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Have your or your loved one been charged with Aggravated Assault, Attempted Murder, Simple Assault and/or other related charges?   Your life and freedom are at risk.   I accept my role as your lawyer in the fight of your life.    I am the lawyer who will offer you tactical, dynamic, comprehensive, and compassionate defense.

Whether being charged as a member of a conspiracy, or as a sole participant, your defense hinges on a skilled attorney throughout the entire process, including the preliminary hearing.   Common defenses are misidentification, fabrication, mere presence, self-defense, defense of others, and defense of property or insanity.   

Your defense will generally begin with a vigorous investigation and attacking the credibility of eye-witnesses.   No stone is left unturned.  In addition to hiring private investigators, medical records, phone records and social media are good tools to uncover exculpatory evidence. 

The following are definitions of Aggravated assault and Simple Assault

PA 18:2702  Aggravated assault

(a)  Offense defined.–A person is guilty of aggravated

     assault if he:

            (1)  attempts to cause serious bodily injury to another,

        or causes such injury intentionally, knowingly or recklessly

        under circumstances manifesting extreme indifference to the

        value of human life;

            (2)  attempts to cause or intentionally, knowingly or

        recklessly causes serious bodily injury to any of the

        officers, agents, employees or other persons enumerated in

        subsection (c) or to an employee of an agency, company or

        other entity engaged in public transportation, while in the

        performance of duty;

            (3)  attempts to cause or intentionally or knowingly

        causes bodily injury to any of the officers, agents,

        employees or other persons enumerated in subsection (c), in

        the performance of duty;

            (4)  attempts to cause or intentionally or knowingly

        causes bodily injury to another with a deadly weapon;

            (5)  attempts to cause or intentionally or knowingly

        causes bodily injury to a teaching staff member, school board

        member or other employee, including a student employee, of

        any elementary or secondary publicly-funded educational

        institution, any elementary or secondary private school

        licensed by the Department of Education or any elementary or

        secondary parochial school while acting in the scope of his

        or her employment or because of his or her employment

        relationship to the school;

            (6)  attempts by physical menace to put any of the

        officers, agents, employees or other persons enumerated in

        subsection (c), while in the performance of duty, in fear of

        imminent serious bodily injury; or

            (7)  uses tear or noxious gas as defined in section

        2708(b) (relating to use of tear or noxious gas in labor

        disputes) or uses an electric or electronic incapacitation

        device against any officer, employee or other person

        enumerated in subsection (c) while acting in the scope of his

        employment.

        (b)  Grading.–Aggravated assault under subsection (a)(1) and

     (2) is a felony of the first degree. Aggravated assault under

     subsection (a)(3), (4), (5), (6) and (7) is a felony of the

     second degree.

        (c)  Officers, employees, etc., enumerated.–The officers,

     agents, employees and other persons referred to in subsection

     (a) shall be as follows:

            (1)  Police officer.

            (2)  Firefighter.

            (3)  County adult probation or parole officer.

            (4)  County juvenile probation or parole officer.

            (5)  An agent of the Pennsylvania Board of Probation and

        Parole.

            (6)  Sheriff.

            (7)  Deputy sheriff.

            (8)  Liquor control enforcement agent.

            (9)  Officer or employee of a correctional institution,

        county jail or prison, juvenile detention center or any other

        facility to which the person has been ordered by the court

        pursuant to a petition alleging delinquency under 42 Pa.C.S.

        Ch. 63 (relating to juvenile matters).

            (10)  Judge of any court in the unified judicial system.

            (11)  The Attorney General.

            (12)  A deputy attorney general.

            (13)  A district attorney.

            (14)  An assistant district attorney.

            (15)  A public defender.

            (16)  An assistant public defender.

            (17)  A Federal law enforcement official.

            (18)  A State law enforcement official.

            (19)  A local law enforcement official.

            (20)  Any person employed to assist or who assists any

        Federal, State or local law enforcement official.

            (21)  Emergency medical services personnel.

            (22)  Parking enforcement officer.

            (23)  A magisterial district judge.

            (24)  A constable.

            (25)  A deputy constable.

            (26)  A psychiatric aide.

            (27)  A teaching staff member, a school board member or

        other employee, including a student employee, of any

        elementary or secondary publicly funded educational

        institution, any elementary or secondary private school

        licensed by the Department of Education or any elementary or

        secondary parochial school while acting in the scope of his

        or her employment or because of his or her employment

        relationship to the school.

            (28)  Governor.

            (29)  Lieutenant Governor.

            (30)  Auditor General.

            (31)  State Treasurer.

            (32)  Member of the General Assembly.

