Category Archives: Ask The Lawyer

Learn What Options You Have In Philadelphia Criminal Trials

April 1, 2019

Once your case is held for court and gets past the preliminary hearing, you will have four basic options as to how your case will progress.  Your choices are:  1. Jury Trial; 2. Judge or Waiver Trial; 3. Negotiated Guilty Plea; and 4. Open Guilty Plea.  The difference between a jury trial and a waiver…

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The Best Criminal Defense Attorney can Help at Your Preliminary Hearing

March 17, 2019

While not as important as your Trial, your Preliminary Hearing is still very important. So, what happens at a Preliminary Hearing? Essentially, a Judge (or in some communities, a District Justice) has to determine if the charges that have been filed against you should go forward to the trial stage. This is done after the…

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What is the Stop and Frisk Law in Pennsylvania and Philadelphia

February 6, 2019

Can the police in Philadelphia stop and frisk you without a good reason? No. A stop-and-frisk refers to a brief non-intrusive police stop of a suspect. The Fourth Amendment requires that before stopping the suspect, the police must have a reasonable suspicion that a crime has been, is being, or is about to be committed…

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Should You Take the Stand at Your Criminal Trial?

December 31, 2018

After the Commonwealth (or State) rests in your criminal case you will have a chance to put on a defense by providing evidence and testimony. One such evidence is your direct testimony, i.e, you taking the stand. But should you? Theoretically, the trier of fact (a judge or a jury) cannot hold it against you…

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The Best Criminal Defense Attorney Won’t Have the Defendant Testify at a Criminal Preliminary Hearing

November 29, 2018

If you have ever been involved in or watched a Criminal Preliminary Hearing — afterwards you might have wondered why the defendant didn’t take the stand. The reason that the defendant rarely, if ever, takes the stand is because of the legal rules of a preliminary hearing. Since credibility is not assessed, the judge has…

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Why the Best Criminal Defense Attorney Will Get You a Not Guilty Verdict (but not prove that you are innocent)

October 24, 2018

Lay people and the media (who should know better) often claim that they (or someone else) were found innocent even though technically this has never happened in a criminal trial in the history of the United States. That’s because in our justice system, there are only two possible verdicts in criminal case: guilty and not…

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What are the Qualifications for ARD for a DUI Arrest in Philadelphia and in Pennsylvania Generally?

September 25, 2018

First of all, what is ARD? Accelerated Rehabilitative Disposition (ARD) is a special pre-trial intervention program in the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, United States for non-violent offenders with no prior or limited record. In the City of Philadelphia a person can qualify for the ARD Program if: 1. they have no previous misdemeanor or felony convictions…

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The Best Criminal Defense Attorney Will Ask for a Motion for a Directed Verdict

August 29, 2018

What exactly is a Motion for Directed Verdict in a Criminal Case in Philadelphia Pennsylvania? Well, let’s say that you were charged with Aggravated Assault, chose to have a jury trial and the Commonwealth just rested their case. Now, before the Defense puts on a case, your criminal defense lawyer can make a Motion for…

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Can I Expunge My Criminal Record in Pennsylvania?

January 24, 2018

As of October 2016 certain criminal convictions can be expunged from your record in Pennsylvania. The Pennsylvania expungement law allows for the expungement of convictions for misdemeanors of the 2nd or 3rd degree (often notated as M2 or M3), after ten years have passed and the person is conviction free. The crime cannot be punishable…

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You Will Still Need the Best Criminal Defense Lawyer if Your Appeal is Granted

January 9, 2018

The first thing that you need to understand about your Criminal Appeal is that you were only challenging the errors in the criminal process or in the application of the law.  You will not get an automatic acquittal via an appeal and you are not automatically guaranteed a new trial.  You may get an acquittal…

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