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Recent Blog Posts

What Happens if You’re Wrongly Arrested for Shoplifting?

It is fairly common for stores or malls to have private security guards on hand to watch for shoplifters and to handle any other issues that might arise with customers. Because these individuals are not police officers, they may be more prone to mistakes than trained law enforcement officers would be. What do you do […]

What to Know About Juvenile Vandalism Charges

Vandalism is one of the more common crimes that comes up in juvenile court. It’s often an act of rebellion. However, vandalism can lead to destruction of property and expensive cleanup and repairs, which means courts will take the crime seriously. How do courts handle vandalism by teens? Vandalism is defined as the intentional damage […]

Aggravating Factors May Lead to Harsher Consequences

If you are facing criminal charges, there are some aggravating factors that, if present in your case, could increase the severity of the penalties you might face. The following are a few examples of these aggravating factors: Injury: Generally, the more severe the injury the victim suffered, the harsher the penalty the defendant could face. […]

Is Ignorance of the Law Ever a Valid Defense?

You may have heard the phrase “ignorance of the law is no excuse” before. However, there are some cases in which ignorance of the law can be a valid defense, although it’s somewhat rare. In general, it does not matter if you knew an action was illegal when you performed it. However, you should be […]

More Asset Forfeiture Leads to Greater Systemic Abuse

The state of asset forfeiture in Pennsylvania has garnered national attention in recent months, with even the U.S. Supreme Court hearing a case related to the issue. It is not unusual for law enforcement to seize property as part of their investigations. However, over the last several years, lawsuits have detailed how police occasionally abuse […]

Can Police Search Your Cell Phone After an Arrest?

Law enforcement officers have the right to search your person upon placing you under arrest. This includes searching the area in your immediate vicinity, along with your pockets, clothing and bags. But if officers pull out your phone, are they allowed to start searching through the data contained on it? Or do they require a […]

What Sentencing Options Exist in Juvenile Court?

Because jail is usually not an option when a minor is convicted of a crime, juvenile courts have a wider variety of sentencing options available. There are still forms of “incarceration” that can be used for juveniles, but generally, whether or not the juvenile is incarcerated, the focus of the court system is to rehabilitate […]

What to Do If Asked to Take a Lie Detector Test

If you’ve watched crime dramas on TV, you are probably familiar with the general concept of a lie detector test. Basically, a polygraph works by measuring your body’s physiological response to certain questions asked of you. The general philosophy is that your body will have obvious natural responses if you give an answer you know […]

What is Obstruction of Justice?

Obstruction of justice involves any action that interferes with the prosecution or investigation of a criminal offense. There is a great deal of flexibility in what can and cannot be considered obstruction of justice. It often involves hiding suspects from the authorities, lying to police officers or warning someone about a potential subpoena. Some common […]

York County Judge Rules Law Enforcement Overzealous in Property Forfeiture

A judge in York County recently ruled that local law enforcement engaged in a pattern of seizing property with high resale value in criminal cases, even if that property was not linked to drug money or other illegal activities. In the case, a 46-year-old man was arrested in March 2016 for selling heroin to a […]

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