Category : appeals
Updated Penn State Scandal and Jerry Sandusky Sentencing
Former Penn State assistant football coach Jerry Sandusky was found guilty of 45 counts in June 2012 of raping or fondling boys he met through his youth charity, The Second Mile, which he founded. On Tuesday, October 9, 2012, a Judge sentenced him to 30 to 60 years in prison. The Judge stated that he expected 68 year old Sandusky to die in prison. Sandusky leaves behind tragedy for his victims as well as scandal at Penn State, which resulted in the downfall of Penn State’s legendary football coach Joe Paterno, who was fired from his coaching position. Paterno died of lung cancer approximately three months later. Penn State President Graham Spanier was also fired.
There are still four lawsuits pending against Penn State and more expected. During a news conference held on November 1, 2012, Linda Kelly, Pennsylvania’s attorney general, confirmed that former Penn State President Graham Spanier has been charged with five charges: perjury, obstruction of justice, endangering the welfare of children, criminal conspiracy and failure to report suspected child abuse. Kelly also said that Gary Schultz, the former university vice president, and Tim Curley, the former athletic director would face the same five charges. Gary Schultz and Tim Curly are also awaiting their trials in January 2013 for lying to the grand jury that investigated them.
An investigation commissioned by Penn State and headed by former FBI Director Louis Freeh found that Paterno and other top officials at Penn State had covered up the allegations against Sandusky for more than a decade to avoid negative publicity for the school. Since the scandal broke, Penn State has received a record $60 million penalty by the NCAA, the team has been barred from post season play for four years, the number of scholarships it can award has been reduced and Paterno has been stripped of his standing as the coach with the most college football wins, as a result of what might be called the biggest scandal in college sports history.
Sandusky denies committing any acts against children and claims he is the victim. Plans for appeal are underway as Sandusky claims, among other things, that his defense team was denied sufficient time to prepare for trial after his November 2011 arrest. Lawyers representing the victims expressed their satisfaction with Sandusky’s sentence.
Prosecutors in Pennsylvania take child sexual abuse cases very seriously. Facing sexual abuse charges under Pennsylvania Statutes Sections 3121-3130 means you could be charged with felony rape, involuntary deviate sexual intercourse, sexual assault, institutional sexual assault, aggravated indecent assault, or misdemeanor charges for indecent assault, indecent exposure, sexual intercourse with an animal or conduct relating to sex offenders.
You could face a minimum of 10 years to a maximum of 40 years and fines up to $100,000 for offenses that involve rape and multiple deviate sexual intercourse with minors and also be required to register as a sex offender for life. This could affect your chances of getting a job or finding a place to live. As in the Sandusky case, even if you did not commit a sex abuse crime, you could also be charged for failing to report such crime to law enforcement or face perjury charges for not disclosing information under oath.
Criminal Defense Attorney Assistance
If you are charged with child sex abuse crimes in Pennsylvania, it is imperative that you hire a Pennsylvania criminal defense attorney immediately to represent you. At Imhoff & Associates-Criminal Attorneys , we understand the seriousness of such charges, and we will build a strong and vigorous defense on your behalf. Your Imhoff criminal defense attorney will interview witnesses, review arrest reports and other evidence against you, as well as hire expert witnesses to testify at trial. The Imhoff criminal defense attorney will work hard to get the best outcome of your case.
Murder is a horrible, heinous crime. All agree to that. Prior to this week, 28 states had laws on their books that mandated to sentencing juvenile offenders to life in prison without parole.
The issue is that the justice system views juvenile offenders as too young and tender to appreciate the consequences of these crimes. In other words they cannot fully understand and comprehend their actions and the resulting circumstances that they have made because of their actions. Justice Elena Kagan, who wrote the opinion for the Supreme Court, stated “Children are different” then adult offenders when it comes to crime and punishment. The cases before the court concerned two 14-year-old boys one from Alabama and one from Arkansas.
On Mondy, June 25th, in the Supreme Court’s 5-4 decision (Kagan, Bader-Ginsburg, Breyer, Kennedy & Sotomayor for the Majority and CJ Roberts, Alito, Scalia & Thomas for the Dissent), the court struck down the mandatory life sentence scheme for juvenile offenders. The Majority’s opinion shows that mandatory life sentences for juveniles are cruel and unusual punishment even if it occurred to over 2,000 US citizens (which doesn’t seem unusual) nor does it forbid life terms for youths convicted of homicide. This opinion will not release any one person from prison, or automatically grant anyone a new parole hearing. However, it does create a need to resentence a lot of juvenile offenders.
