In the time of the coronavirus, is coughing or spitting on someone simple assault?

There’s been reports in recent days like this one—State police cite 2 people in Westmoreland County for ‘purposely coughing’ on workers—which raise the question of whether coughing or spitting on someone is enough to rise to the level of simple assault.  Under normal circumstances, the answer may generally be no, but we’re not living in normal circumstances, and the answer … Read More

The Statute of Limitations for Criminal Offenses

Most have heard of the term “statute of limitations.”  And probably when most people think of the term they jokingly associate it with the thought of how much time they must pass before being cleared of responsibility for their actions. That’s the general concept of the statute of limitations: it’s a legal timer —a running clock if you will—that sets … Read More

License Suspension for Drug Convictions: Is that really a “conviction”?

Pennsylvania’s Vehicle Code mandates a driver’s license suspension of “any person . . . convict[ed] of any offense involving the possession, sale, delivery, offering for sale, holding for sale or giving away of any controlled substance under the laws of the United States, this Commonwealth or any other state.”  75 Pa.C.S. § 1532(c). This is a surprise to many facing … Read More