Lancaster County Criminal Defense Attorney

Protect yourself in court with a criminal defense lawyer who has over 30 years litigation experience in the Pennsylvania court system.

The field of Criminal Law is both complex and simple. The sheer number of laws that Pennsylvania has enacted and the complicated procedures that are used to administer them can be very complex. But if you are the target of a criminal prosecution, there is nothing simpler — you need an experienced Lancaster County criminal defense attorney to represent you in court. Even simple charges can become complicated if not handled properly by the right criminal defense lawyer.

Criminal violations that could result in a felony conviction require experienced legal representation from a criminal attorney.

Lancaster PA Criminal Defense Lawyer in PennsylvaniaMore serious criminal violations can result in heavy fines and imprisonment. Assaults, thefts, drug and gun cases can be felony offenses, the most serious criminal offenses in Pennsylvania short of murder.

Conviction of a felony is a life-changing event. Virtually any felony conviction will send the offender to state prison with huge fines and the loss of the right to vote, possess a gun and to hold certain jobs. A qualified criminal defense attorney should be contacted as soon as possible after arrest for a criminal violation. Lancaster Attorney R. Russell Pugh has represented people accused of serious crimes in Pennsylvania for more than 30 years, successfully litigating hundreds of cases in court.

Sex offenses in Pennsylvania are particularly difficult violations for the accused. Almost all of them are felonies. They also mark the accused with more humiliation and public embarrassment than other kinds of offenses. Pennsylvania has enacted Megan's Law, a statute that requires sex offenders to register with the State Police when they move or take a new job and, in some cases, to require their neighbors and co-workers to be notified of their prior conviction for a sex offense. These requirements may last for ten years or life. Obviously, being charged with a sex offense in PA is extremely serious and requires experienced and knowledgeable legal representation to handle it. Lancaster, PA Attorney R. Russell Pugh has represented people accused of sex offenses in Pennsylvania for more than 30 years.

Being arrested for DUI can change your life if not handled properly.

If you are charged with Driving Under the Influence or Driving While Intoxicated, secure an experienced Pennsylvania DUI attorney to protect your rights and negotiate your case.

Pennsylvania has tough DUI laws that allows the police to arrest you with a blood-alcohol reading of only .08%, about 2 drinks for the average person. The penalties in Pennsylvania get more severe as the blood-alcohol ratio increases, with very substantial penalties at .10% and higher including mandatory jail sentences and lengthy license suspensions. Pennsylvania's ARD Program (Accelerated Rehabilitative Disposition) allows many first-time offenders in PA to avoid jail and shorten the suspension but the time limits and technical requirements for ARD make it difficult for unrepresented people to gain admission into the program. A criminal law attorney with specific experience litigating Pennsylvania DUI cases should be consulted immediately after arrest to increase your chance for ARD.

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Motor-vehicle violations and traffic citations in Pennsylvania often become more than just a minor offense.

Many people consider motor-vehicle violations and traffic citations minor offenses, but there are pitfalls that can trap those uneducated in criminal law. Many traffic citations in PA carry points or license suspensions that can put your driving privileges at risk. Failure to timely respond to a citation can result in a license suspension. Loss of one's driver's license can make getting to work or school extremely difficult, if not impossible. A Pennsylvania criminal defense lawyer experienced in motor-vehicle violations like R. Russell Pugh should be contacted immediately after a traffic stop to protect your driving privileges.

The right criminal lawyer makes all the difference in the Pennsylvania criminal appeal process.

Even if you have been convicted of a crime, the legal case may not be over. A person convicted of a crime in Pennsylvania has the right to appeal or to pursue post-conviction relief (PCRA). Very few criminal defense attorneys have the unique knowledge and experience to handle these cases. Lancaster, PA criminal lawyer R. Russell Pugh has argued hundreds of criminal cases on appeal and is one of the very few lawyers in Lancaster County with broad and deep experience with the post-conviction system. Arguing a case on appeal is one of the most challenging jobs an attorney can perform and only one with extensive criminal appeal experience, like R. Russell Pugh should be consulted.

The guidance of a lawyer experienced in Pennsylvania pardon law can increase your odds for a favorable outcome.

If all else fails, a pardon may be the only way to gain relief from a criminal conviction. The Governor of Pennsylvania is empowered to release an offender from the consequences of a conviction, in effect "erasing" the conviction from the offender's record. However it is extremely difficult to obtain a pardon. The process is long and slow and most Pennsylvania pardon applications are denied. The odds of success are better if the crime is relatively minor and many years have elapsed since the conviction. The assistance of a criminal lawyer experienced with the pardons process can also improve the odds. Attorney R. Russell Pugh has won pardons for clients convicted of DUI, theft, drug possession and other crimes in Pennsylvania.

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