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Questions Answered by Zak Taylor Goldstein
1 Answer | Asked in Criminal Law for Pennsylvania on
Q: If a child accidentally shoots another child with a gun obtained by the child’s mom’s boyfriend, is the mom liable?

Hypothetical question

Zak Taylor Goldstein
Zak Taylor Goldstein answered on May 26, 2018

Probably not criminally, although a creative prosecutor could probably come up with something. There could be civil liability.

2 Answers | Asked in Criminal Law, Civil Rights and White Collar Crime for Pennsylvania on
Q: Do you have to be made aware of a search warrant? Are you privy to the inventory (or copy of it) found in the search?

If the police issued a warrant for my cell and their probable cause for the search IS A LIE, can the whole thing (case) be thrown out? Do I have a right to know my phone records are being searched? Do I have a right to know WHAT was found during the search?

Zak Taylor Goldstein
Zak Taylor Goldstein answered on May 26, 2018

If you are charged with a crime, the prosecution will have to turn the warrant over in discovery. If you can prove that the warrant is defective or that it contains intentional lies, then the results of the search could be suppressed. You do not have to be provided with a copy of a warrant in... Read more »

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2 Answers | Asked in Criminal Law for Pennsylvania on
Q: What Pennsylvania case law allows for a police officer to search a vehicle when the subjects admits to having drugs

And where can the officer search? Just the area the subject admitted to having or to the entire vehicle?

Zak Taylor Goldstein
Zak Taylor Goldstein answered on May 26, 2018

A police officer can search a car when they have probable cause to do so under Commonwealth v. Gary. If they have probable cause to search the car, they can search the entire car and any containers therein. Probable cause means that a reasonable person would expect to find contraband as a result of... Read more »

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2 Answers | Asked in Criminal Law, Civil Rights and Landlord - Tenant for Pennsylvania on
Q: How long does defendant have to file an appeal if new evidence is avaiable to present that wasn't available at hearing.

Other charges thrown out from lying witnesses. Charges were harassment,lewd, disorderly conduct. Engage in fighting.

Note: NO FIGHT OCCURED DEFENDANT HOLDING FOOD IN ARM & then both hands in pockets as lying plaintiff made gestures then when asked if he wanted to hit me he ran upstairs &... Read more »

Zak Taylor Goldstein
Zak Taylor Goldstein answered on May 26, 2018

If you have already been convicted, you have one year from the date of sentencing or when the appeals were finished if you appealed to file a PCRA based on after-discovered evidence. If you are outside of that one year deadline, you have sixty days to file a PCRA from when you learn about the new... Read more »

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1 Answer | Asked in Criminal Law for Pennsylvania on
Q: so my son was charged with 2 counts of CA when he was 15 years old. The charges were for indecent touching of a minor.

They were from when he was 13 years old and it was a time in his life when he was curious. anyways he is now going to be 21 in June and these charges are showing up on the CA background check. My son has not been in trouble since this incident, and is going to college and what I'm trying to find... Read more »

Zak Taylor Goldstein
Zak Taylor Goldstein answered on May 1, 2018

Depending on the charges, you may be able to file for an expungement. Speak with a local lawyer.

1 Answer | Asked in Criminal Law for Pennsylvania on
Q: Can he sue? What can he do?

My fiancé was charged with corruption of a minor four years ago and placed on probation. The girl was 15 (which he didn’t know) and he was 19. She lived in PA and him in MD. He was charged in PA. All they did was get food, go bowling, watch a movie at his house, and kiss some. He did have her... Read more »

Zak Taylor Goldstein
Zak Taylor Goldstein answered on May 1, 2018

No, not if he was convicted of the crime.

2 Answers | Asked in Criminal Law for Pennsylvania on
Q: In the State of Pennsylvania can you seal a misdemeanor theft of unlawful taking (1st degree) if it was your first time?

Governor signed Senate Bill 166 and i read this also ...

