Being convicted of a violent crime can dramatically change your life. You will have a criminal record, pay penalties, be put on probation, and may even face jail time. This will affect not only you but your job, friends, and family. Your family may suffer from association with you, being bullied or shunned by the neighbors and community at large. If you are facing criminal charges, contact a Pittsburgh criminal defense attorney to help you fight your case.
The following is a partial listing of crimes that fall under the category of violent crimes:
- Conspiracy to commit murder
The charge of robbery is considered a third-degree felony and is punishable by up to seven years in prison. If another person was injured during the commission of the crime, the charge could be upgraded to a second-degree felony which carries a ten-year prison sentence. With such harsh penalties, you have a lot to lose if you are convicted.
Murder charges are graded into three degrees. First-degree murder is the most severe of the three, and is the charge given when there is evidence that a person has deliberately planned and carried out the murder. A conviction will result in a sentence of life in prison. Second-degree murder is the charge given when a victim dies in the process of a felony crime like robbery. A conviction will result in a prison sentence that could be as long as life. Third-degree murder is the catch-all charge for the rest of the deaths that happen due to a person’s violent behavior. The penalty for this charge is a prison sentence of 40 years.
Pennsylvania defines rape as engaging in sexual intercourse with another person by forcing or threatening them to comply with the act. You also need a rape charges defense if you are being charged with substantially impairing the victim by intoxicating them without their knowledge or if they have a mental defect and cannot legally consent. Indecent assault is getting sexual gratification through indecent contact, that may not necessarily involve penetration, without the other party’s consent.
There are various sexual assault defenses which the attorney may use in court. The burden of proof is on the prosecutor to prove beyond a reasonable doubt that the plaintiff did not give consent. In cases where it can be proven that the defendant was somewhere else or that it was someone else who committed the crime, a case of mistaken identity may be argued. Along with consent, the plaintiff may have voluntarily consumed the intoxicating substance. In certain cases, an insanity plea may be the best option if it can be shown that the defendant didn’t realize what they were doing.
A Pittsburgh violent crimes attorney will defend you against charges of assault and battery, domestic violence, and several other charges of a violent nature. You don’t have to face this alone, hire a knowledgeable attorney today and give yourself the best chance of an acquittal.
Remember that your Pittsburgh criminal defense attorney will need all the facts. Don’t hesitate to trust and confide in him, so he can work his hardest for you. He will use the facts of your case to plan an effective defense.