            (33)  An employee of the Department of Environmental

        Protection.

            (34)  An individual engaged in the private detective

        business as defined in section 2(a) and (b) of the act of

        August 21, 1953 (P.L.1273, No.361), known as The Private

        Detective Act of 1953.

            (35)  An employee or agent of a county children and youth

        social service agency or of the legal representative of such

        agency.

            (36)  A public utility employee or an employee of an

        electric cooperative.

        (d)  Definitions.–As used in this section, the following

     words and phrases shall have the meanings given to them in this

     subsection:

        “Electric or electronic incapacitation device.”  A portable

     device which is designed or intended by the manufacturer to be

     used, offensively or defensively, to temporarily immobilize or

     incapacitate persons by means of electric pulse or current,

     including devices operated by means of carbon dioxide

     propellant. The term does not include cattle prods, electric

     fences or other electric devices when used in agricultural,

     animal husbandry or food production activities.

        “Emergency medical services personnel.”  The term includes,

     but is not limited to, doctors, residents, interns, registered

     nurses, licensed practical nurses, nurse aides, ambulance

     attendants and operators, paramedics, emergency medical

     technicians and members of a hospital security force while

     working within the scope of their employment.

  

PA 18:2701  Simple assault.

        (a)  Offense defined.–A person is guilty of assault if he:

            (1)  attempts to cause or intentionally, knowingly or

        recklessly causes bodily injury to another;

            (2)  negligently causes bodily injury to another with a

        deadly weapon;

            (3)  attempts by physical menace to put another in fear

        of imminent serious bodily injury; or

            (4)  conceals or attempts to conceal a hypodermic needle

        on his person and intentionally or knowingly penetrates a law

        enforcement officer or an officer or an employee of a

        correctional institution, county jail or prison, detention

        facility or mental hospital during the course of an arrest or

        any search of the person.

        (b)  Grading.–Simple assault is a misdemeanor of the second

     degree unless committed:

            (1)  in a fight or scuffle entered into by mutual

        consent, in which case it is a misdemeanor of the third

        degree; or

            (2)  against a child under 12 years of age by an adult 21

        years of age or older, in which case it is a misdemeanor of

        the first degree.

Self Protection, or Self Defense is defined as:

PA 18:505 Use of force in self-protection.