"SB 166 amends Title 18 (Crimes and Offenses) to allow individuals who have served their punishment and remained free of arrest or prosecution for seven to ten years, for nonviolent misdemeanors, to petition the court for their record... Read more »

Zak Taylor Goldstein
Zak Taylor Goldstein answered on May 1, 2018

No, you cannot seal a misdemeanor of the first degree.

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1 Answer | Asked in Criminal Law and Juvenile Law for Pennsylvania on
Q: Is it illegal for a 20 year old to date a 17 year old?
Zak Taylor Goldstein
Zak Taylor Goldstein answered on Apr 15, 2018

No, that is not illegal.

1 Answer | Asked in Appeals / Appellate Law and Criminal Law for Pennsylvania on
Q: On an appeal, do I need to have a criminal attorney from the county in which the original trial took place?
Zak Taylor Goldstein
Zak Taylor Goldstein answered on Mar 25, 2018

No, criminal appeals are all done through e-filing, and they consist mostly of writing briefs to make arguments based on the record. Sometimes there are oral arguments that could require travel, but many appeals do not involve oral argument. You can hire any attorney who is licensed in the... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Criminal Law for Pennsylvania on
Q: Hello I got charged with false report in Pennsylvania would I go to jail for that
Zak Taylor Goldstein
Zak Taylor Goldstein answered on Mar 25, 2018

It depends on your record and what the report related to. If you have no prior record, you may be eligible for a diversionary program like ARD. If you have a bad prior record and falsely accused someone of a serious crime, the consequences could be more severe.

1 Answer | Asked in Criminal Law and Child Custody for Pennsylvania on
Q: Title 18 2t06 drug delivery resulting in death....minimum sentence...does it apply if acused pleads guilty...

My x pled guilty. And she has my son hid from me sentencing is the 26th....no custody agreement...will she get time and does she lose rights due to pleading guilty

Zak Taylor Goldstein
Zak Taylor Goldstein answered on Mar 25, 2018

There is no mandatory minimum sentence, but drug delivery resulting in death is a form of homicide punishable by up to 40 years in jail. It is basically the same as third degree murder. The sentencing guidelines call for years in jail even for a plea. However, she may have negotiated something. In... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Criminal Law for Pennsylvania on
Q: Can I purchase a firearm in PA with a marijuana charge when I was a minor ?

I was denied from my background check from an arrest when I was a minor 15 years ago. I was arrested for marijuana and had to do community service , no time served or probabtion. Am I not allowed to buy a firearm with that charge ?

Zak Taylor Goldstein
Zak Taylor Goldstein answered on Mar 25, 2018

It depends on the exact charge and disposition. Most juvenile adjudications do in fact prevent you from owning a firearm in Pennsylvania.

1 Answer | Asked in Criminal Law for Pennsylvania on
Q: How long can they hold you in jail?

My boyfriend has been held for over 30 days now in county because he tested positive for weed at his P.O. visit. How long can they keep him there without telling him when he can expect to be released? He applied for a public defender but hasn’t heard anything yet.

Zak Taylor Goldstein
Zak Taylor Goldstein answered on Mar 25, 2018

He could be held for the maximum possible penalty for the charges for which he is on probation. For example, if he is on probation for an M2, he could be held for two years. With that said, in most counties, the judge will schedule a hearing on a technical violation within a month or two. In some... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Criminal Law for Pennsylvania on
Q: My friend is being charged with having a handgun .. He has a felony on his record. Aggrivated assult with a gun .

And murder in the middle of a robbery

What is the max time for each?

Zak Taylor Goldstein
Zak Taylor Goldstein answered on Mar 25, 2018

That is a serious charge, particularly if he has felony convictions including murder. A felon in possession could face up to twenty years in jail on the 6105 charge and even more time on the other gun charges with which he is also probably charged.

1 Answer | Asked in Criminal Law for Pennsylvania on
Q: As a SVP is there a way to get help paying for polygraphs while in treatment through public defender as I am indigent?