The Supreme Court followed the reasoning of Mary Barthelme whose work was instrumental in establishing the USA’s first Juvenile Court system in 1899 in Cook County, Illinois (Chicago) and other early advocates for juvenile justice. These proponents of juvenile justice come at crime and punishment for children from the angle of rehabilitation and not punishment. Punishment is still meted out for juvenile offenders; however, the focus is on making the child offender into a productive citizen and not to simply remove them from civilized society. The basic premise is that these offenders are immature and less deserving of the country’s harshest punishment.
The Supreme Court has been moving in this direction since 2005 when they struck down the death penalty for juvenile offenders. Then, two years ago the Supreme Court invalidated laws that sentenced children to life without parole for crimes that were less serious than murder.
In a justice system that deals in mandatory life sentences, the “whys” of a crime’s occurrence are not dealt with by the court, only the “hows” of the crimes are presented to the trial judge or jury. Justice Kagan in a footnote stated that life sentences can still be handed down to the most heinous of the juvenile offenders, however those sentences cannot be mandatory. The justice system must make accommodations for the juvenile offenders to present mitigation for the circumstances surrounding their crimes. That means that they can explain why these crimes occurred and not merely dispute how these crimes occurred. Judges need to consider factors such as juveniles are less culpable, less responsible for their actions and they’re immature compared to adults. Judges also need to consider the context of their homes and the environment in which they grew up.
This reasoning is in agreement with the very first proponents’ view of juvenile offenders and their crimes. Children now have a better chance of receiving a sentence that is rehabilitative in scope and not merely punishment.
For more information on the criminal defense attorneys at Imhoff & Associates, visit http://www.CriminalAttorney.com. The criminal law firm attorneys practice in Juvenile Law as well as all other areas of criminal law. Interested parties may also contact a criminal lawyer at the firm by calling 1-888-726-0574.
Imhoff & Associates Secures Release of Wrongfully Convicted Client Luis Galicia and Dismissal of Child Molestation Case
San Diego (California) – Defense Attorney Shannon Dorvall of the Imhoff & Associates Law Firm, one of the largest multi-jurisdictional criminal defense firms, escorted her client Luis Galicia into the arms of his loving family upon his release after successfully getting her client’s case dismissed by the First District Court of Appeals on November 23, 2011. Luis served four years after a trial court convicted him for sexual molestation of his sister. At the original trial, the state’s doctor testified that she believed that his sister had been forcibly raped, despite the testimony of the doctor for the defense, who stated he disagreed with the state’s evidence. Even though his sister recanted her testimony and said that the charges were not true, the trial jury convicted Luis Galicia, and the sentence handed down was two 15 to life sentences.
The family hired the Imhoff firm to file an appeal on Luis’ behalf. While awaiting the Judge’s response in the appeal case, the family took his sister to two doctors who examined her and disagreed with the state’s doctor, both stating that his sister’s hymen was intact and that she had never had sex. The Imhoff firm also filed a Writ of Habeas Corpus on Luis Galicia’s behalf with the First District Court of Appeals, who agreed to order a hearing, and the Imhoff firm was also successful in obtaining the cooperation of the San Diego District Attorney’s Office to review the new medical evidence. The District Attorney agreed to have the Children’s Hospital also review the trial photos and examine the girl, and they agreed also that she had never had sex. The District Attorney testified at the hearing that the trial evidence was nonsense. The Judge ordered the case dismissed and the release of Mr. Galicia.
The Imhoff firm believes that no family should have to endure the ordeal that the Galicia family has gone through. Unfortunately, innocent people can be accused of all sorts of crimes they have not committed. If a person is arrested or charged with a sex crime, these are serious charges and can ruin a person’s reputation and life as well as destroy their family’s lives. Imhoff & Associates believes in justice and that all persons are innocent until proved otherwise. That is why the Imhoff legal defense team vigorously defends their clients by specializing in the most innovative legal services defense strategies and treats their clients with the utmost dignity and respect. The firm’s outstanding and skilled defense attorneys work diligently and creatively to offer the highest level of service to our clients and uphold the principles and standards upon which this firm was founded by providing service to clients with members of the firm available 24/7.
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