Criminal Charges Demand Best Defense Attorney

All Criminal Charges Demand the Very Best Defense Attorney

While all cases, both civil and criminal, should have the finest attorney possible, criminal defense is unlike civil defense. The stakes, quite frankly, are much higher, as depending upon the charges, incarceration may occur, or even the death penalty. The incarceration can also be lengthy, depending upon the charges. 

Prosecutors do not enter criminal charges until they feel they have a great chance of winning a case. Therefore the preparation of a prosecutor is generally very thorough, leaving no stone unturned. 

Prosecutors are generally elected officials and must focus on winning enough cases to maintain their official standing or be voted out. This means a “bulldog” of an opponent for a defense attorney. (1) Some might not be elected but appointed, but all need to win to keep their positions. 

Choosing an inexperienced defense attorney for criminal charges can lead to incarceration, loss of reputation, and of course, a criminal record that will follow a person for life. Some criminal charges come as a surprise to individuals as they do not realize they have committed a criminal offense. An excellent example of this that occurs routinely is the selling of either online or even by word of mouth of SNAP or EBT food stamp cards.

These offerings are federally or state-funded through taxpayer dollars and can be prosecuted by the State or Federal government. The sections of this code and the penalties for such behavior are spelled out in the Code of Federal Regulations (2) that is offered to each recipient upon approval of SNAP (3) or EBT (4) cards. 

SNAP cards (Supplemental Nutrition Assistant Program) can only be used for food but not other necessities. EBT cards (Electronic Benefits Transfer) cards can be used for any necessity by a parent or guardian of a person that is approved for the program. 

In either case, these cards can and are sold for a fraction of the cost many times, and others do not realize the seriousness of this behavior. If enough of this behavior exists, it can turn into a prosecution of the offender.  

Since the State of PA loses millions of dollars through these programs each year, offenses are taken very seriously by the Office of State Inspector General, and judges are becoming very harsh in the sentencing process. (5) 

9 Differing Degrees of Criminal Charges 

Criminal charges are considered felonies, but the severity of the crime is what dictates the punishment. (6)

Class A—Heinous crimes such as murder can result in life imprisonment, lengthy sentences, and large fines. These are generally murder and homicide in the first degree. In some states, the death penalty can be in place. 

Class B—These also can have life imprisonment imposed or a life of probation. Manslaughter, kidnapping, terroristic activities, and conspiracies of many types fall into this category. 

Class C—These can vary from state to state but carry hefty penalties as well, with sexual assault, kidnapping, armed robbery, and arson usually included. 

Class D—There are variations of this type from vehicular homicide and solicitation of a child. The penalties also can be severe, ranging from about 25 years to life, depending upon the surrounding circumstances. Any DUI (Driving Under the Influence) will compound the sentence as that in itself is an offense.((7)

While DUI can be considered civil, if someone is injured or killed because of the use of drugs or alcohol while driving, then it does become criminal

Class E—Battery, burglary and robbery can fall into this category, and the penalties can range from hefty fines to long prison sentences, again according to circumstances. The use of a weapon during any battery, assault, or robbery makes the charges more extensive. 

Class F—Sexual exploitation, theft, and stalking are in this category. Stalking was only recently considered a crime since 1999, as it causes emotional harm to a victim with the possibility of injury. (8) 

Class G—Theft, embezzlement, negligent homicide, and forgery. Negligent homicide can occur when an unintentional act while driving causes death, while individuals do not realize that forgery and embezzlement are not civil crimes but criminal offenses. 

Class H—Stalking (if it is not serious or long-term) and false imprisonment. False imprisonment, by definition, is not allowing a person to have freedom of movement and is different than kidnapping. 

False imprisonment can occur during abusive relationships. False imprisonment might only be civil unless the imprisonment is so complete as to provide any barrier to escape. (9)

Class I—This includes child pornography, some types of stalking, battery, and theft. It has the least amount of penalties many times, but the severity must be established by the prosecuting attorney. 

Summary—Choosing the Best Defense Attorney for Criminal Charges

Most individuals are shocked when they learn they are being charged criminally. There are many ways to run afoul of the law of a criminal nature that most do not understand. Since some charges are especially life-changing and can even include the death penalty, the very best criminal defense attorney with experience in criminal defense should be chosen. 

Prosecutors come into a case to win at all costs. Defendants need the same advantage. There are both mitigating and aggravating circumstances in each case, and only a great defense attorney will have the knowledge and resources to discover all aspects of defense.  Mitigating circumstances can incur fewer penalties, while aggravating circumstances (which a prosecutor will focus on) will undoubtedly lead to stricter penalties. Christian J. Hoey, ESQ, with his team at Hoey Legal in Paoli, PA, does explore all avenues of the cases before them that need exceptional criminal defense. 

