Recent statistics show that the crime rate in Pennsylvania is 25% lower than the national rate, which is good news. But any criminal lawyer will tell you that there are still thousands of people who need a strong defense after being arrested for violent crimes, no matter where you live.
The Law Office of Steven F. O’Meara has extensive experience as a criminal defense lawyer helping clients accused of violent crimes. It’s become clear that knowing the five most common types of violent offenses in Pennsylvania will help people understand the risks of committing these crimes.
5 Common Violent Crimes in Pennsylvania
A violent criminal conviction can result in a long prison sentence and term of probation. When you complete your sentence, your options for housing, education and employment may be limited due to these convictions.
The five most common types of violent crimes in Pennsylvania include:
- Murder – Is the killing of another person or homicide, murder is the intentional act of taking another person’s life. In Pennsylvania, the standard for a first-degree murder charge is whether the defendant had malice (intent) to kill.There are several different levels of Murder, the more serious is first-degree murder. For a conviction the commonwealth must show that the act was premeditated.
- Rape – In Pennsylvania, rape is a violent crime that is defined as engaging in sexual intercourse with another person through force or threat, or with a person who is unconscious or unable to give consent due to their age or mental faculties.
- Aggravated Assault – This is typically a physical assault in which the defendant uses some type of weapon with the intent of causing serious, permanent harm to a victim,or causing the victim to fear that harm was imminent. It can also be a single punch to the victim’s head which causes serious permanent injury.
- Kidnapping – In Pennsylvania, kidnapping is defined as the unlawful removal of a person from one place to another location or place,by force or threat of force, and without the victim’s permission. In reality, a victim may be taken from one part of a building to another and the distance is not considered.
- Robbery– Can be strong arm robbery or a robbery involving the use of a weapon. The difference between a robbery and a simple theft, is the actual use or threat of force upon the victim.
Although these are serious violent crimes, a Pennsylvania criminal defense lawyer can offer you the kind of vigorous defense that can win an acquittal or convince a prosecutor to reduce the charges and agree to a reasonable plea bargain.
Contact a Pennsylvania Criminal Defense Attorney for Your Defense
After you’re charged with a crime, your first responsibility is to hire an experienced criminal lawyer to represent you. No matter how much evidence a prosecutor has, the job of a Pennsylvania criminal defense attorney is to create reasonable doubt in the mind of one juror.
The Law Offices of Steven F. O’Meara has spent over 25 years fighting for the rights of defendants that are charged with felonies, misdemeanors and summary offenses. Our first step is to meet with you immediately after your arrest, so we can hear your side of the story, and begin crafting our defense strategy. Time is of the essence, which is why we urge you to contact us right after your arrest, so that we can find eyewitnesses and preserve evidence on your behalf. Please contact us today at 610-565-9200 to schedule your free consultation.