A criminal conviction changes your life forever. It can tarnish your reputation, bring embarrassment to your family, cost you your freedom, and impact your ability to keep your job or get hired for a new one.
With all of this hanging in the balance, it is a good idea to consult a Ridley criminal defense lawyer. Our firm can create solid defense strategies, work to get charges reduced or dismissed, and fight to minimize the overall impact the charge has on your life.
Types of Criminal Cases We Handle
At McKenzie Law Firm, P.C., we have fought on behalf of adults and juveniles charged with criminal offenses such as:
- Domestic violence
- Drug offenses
- Driving under the influence (DUIs)
- Firearm offenses
- Rape and other sex crimes
We also handle cases involving non-violent offenses, like traffic violations.
You can count on our firm to work diligently to protect your rights and fight for an outcome that minimizes the impact the criminal charge has on you and your family. Your freedom matters to us, and we would like to get started on your defense as soon as possible.
The Consequences of a Conviction
A criminal defense lawyer serving Ridley, Pennsylvania can shield you from the worst of the possible penalties associated with the charge against you. These may include:
- Fines: Per 18 Pa. C.S.A § 1101, maximum fines range from $300 for the least serious crimes to $50,000 for murder or attempted murder.
- Other expenses: In some cases, you may be required to pay back the state for the cost of arresting and prosecuting you. You could also be ordered to pay restitution to anyone who was injured by your alleged crime.
- Prison or jail time: The most serious crimes could land you behind bars for decades. Even minor offenses could take your away from your job or your family long enough to cause damage.
- Driver’s license suspension: In DUI cases, you may not be allowed to drive for a period of months or years. This would make it difficult to get to work or attend to your other responsibilities.
All of these penalties could wreak havoc on your personal and professional lives.
How a Criminal Defense Lawyer Can Help You
You may be tempted to represent yourself in court. Before making a decision, it is important to understand all of the work and effort that goes into building a defense. When you work with our firm, we:
Conduct Full Discovery and Use it Strategically
Discovery is the legal term for gathering evidence. We use discovery to debunk the prosecutor’s evidence or clear you of any wrongdoing. We may gather evidence from a wide variety of sources, such as:
- Written statements from eyewitnesses and character witnesses
- Surveillance footage
- Documents, including police records
- Evidence obtained from computer hard drives
- Oral testimony from authorities, experts, and other involved parties
Look for Violations of Constitutional Rights
Our firm uses its knowledge of criminal law to find case inconsistencies and look for violations of your constitutional rights. Violations include:
- Authorities failing to follow criminal procedures
- Police forcing confessions
- Conducting illegal searches of you or your property
- Mishandling evidence or test results
Any sort of violation may be grounds to get the charges dropped. If this happens, you could go home right away.
Know Local Prosecutors and How to Negotiate with Them
Prosecutors often use plea deals to resolve criminal cases. When a defendant accepts a plea bargain, they agree to plead guilty to a lesser charge in exchange for a lighter sentence. For example:
- If you are charged with a capital offense, you could plead guilty to a second-degree felony instead.
- If you are charged with a felony, you could plead guilty to a misdemeanor.
- If you are charged with a Class A misdemeanor, you could plead guilty to a Class B or C misdemeanor.
Knowing the legal landscape and the attorneys that work within it is helpful. With this knowledge, we know when to cut a deal quickly, when it is better to hold out for something better, and when to take your chances at trial.
Know Ways to Expedite or Delay a Case
Every case is unique. Whether you want a quick resolution or to delay your trail for as long as possible, we can come up with a plan that works best for you and your family without jeopardizing your case.
Ask for Punishments That Fit Crimes
Whether you accept a plea deal or are convicted by a jury, we believe the punishment should fit the crime you were found guilty of committing. With this in mind and when it is appropriate, we request lighter or suspended terms of incarceration or enrollment in first, non-violent offender programs.
Help to Expunge Criminal Records
In some cases, we can have your record expunged following a conviction or plea deal. Per The Unified Judicial System of Pennsylvania, this option is reserved for:
- Lesser charges
- Those who were convicted of a summary offense (a very minor offense) and have not been rearrested for five years
- Those who are over 70 and have not been rearrested for ten years
- Other special circumstances
If it is possible, we can help you clear your criminal record through expungement.
A Criminal Defense Firm Working for All Defendants
At McKenzie Law Firm, P.C., we believe all defendants deserve strong legal representation and the chance to have their stories, as well as any mitigating factors, heard. Our goal is to provide compassionate, professional, and respectful legal support to you and your family.
We recognize that facing a criminal conviction is not easy, and we do whatever we can to put you at ease. We want you to have confidence in our legal advice and feel safe telling us anything and everything about your case.
Always Know what Is Happening
Communication matters to our firm. This is why we build your confidence in us by sharing any and all information about your case, such as any major discoveries or whether the prosecution wants to strike a deal. If you are unsure about what a development may mean for you, we can:
- Go over everything in terms you understand
- Spend as much time with you as you need
- Explain the pros and cons of each decision
- Offer a professional perspective on difficult, emotional matters
We Are Always Available
Having a criminal lawyer by your side not only prepares you for what will happen during each phase of the case, but you get the legal support you need during this trying time. Our firm will be there from start to finish to:
- Fight to protect your freedom
- Answer client questions via phone, text, email, or social media
- Respond promptly to all of your questions
Get a Free Consultation Today
Contact one of our criminal defense lawyers serving Ridley, Pennsylvania today. They can start strategizing ways to minimize penalties and the impacts on your freedom and future. Call the McKenzie Law Firm, P.C. at (610) 680-7842 for a free case consultation. We are available to take your call twenty-four hours a day, seven days a week.