Constitutional Rights

Failure To Mirandize In State College Drug Possession Case

A Centre County judge recently issued an opinion in a State College misdemeanor drug possession case in which the criminal defense lawyer sought suppression of statements made by the defendant because the officer did not advise the defendant of her Miranda warnings.  The judge’s decision granted the suppression of some statements, but the judge also felt… view more

“Flipping the Bird” Can Get You into Trouble

By Jason Dunkle on G+ Two recent cases put the spotlight on giving a person “the bird”, or “flipping them off”, and whether such a gesture is protected by the First Amendment to the U.S. Constitution.  In one case, a police officer was the target, but, in the other, the person had the audacity to… view more

Is “Flipping the Bird” Legal in Pennsylvania?

By Jason Dunkle on G+ While many people “flip off” or give others the bird in public, I often wondered if it was actually legal. Oddly, while I have been a criminal defense lawyer since 2004, I didn’t actually know the answer to that question until recently. Just because many people do it doesn’t mean… view more

Pennsylvania’s Rejection of Automobile Exception to Warrant Requirement Questioned

By Jason Dunkle on G+ I recently spent a Thursday evening watching taped oral arguments from lawyers before the Pennsylvania Supreme Court on the Pennsylvania Cable Network. In the case of Commonwealth v. Gary, the Court is considering whether or not it should adopt the Federal standard regarding the search of automobiles, generally referred to… view more