Sexual assault charges shouldn’t be taken lightly. They can end in significant prison time, impact your personal life, and make it difficult to find employment.
If you’ve been charged with sexual assault, you have the right to legal counsel. A criminal defense lawyer from our team can evaluate your case. We’re prepared to fight for justice, and may be able to prove your innocence, or reduce your prison sentence.
Common Sexual Assault Case Challenges
When you’re accused of sexual assault, it’s common to face a similar set of challenges. They include:
- Unfamiliarity with legal proceedings: Sexual assault laws and criminal codes in Pennsylvania are complicated. They involve seemingly endless rules, guidelines, and procedures. If you’re unfamiliar with these laws, you might find yourself stressed and confused.
- You don’t know your rights: The Pennsylvania constitution provides a series of protections to those accused of sexual assault. Failing to understand the extent of these rights could result in self-incrimination.
- You’re unsure about working with a public defender: Everyone has the right to legal counsel. This means that you’ll be appointed a public defender if you don’t hire a private lawyer. However, public defenders are often stretched between many different clients and must divide their resources and energy. Our team would happily discuss how our representation differs from a public defender during a free case evaluation.
After receiving a criminal charge – knowledge is power. However, there’s a reason lawyers need to study law and pass Bar exams before starting their practice. It takes years to get a firm grasp on these laws. This presents a distinct risk to those with pending charges – if you don’t know the law, it’s easy to make costly mistakes.
This is where a Philadelphia, PA sexual assault defense lawyer from our firm comes in. Alongside advocating for your innocence or a reduced sentence, we can ensure that you know exactly what’s going on throughout your case. As your defender, we have the resources and time to dedicate to your case.
For a free legal consultation with a sexual assault defense lawyer serving Philadelphia, call 215.515.3360
Working With a Sexual Assault Lawyer From Our Firm
At the Law Offices of M.J. Snyder, LLC, we’re proud to provide a suite of legal services, including:
- Reviewing evidence to ensure that your rights weren’t violated
- Negotiating a plea deal
- Providing prompt answers to all your tough legal questions
- Explaining all your options in detail
- Gathering new evidence
- Acting as your voice during a trial
Above all, our goal is to prove your innocence or reduce your sentence through a plea deal. However, we also believe that working with a lawyer should be a positive experience. We pride ourselves on our accessibility, clarity, and transparency. You can call us whenever you need – we’re in your corner until the conclusion of your case.
The Benefits of Free Case Evaluation
On the fence? Our offices provide initial case evaluations, the benefits of which include:
- They’re free of charge: We won’t charge you for an initial case evaluation. This is your time to better understand our firm and your case.
- No strings attached: Calling our offices for a free case evaluation comes with no obligation. If you speak with us and decide to look elsewhere for a law firm, you are free to do so.
- Helps you understand how we can help: We rely on case evaluations to better understand our potential clients. During this initial meeting, we can discuss how and if we can support you.
Why Choose Our Firm?
Our firm is led by attorney Marni Jo Snyder. She’s a native Philadelphian and committed to providing tenacious legal defense. Her accolades include:
- Villanova University Law School Graduate
- Multiple Bar admissions
- Extensive legal experience – Snyder has worked on thousands of criminal defense cases
Our firm is supported by our team of paralegals and Brianna Shaw, another attorney with impressive accomplishments. Above all, we’re deeply familiar with matters of criminal defense and can put this knowledge to work for you.
Philadelphia Sexual Assault Defense Lawyer 215.515.3360
Should I Take a Sexual Assault Plea Deal?
Plea deals are easy to misunderstand because they involve a person who’s been charged with a crime admitting guilt. Why admit guilt instead of going to trial? However, there are a few ways that plea deals can be beneficial:
- Plea deals involve negotiation: During the plea deal process, the defense and prosecution enter negotiations. A defense lawyer can use these negotiations to reduce the prison sentence of their client.
- Some cases can’t be won: In some sexual assault cases, the prosecution has such strong evidence that a defense lawyer cannot prove the innocence of their client. By entering a plea deal, they can use negotiations to produce a more positive outcome. This allows defense lawyers to maintain control over difficult cases.
Our legal team can advise you if you believe you should enter a plea deal and weigh the pros and cons of this approach. Should we decide to enter a plea deal, we’ll pursue the best outcome possible. We won’t force you to enter a plea deal if you’re not comfortable doing so, though.
What Is Considered Sexual Assault in Philadelphia?
In Philadelphia, and the rest of the state of Pennsylvania, sexual assault occurs when someone has intercourse (or deviate intercourse) with another individual without their consent. Notably, in Pennsylvania, sexual assault differs from rape. Rape only applies to cases that include:
- Use of force
- Threat of force
- A victim unable to consent due to drugs or alcohol
- A victim who is unconscious
- A victim who is suffering from a mental disability
Rape and sexual assault are both serious charges, though. Conviction of rape will result in a first-degree felony, and conviction of sexual assault will result in a second-degree felony. Any felony conviction, regardless of degree, involves long prison sentences.
Prison and Criminal Charges
A criminal charge is not the same as a conviction. Charges are like accusations and signal that prosecutors believe they have enough evidence to convict you of a crime. However, you still have the right to due process. In some cases, charges are dropped after the defense team uncovers new evidence.
Speak With a Philadelphia, PA Sexual Assault Defense Lawyer Today
We believe that everyone has the right to fair and thorough legal representation. Let us put your frustrations and concerns to rest. Contact our firm today to learn how a Philadelphia, PA sexual assault defense lawyer can help you.