Tenacity and confidence, as well as years of experience, do count in criminal defense, and with decades of this type of defense under his legal belt, Christian J. Hoey, ESQ, can and does provide the best defense possible no matter what the charges. Do not allow unqualified or inexperienced individuals to handle any criminal defense case, as life and livelihood can be at stake.

Hoey Legal is always prepared for battle in a courtroom against even the most ferocious prosecutors. As a former Federal Prosecutor, Christian Hoey knows the opposition and brings his years of experience to assist all clients in all types of criminal cases.  

Distracted Driving

Pennsylvania defines distracted driving as “an activity that could divert a person’s attention away from the primary task of driving.” Drivers have to focus on driving, so they can react to the information on the road, such as road conditions, hazards and other drivers. Distracted drivers do not react appropriately and thus put others at risk for severe injury or death. Examples of distractions, besides using cell phones and texting, include drinking, eating, adjusting the radio, adjusting climate controls, adjusting seats, combing hair, putting on make-up, daydreaming, reaching for dropped items, engaging in heavy conversations, and focusing on events outside of the car.

Driving Under the Influence

Driving under the influence typically refers to alcohol use, but drug use can also impair drivers and cause severe car accidents.  In either situation, enjoying cocktails at happy hour, celebrating with drugs or alcohol, drinking too much wine for dinner and unwinding after a long week at work results in too many motorists driving under the influence.  Controlled substances impact each person differently, making it common for someone to misjudge his or her level of impairment.  These poor judgments can lead to severe and sometimes fatal car accidents.

Driver Fatigue

Driving without enough sleep is commonplace for many in the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania and across the nation. Truck drivers, shift workers, and those with sleep disorders are most vulnerable to causing an accident because they are drowsy or fatigued. Not having enough rest slows down reaction time and impairs the senses. In fact, the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) claims that eighteen (18) hours without sleep impairs a driver to the same extent as someone who has a 0.08 blood or breath alcohol concentration after consuming alcohol.


The National Highway Transportation Safety Administration (NHTSA) estimates that one-third of all car accidents involve speeding. Drivers who rush, run late, or simply lack patience may choose to speed when they get behind the wheel. Speeding makes it more likely that a driver will lose control of his or her vehicle and makes it more difficult to react to road hazards and other vehicles. Speeding also increases the impact of a car accident and makes it far less likely that a negligent driver may maintain control of his vehicle sufficient to prevent a collision. High speed car accidents make it far more likely that those involved will suffer severe injuries or death.


At HoeyLegal, we know from our litigation experience that tractor-trailer drivers often operate at least one cellular phone which is in use at, during, or immediately prior to a tractor-trailer accident. Additionally, most tractor-trailers are equipped with data recorders which capture, in real-time, important vehicle operation events including speed, hard braking and other evasive maneuvers taken by the operator and the tractor-trailer.  It is imperative that this evidence be obtained before it is destroyed.  At HoeyLegal, our trial attorneys will obtain any necessary court order to preserve this evidence for trial.


Oftentimes, there are several defendants responsible for the tractor-trailer accident. In most cases, at least two defendants are responsible for the ownership and operation of the tractor-trailer.  There may be additional defendants responsible for the hiring and retention of the tractor-trailer driver.  At HoeyLegal, our investigators will promptly identify the responsible defendants and immediately request the preservation of all evidence related to the hiring and retention of the driver, inspection of the vehicles and the supervision and drug/alcohol testing of the vehicle operator.


Our accident investigators include mechanics who will immediately respond to the accident site and the location where the truck has been impounded in order to photograph the truck and conduct necessary mechanical inspections of the vehicle. In the event that a court order is necessary to examine and inspect the trucks, HoeyLegal Attorneys will promptly file the necessary motions to enable the HoeyLegal mechanics and inspectors to conduct a prompt evaluation of the mechanical function of the at-fault tractor-trailer


Our expert accident investigators include former Pennsylvania State Police accident investigators and nationally recognized engineers who will carefully photograph the accident scene and conduct all necessary measurements of skid marks, yaw marks, displacement of debris and thoroughly examine the accident site to preserve all evidence for the time of trial.


Our investigators will promptly interview and record all witnesses that observed the accident and collect all biographical information from the witnesses so they will available to testify on your behalf at trial.

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