adapted for criminal use (such as wooden stake or an item used for breaking into vehicles) or any item that is used for criminal purposes and possessed under circumstances not obviously appropriate for any lawful uses it may have. (such as someone found to be in possession of a firearm while breaking into a person's home).
One of the more frequent types of violent crimes that arises in criminal cases occurs when an accused threatens someone with a firearm. Threatening someone with a firearm can range anywhere from pointing a firearm at someone, cocking a gun, or even motioning to a sidearm that an accused may have holstered. Read about justification defenses here Make sure that you speak with an experienced Chester County Violent Crimes attorney if you are being investigated for or have been charged with violent crimes such as threatening someone with a firearm.
The Child Protective Services Act provides ways to protect children who are the target of suspected child abuse, such as over disciplining their child or sexual abuse. Once a report of suspected child abuse is made, an investigation is carried out by a governmental agency called Children Youth & Services (CYS). Although this sounds like a very noble endeavor, if you are an innocent parent or guardian being investigated for an allegation of child abuse, a Children Youth & Services investigation is a very scary proposition. You can find yourself in a statewide database or even loose custody of your child.
I think that it is safe to say that most people operate under the assumption, "if I did nothing wrong, then there is no reason for me to speak with the police without the assistance of an attorney." Frequently, however, this simply is not the wise thing to do.
If you have been charged with or you are being investigated for a Violent Crime like the crime of Aggravated Assault, it is imperative that you retain the services of an experienced Aggravated Assault Attorney immediately. Aggravated Assault is a very serious crime. In most instances, Aggravated Assault is graded as a felony of the first degree and punishable by up to 20 years in prison. Before we analyze possible defenses to the crime of Aggravated Assault, we must understand the elements that the government must prove beyond a reasonable doubt in order to obtain a conviction against the accused.