Archive for the ‘Drug Crimes’ Category

Foreman & Caraciolo, P.C. Successfully Argues That Statute is Unconstitutional in Franklin County Pennsylvania

In a decision published on April 17, 2014, Judge Carol L. Van Horn of the Franklin County Court of Common Pleas has ruled that that 42 Pa.C.S. A. §9712.1(c) related to mandatory minimum periods of incarceration for offenders possessing a firearm in connection with the manufacture or delivery of a  controlled substance is unconstitutional.

Judge Van Horn utilized the Supreme Court of The United States case of Alleyne v. United States (2013) and reviewed recent decisions of the Pennsylvania Superior and Supreme Courts, as well as recent decisions from other Courts of Common Pleas in her well reasoned opinion published below.

Opinion of the Court

Is Marijuana Legal in Pennsylvania?

Not yet, but a recent proposed Senate Bill seeks to legalize marijuana for medicinal purposes.  Pennsylvania could join the twenty other states which have legalized medical marijuana.  A full copy of the proposed law can be found here. (more…)

Do I need an attorney for ARD or other first time offender program

Many people who take advantage of our free initial consultation ask, either directly or indirectly, whether it is necessary to have an attorney for a first offense when a “first time offender program” like Accelerated Rehabilitative Disposition (ARD) is offered.   In short, it is always best to have an Attorney by your side when you have any Court appearance and a first time offender program is no different.

Initially, it is very important to have an attorney review your matter as a first time offender program may be inappropriate where a valid factual or legal defense exists.  Many people who think that they were caught “red handed” may not realize that he government has a heavy burden when seizing a person or property and evidence that may seem incriminating can sometimes be suppressed due to improper government action.  An attorney should be able to review the facts and the evidence with you during a free consultation and explain the benefits and disadvantages of proceeding either with a first time offender program like ARD, or defending through pre-trial practice and trial. (more…)

Penalty for Alcohol and Marijuana Offenses Unrelated to Recent Research

A recent study in the Journal of Psychopharmacology concluded that Alcohol is more than twice as harmful as cannabis to users and that increased policing of marijuana usage results in only the criminalization of young people with no significant reduction in Health related risks.  Although this study is based on United Kingdom research, the conclusion is supported by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention that suggested the rate of alcohol and marijuana consumption is increasing although resultant injuries are only increasing in children that consume alcohol.  One study even suggests that the driving after imbibing alcohol is more dangerous than driving after imbibing marijuana and legalization of marijuana has the benefits of reduced alcohol purchase and consumption and reduction in vehicle related accidents and fatalities. (more…)

DUI Drug Convictions

Under the way the current law is written, you do not have to actually be intoxicated at the time you are driving to be convicted of a drug-related DUI.    (more…)