Protecting Your Rights and Making Sure Your Story is Heard

If you’ve been accused of a criminal offense, you are probably worried. Criminal charges can affect your reputation, your employment, and even your freedom.

What Will Happen to Me?

The Pennsylvania justice system can be confusing. There are two main types of criminal offenses in Pennsylvania: misdemeanors and felonies. Each type of offense is divided into basic categories or degrees.

Misdemeanor crimes are generally less serious than felonies, but a misdemeanor should not be dismissed as a minor offense. A person convicted of a misdemeanor will have a criminal record and may face both prison time and monetary fines.

  • First-degree misdemeanor: Up to five years' imprisonment and no more than $10,000 in fines
  • Second-degree misdemeanor: Up to two years' imprisonment and no more than $5,000 in fines
  • Third-degree misdemeanor: Up to one year imprisonment and no more than $2,500 in fines

Felonies are more serious crimes. A felony will be shown on your criminal record for life and may have a serious impact on your future, including your right to bear arms and your ability to work in certain career fields.

There are three degrees of felonies in Pennsylvania, but some felonies, such as murder, are not categorized and are not restricted by maximum sentences. Other crimes, like rape, carry mandatory minimum sentences.

  • First-degree felony: Up to 20 years' imprisonment and no more than $25,000 in fines
  • Second-degree felony: Up to 10 years' imprisonment and no more than $25,000 in fines
  • Third-degree felony: Up to 7 years’ imprisonment and no more than $15,000 in fines

What happens after your arrest will depend on three factors: The severity of the charges, the evidence against you, and the attorney you choose.

Our Criminal Defense Attorneys

Criminal lawyer
Peter Amuso


Mr. Amuso received his J.D. from Harvard Law School and attended the U.S. Army Judge Advocate General’s School. He now concentrates his practice on criminal defense and municipal law.

On Your Side

Being accused of a crime does not mean you are automatically guilty and it doesn’t mean that you don’t have rights. Rudolph Clarke, LLC represents individuals facing misdemeanor or felony charges in the Philadelphia region. Our defense attorneys will work with you to create a plan of action for your specific case and your specific needs. We will listen to your story, explain the charges, and discuss your best options. We will let you know exactly what you can expect and will keep you informed as your case progresses. We’ll help you prepare for court and aggressively fight for the best possible outcome.

Juvenile Crimes

If your child is arrested, it can be terrifying. Your child needs expert legal help. A record of juvenile delinquency can affect your child’s chances of holding a job or attending college.

Our attorneys will work with your family to protect your child’s privacy and minimize the impact on his future. Whenever possible, we try to find alternative solutions such as community service or restitution. Don’t let a childhood mistake prevent your child from becoming a responsible citizen. Call Rudolph Clarke, LLC at (215) 633-1890 to learn more.

When Should I Call?

The best time to call is now. Calling as soon as possible after your arrest will give your attorney time to investigate the charges against you and plan for your defense. Waiting to consult with an experienced criminal defense attorney may harm to your case as evidence supporting your story may be lost or destroyed. If you have been charged with a criminal offense, don’t waste any more time. Call Rudolph Clarke, LLC today at (215) 633-1890.