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    Can You Beat Your Criminal Case in Philadelphia?

    Taking a Criminal Case to Trial in Philadelphia

    Residents of the Philadelphia area who are facing criminal charges often want to know whether they can beat their cases. In fact, the most common question from our clients is, “can I win my case?” The answer, of course, depends on the facts of each case. There are two main issues which must be examined carefully and thoroughly:

    • whether there are any valid legal issues (i.e., constitutional violations), and
    • what the odds of winning at trial are.

    Valid Legal Issues & Defenses

    The first question is whether there are any valid legal issues which can get the case dismissed outright. For instance, there may be double jeopardy issues or constitutional violations. A 4th Amendment search which resulted in seizure of evidence may be illegal, and therefore, evidence may be suppressed. As an example, our office recently argued a 4th Amendment violation issue in an auto stop drug seizure case in Philadelphia. The court ruled in our client’s favor.

    If certain evidence is suppressed, the case may be dismissed. Alternatively, the prosecution’s case may be seriously weakened, thus increasing the chances of success at trial.

    Are there any other legitimate legal defenses, such as the statute of limitations, evidentiary issues, etc.? In some instances, a criminal prosecution may have been instituted too late. Pennsylvania statute of limitations laws vary for crimes. Misdemeanors and felonies generally have corresponding statute of limitations periods of anywhere between 2 years to 12 years. For some types of cases, like murder, there is no statute of limitations.


    Winning a Criminal Trial in Philadelphia

    Hands down, the most common question criminal defendants who are facing long sentences have is, “what are the odds of winning at trial?” The answer often depends on the factual issues in the case and whether there is sufficient evidence that casts doubt on the testimony of witnesses for the District Attorney’s Office. In other words, can the prosecution prove what they have to prove? Are there factual weaknesses that can be exposed?

    More: Who is the Best Criminal Lawyer for Your Philadelphia Criminal Case?

    For example, in a murder case where an eyewitness places the accused individual at the scene of the crime just before the murder occurred, there may be credible evidence that the witness was intoxicated. Producing witnesses who can testify that the eyewitness was drunk or had been drinking could make all the difference at trial.

    However, it is important to note that jury trials are like crap shoots. The success of a criminal case depends on the judge’s rulings and the jury, two things which are beyond the control of the person on trial.

    Also, having an experienced criminal trial lawyer makes a difference. Some people relate to jurors more than others and can therefore sway a jury for their client. If you have a pending criminal case in Philadelphia and you want to go to trial, make sure your criminal defense lawyer has a good trial record. When your life and livelihood are on the line, you don’t want to be a guinea pig.

    Disclaimer: This website does not create any attorney-client relationship or provide legal advice. Our lawyers provide legal advice only after accepting a case. It is imperative that any action taken is done on advice of counsel. Read full disclaimer below.





    David S. Nenner

    "Top Rated Criminal Defense Lawyer"

    MURDER, Att. Murder CHARGES – Negotiated Significantly Lower prison sentence (Feb. 2022, PHILA)

    Mr. Anderson faced murder and attempted murder charges after an incident in Northeast Philadelphia involving the shooting death of Anderson’s sister’s boyfriend and the boyfriend’s roommate who was shot 5 times and survived. The decedent had previously beaten the...


    The Commonwealth alleged that Mr. Shelton shot and seriously injured a male in a bar in North Philadelphia called Circles. There was video of the shooting which happened outside the bar. However, Mr. Nenner presented witnesses who testified that the person in the bar...


    Mr. Nenner's client was charged with multiple crimes (murder, conspiracy, aggravated assault, robbery, etc.) after a shooting death occurred at a gambling house in North Philadelphia. At trial, Mr. Nenner successfully presented a self-defense argument and convinced...


    Mr. Nenner’s client was charged with murder and gun charges in Philadelphia. The client was accused of shooting and killing another male on Arch Street near the 5600 block of Ithan Street in Philadelphia. The jury returned a verdict of not guilty after deliberating...

    Drug Possession Case – Motion to Suppress Granted

    Mr. Nenner presented evidence that to show that the traffic stop was a pretextual stop. The officer had no reason to pull the car over. The judge agreed and suppressed the evidence. As a result, the prosecution withdrew the charges.

    Sentencing for 1st Degree Murder in PA

    In this article below we discuss sentencing for 1st degree murder cases in Pennsylvania. In later articles, we will discuss sentencing for 2nd and 3rd degree murder cases. If you or a loved one is facing murder charges in Philadelphia or the surrounding counties,...

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    In criminal trials in Philadelphia, one pretty common defense tactic is pointing the finger at another person at trial. This can raise enough doubt to result in a not guilty verdict by the judge or jury that the defendant was not the perpetrator of the crime. Here’s...

    Philadelphia Murder & Gun Possession Cases Increasing in 2021 – A Look at Common Charges & Defenses

    A look at PA criminal law for Murder (1st, 2nd, 3rd Degree), Aggravated Assault, Robbery, Possession of a Firearm, Carrying a Firearm Without a License, Carrying a Firearm in Philadelphia (misdemeanor).

    Pennsylvania Murder Charges, Deceased Person’s Statements Used to Prove Guilt

    Defense Trial Strategies – Excluding Statements That Accuse the Defendant Prosecutors often look to a deceased individual’s statements made prior to a murder to show that the defendant is guilty. These statements may point to a history of violence between the deceased...

    Pennsylvania (State) Drug Charges, Dog Sniffs & Constitutional Law

    Federal and Pennsylvania state courts treat narcotics dog searches differently. So different that the same scenario could result in different outcomes in federal versus state court. For example, a Philadelphia resident is pulled over for speeding. During the traffic...