Criminal Lawyer Update: Pennsylvania Supreme Court Strikes Down Mandatory Minimum Sentence in Sex Case

On June 20, 2016, the Pennsylvania Supreme Court, in Pennsylvania v. Wolfe, with the opinion authored by Chief Justice Saylor, struck down the mandatory minimum sentencing provisions of 42 Pa.C.S. § 9718, which mandated for mandatory minimums for certain offenses...

Criminal Lawyer Update: Pennsylvania Superior Court Rules Most Mandatory Minimum Sentencing Statutes Unconstitutional in Commonwealth v. Newman, 2014 Pa. Super. 178 (Aug. 20, 2014)

In Commonwealth v. Newman, the Pennsylvania Superior Court, ruling unanimously, en banc, holds most mandatory minimums in Pennsylvania unconstitutional as a result of Alleyene v. United States.  Defendants in criminal court will no longer have to endure...

Philadelphia Criminal Lawyer Update: PA Supreme Court Reigns in Application of Mandatory Minimum Sentences for Drug Dealing with a Firearm

The case is Commonwealth v. Hanson, ___ A.3d ___ (2013), 2013 WL 6831854 (Pa. Supreme Ct., Dec. 27, 2013).  The opinion is written by Justice Saylor.   And, the application of a gun plus drug dealing mandatory minimum is overruled, because a defendant...

United States Supreme Court Rules that Facts Triggering Mandatory-Minimum Sentences Are Elements of a Criminal Offense in Alleyne v. United States

The following story was originally published in the July 2013 edition of Upon Further Review, a publication of the Philadelphia Bar Association. Re-printed here with permission of the Philadelphia Bar Association.  The original work can be viewed at...

Mandatory-Minimum Sentence for Drug Offense Committed with Firearm Affirmed by Superior Court Where Gun Found in Basement of Apartment Building

In Commonwealth v. Hawkins, ___ A.3d ___ (2012), 2012 Pa. Super. 85 (Apr. 12, 2012), the Superior Court of Pennsylvania affirmed a mandatory-minimum sentence of five years imprisonment for certain drug offenses committed with a firearm under 42 Pa.C.S. Sec....