I am residing in Butler County and receiving treatment as an SVP after serving 12 years 8 months and I am currently on state parole. I was sentenced by Jefferson County courts. Butler County public defender office says I can but I must go through my sentencing county. Jefferson county (my... Read more »

Zak Taylor Goldstein
Zak Taylor Goldstein answered on Mar 25, 2018

You should talk to the public defender about whether you really have to register as an SVP at this point. The SVP portion of the SORNA statute was found unconstitutional by the Superior Court. There may be a petition you can file to challenge the requirement, and the public defender may be pursuing... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Criminal Law for Pennsylvania on
Q: Can my husband be sentenced without his lawyer present??

On March 12 my husband showed at york county courthouse in york pa for a probation intake. Upon entering was told he had warrant was booked and told he was in holding cell until he could see a judge. Warrant was for failure to appear for probation violation from a 2014 1st dui conviction, got 2nd... Read more »

Zak Taylor Goldstein
Zak Taylor Goldstein answered on Mar 25, 2018

No, you cannot be sentenced without your lawyer present unless you don't have a lawyer and have decided to proceed pro se. This would be grounds for a new sentencing hearing on appeal or through a PCRA.

1 Answer | Asked in Contracts and Criminal Law for Pennsylvania on
Q: Does a conviction for 'falsifying a gov. document' alone fall under the term fraud?

I'm a contractor trying to regst. in PA. Form asks if contact has ever been convicted of a crime of fraud. Not sure if that constitutes a "Yes". Conviction was for trying to purchase firearm and answering question wrong.

Zak Taylor Goldstein
Zak Taylor Goldstein answered on Mar 25, 2018

You probably need to speak with an attorney who specializes in these types of contracts and registration documents. The term fraud could have a specific meaning on the form, or they could be asking about fraud in a general sense. In a general sense, it could involve lying on government documents,... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Criminal Law for Pennsylvania on
Q: What if an officer signs a criminal complaint under penalty of PA title 18 S 4904 that he KNOWS is untrue?

It is a DUI case and he has the height listed as 7' 74" tall and showing that the driver was driving on a 16 year old expired drivers license. He did not file a charge for the license because it was not actually expired.

Zak Taylor Goldstein
Zak Taylor Goldstein answered on Mar 25, 2018

If an officer lies in police paperwork, that could be used to impeach the officer at a motion to suppress or trial. Depending on how big the lie/mistake/omission is, the error could have an impact on whether the judge or jury believes the officer. In most cases, officers do not face any kind of... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Criminal Law for Pennsylvania on
Q: My husband and I were drinking, and the next thing I remember was waking up to a pool Of blood with my head cut open.

I instinctively called 9-1-1 and told them I was bleeding and needed help. My husband of course not happy about this, was obviously we must’ve been fighting to the point he hit me. I don’t remember anything leading up the hit nor do I remember being hit. The cops arrested him, I was taken to... Read more »

Zak Taylor Goldstein
Zak Taylor Goldstein answered on Mar 25, 2018

There is not much an attorney can do for you, but your husband needs a good one. The police and District Attorney have decided to move forward with the case. You can tell them the truth - you do not know what happened, you could have fallen, you do not want them to pursue charges, and you are not... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Criminal Law and Family Law for Pennsylvania on
Q: My girlfriends Ex is telling their daughter he does not want her or her sisters to be around me.

He is telling her that they are not little girls anymore and now they have “boobs”. He is also trying to prevent me from moving in with the mother and has said that he will do everything in his power to keep me from living in the same house. The daughter, the father speaks to, has also said to... Read more »

Zak Taylor Goldstein
Zak Taylor Goldstein answered on Mar 25, 2018

This does not really seem to involve criminal law, but these situations can be messy. Your girlfriend may need a family lawyer to get custody agreement or order in place. It's not really up to the ex who the children spend time with when your girlfriend has custody of them.

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