(a)  Use of force justifiable for protection of the person.–The use of force upon or toward another person is justifiable when the actor believes that such force is immediately necessary for the purpose of protecting himself against the use of unlawful force by such other person on the present occasion.
(b)  Limitations on justifying necessity for use of force.–
(1)  The use of force is not justifiable under this section:
(i)  to resist an arrest which the actor knows is being made by a peace officer, although the arrest is unlawful; or
(ii)  to resist force used by the occupier or possessor of property or by another person on his behalf, where the actor knows that the person using the force is doing so under a claim of right to protect the property, except that this limitation shall not apply if:
(A)  the actor is a public officer acting in the performance of his duties or a person lawfully assisting him therein or a person making or assisting in a lawful arrest;
(B)  the actor has been unlawfully dispossessed of the property and is making a reentry or recaption justified by section 507 of this title (relating to use of force for the protection of property); or
(C)  the actor believes that such force is necessary to protect himself against death or serious bodily injury.
(2)  The use of deadly force is not justifiable under this section unless the actor believes that such force is necessary to protect himself against death, serious bodily injury, kidnapping or sexual intercourse compelled by force or threat; nor is it justifiable if:
(i)  the actor, with the intent of causing death or serious bodily injury, provoked the use of force against himself in the same encounter; or
(ii)  the actor knows that he can avoid the necessity of using such force with complete safety by retreating, except the actor is not obliged to retreat from his dwelling or place of work, unless he was the initial aggressor or is assailed in his place of work by another person whose place of work the actor knows it to be.
(2.1)  Except as otherwise provided in paragraph (2.2), an actor is presumed to have a reasonable belief that deadly force is immediately necessary to protect himself against death, serious bodily injury, kidnapping or sexual intercourse compelled by force or threat if both of the following conditions exist:
(i)  The person against whom the force is used is in the process of unlawfully and forcefully entering, or has unlawfully and forcefully entered and is present within, a dwelling, residence or occupied vehicle; or the person against whom the force is used is or is attempting to unlawfully and forcefully remove another against that others will from the dwelling, residence or occupied vehicle.
(ii)  The actor knows or has reason to believe that the unlawful and forceful entry or act is occurring or has occurred.
(2.2)  The presumption set forth in paragraph (2.1) does not apply if:
(i)  the person against whom the force is used has the right to be in or is a lawful resident of the dwelling, residence or vehicle, such as an owner or lessee;
(ii)  the person sought to be removed is a child or grandchild or is otherwise in the lawful custody or under the lawful guardianship of the person against whom the protective force is used;
(iii)  the actor is engaged in a criminal activity or is using the dwelling, residence or occupied vehicle to further a criminal activity; or
(iv)  the person against whom the force is used is a peace officer acting in the performance of his official duties and the actor using force knew or reasonably should have known that the person was a peace officer.
(2.3)  An actor who is not engaged in a criminal activity, who is not in illegal possession of a firearm and who is attacked in any place where the actor would have a duty to retreat under paragraph (2)(ii) has no duty to retreat and has the right to stand his ground and use force, including deadly force, if:
(i)  the actor has a right to be in the place where he was attacked;
(ii)  the actor believes it is immediately necessary to do so to protect himself against death, serious bodily injury, kidnapping or sexual intercourse by force or threat; and
(iii)  the person against whom the force is used displays or otherwise uses:
(A)  a firearm or replica of a firearm as defined in 42 Pa.C.S. 9712 (relating to sentences for offenses committed with firearms); or
(B)  any other weapon readily or apparently capable of lethal use.
(2.4)  The exception to the duty to retreat set forth  under paragraph (2.3) does not apply if the person against whom the force is used is a peace officer acting in the performance of his official duties and the actor using force knew or reasonably should have known that the person was a peace officer.
(2.5)  Unless one of the exceptions under paragraph (2.2) applies, a person who unlawfully and by force enters or attempts to enter an actors dwelling, residence or occupied vehicle or removes or attempts to remove another against that others will from the actors dwelling, residence or occupied vehicle is presumed to be doing so with the intent to commit:
(i)  an act resulting in death or serious bodily injury; or
(ii)  kidnapping or sexual intercourse by force or threat.
(2.6)  A public officer justified in using force in the performance of his duties or a person justified in using force in his assistance or a person justified in using force in making an arrest or preventing an escape is not obliged to desist from efforts to perform such duty, effect such arrest or prevent such escape because of resistance or threatened resistance by or on behalf of the person against whom such action is directed.
(3)  Except as otherwise required by this subsection, a person employing protective force may estimate the necessity thereof under the circumstances as he believes them to be when the force is used, without retreating, surrendering possession, doing any other act which he has no legal duty to do or abstaining from any lawful action.
(c)  Use of confinement as protective force.–The justification afforded by this section extends to the use of confinement as protective force only if the actor takes all reasonable measures to terminate the confinement as soon as he knows that he safely can, unless the person confined has been arrested on a charge of crime.
(d)  Definition.–As used in this section, the term criminal activity means conduct which is a misdemeanor or felony, is not justifiable under this chapter and is related to the confrontation between an actor and the person against whom force is used.

Use of force for the protection of others is defined as:


PA 18:506 Use of force for the protection of other persons.

(a)  General rule.–The use of force upon or toward the person of another is justifiable to protect a third person when:
(1)  the actor would be justified under section 505 (relating to use of force in self-protection) in using such force to protect himself against the injury he believes to be threatened to the person whom he seeks to protect;
(2)  under the circumstances as the actor believes them to be, the person whom he seeks to protect would be justified in using such protective force; and
(3)  the actor believes that his intervention is necessary for the protection of such other person.
(b)  Exception.–Notwithstanding subsection (a), the actor is not obliged to retreat to any greater extent than the person whom he seeks to protect.

Use of force for the protection of property is defined as:


PA 18:506 Use of force for the protection of other persons.

(a)  General rule.–The use of force upon or toward the person of another is justifiable to protect a third person when:
(1)  the actor would be justified under section 505 (relating to use of force in self-protection) in using such force to protect himself against the injury he believes to be threatened to the person whom he seeks to protect;
(2)  under the circumstances as the actor believes them to be, the person whom he seeks to protect would be justified in using such protective force; and
(3)  the actor believes that his intervention is necessary for the protection of such other person.
(b)  Exception.–Notwithstanding subsection (a), the actor is not obliged to retreat to any greater extent than the person whom he seeks to protect.

Insanity is defined as:


PA 18:315 Insanity.

(a)  General rule.–The mental soundness of an actor engaged in conduct charged to constitute an offense shall only be a defense to the charged offense when the actor proves by a preponderance of evidence that the actor was legally insane at the time of the commission of the offense.
(b)  Definition.–For purposes of this section, the phrase legally insane means that, at the time of the commission of the offense, the actor was laboring under such a defect of reason, from disease of the mind, as not to know the nature and quality of the act he was doing or, if the actor did know the quality of the act, that he did not know that what he was doing was wrong.

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