Category Archives: Pittsburgh Murder Attorneys

Taking a Stand: How to Challenge Police Officer Testimony. #CriminalDefenseAttorney

Detectives Testifying at Trial. Frank Walker Law

In most criminal cases, there’s likely to be a time where a police officer takes the stand to present evidence for the prosecution.  How the police officer witness is handled can make or break any case.  Police witnesses offer special challenges on cross examination.  First of all, there are inherent biases to combat with the jury.  The jury looks at the accused as a potential criminal and liar. Meanwhile, police officers are often looked at by jurors with respect and admiration.  Therefore its important to ask police officer questions at trial in a planned and careful matter that takes these biases into account.

The most helpful tool in preparing for the cross examination of a police witness is their report.  The written report of police witnesses will be available in discovery, and can be used to nail down the officer to a single version of events.  The point isn’t to construct an elaborate trap like you may see on tv. Instead, you want to construct a narrative that can illustrate deficits in the officer’s testimony and memory.  This may include drawing out exactly what the officer saw (and by implication, what they didn’t see), the lighting and weather conditions, and testing their memory of events. Police officers handle hundreds of cases every year, and mistakes will happen.  And if they’re mistaken about some things, its possible for the jury to conclude they are mistaken about others.  It is also important to challenge conclusions made by officers that are not supported by physical evidence.

Sometimes the questions you don’t ask are just as important.  A well constructed cross examination leads the jury to a conclusion that they draw themselves.  Trying to force an officer to admit that they made a mistake that is obviously damaging to their case will often just give them the opportunity to explain it away, and will also give them the opportunity to heap on more damaging information about the defendant. You don’t want to open that door if the prosecution hasn’t already.

Cross examination of a police officer is both an art and a science that is honed over years of trial experience.  That’s why you want Attorney Frank Walker to be the one asking the right questions on your behalf. Attorney Walker has years of trial experience and he isn’t afraid to take a tough case to trial. Don’t just plead guilty, lawyer up and fight the case!  Call 412-532-6805 to reach his office in Pittsburgh or call (304) 712-2089 for the  office in Morgantown. Call now!

About Frank Walker Law

Attorney Frank Walker of Frank Walker Law is a National Top 100 Criminal Defense Lawyer, and Personal Injury Attorney who has been recognized as a Super Lawyer, Best Attorneys in America and a Top AVVO Rated attorney, with offices in Pittsburgh Pennsylvania and Morgantown West Virginia.

If you or someone you love are facing criminal charges or seriously injured in an accident, contact Attorney Frank Walker immediately at 412-532-6805, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week for aggressive and experienced Criminal Defense or Representation in a Civil Case.

 

It Wasn’t Me: Issues in Cases of Mistaken Identity. #CriminalDefenseAttorney

Charged with a Crime based on Mistaken Identity? Contact Frank Walker Law

Hearing an eyewitness on the stand point to the defendant and say “he’s the one who did it, that guy right there” is very convincing evidence to jurors. However, in study after study, eyewitness testimony has been shown to be incredibly unreliable.  Studies show that an eyewitness’s recall of the crime can be affected by anxiety or stress, reconstructive memory, their focus on the perpetrator’s weapon, flawed lineups, and leading questions asked by the police and prosecutors.

Most crime when it happens, is unexpected and happens in the blink of an eye.  There are studies for and against the idea that the stress of a situation keeps people from being able to remember the details of that situation.  In crimes done with a weapon, there is strong evidence to show that victims focus on the weapon and are able to describe it in great detail, but are often unable to remember key attributes of the person holding the gun including things such as their height, race and hair color.

A huge issue in cases of mistaken identity are the use of police lineups and photo-arrays to identify potential culprits in various cases like Murder, Rape or Kidnapping.   There is considerable case law on how to apply lineups or display photo-arrays in a way that passes constitutional muster.  Lineups and photo-arrays must be administered in an unbiased way where the police aren’t being suggestive of who they believe the culprit to be. Also, when using photo-arrays, the photos must be chosen and displayed in a way that the suspect does not unfairly stand out from the witnesses initial description. A lineup or photo-array of all individuals of a difference race than the description provided except for the suspect would be outrageously suggestive. If lineups and photo-arrays aren’t administered properly, a good lawyer can get that evidence suppressed and excluded from being used as evidence against you.

That’s where Attorney Frank Walker can help. He has years of experience in challenging eyewitness testimony and successfully getting evidence suppressed and cases based on mistaken identity thrown out.  If you have a case where identity is at issue in Pittsburgh, PA or Morgantown, WV  Attorney Walker is the advocate you need.  Call 412-532-6805 to reach the Pittsburgh office or (304) 712-2089 for our office in Morgantown, West Virginia. Call now!

About Frank Walker Law

Attorney Frank Walker of Frank Walker Law is a National Top 100 Criminal Defense Lawyer, and Personal Injury Attorney who has been recognized as a Super Lawyer, Best Attorneys in America and a Top AVVO Rated attorney, with offices in Pittsburgh Pennsylvania and Morgantown West Virginia.

If you or someone you love are facing criminal charges or seriously injured in an accident, contact Attorney Frank Walker immediately at 412-532-6805, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week for aggressive and experienced Criminal Defense or Representation in a Civil Case.

#Pittsburgh Criminal Attorneys Speak on #Ferguson, #MikeBrown and #Witness Safety on #LynnHayesFreelandShow with @KDKA

Pittsburgh Criminal Defense Attorney Frank Walker of Frank Walker Law Joins fellow Pittsburgh CFrank Walker Law Talk show Pittsburgh Lawyerriminal Lawyer Todd Hollis as guests on the KDKA Lynn Hayes Freeland show this Saturday morning, August 30, 2014 at 6:30am Est and Sunday Morning, August 31 2014 at 6:00am EST.

Attorneys Hollis and Walker will discuss in detail, the Mike Brown incident in Ferguson, Missouri and the investigation and the potential grand jury indictment of the officer involved. Also, the Criminal Defense Attorneys will discuss the rash of recent deaths of witnesses involved in #Pittsburgh criminal cases. Finally, the attorneys will reveal the one thing every #CriminalDefenseAttorney should tell their clients.

Attorney ToddHollis

You do not want to miss this show! Tune in early Saturday or Sunday morning or set your DVR to KDKA TV to catch this lively discussion on the Lynn Hayes Freeland Show.

Attorney Frank Walker of Frank Walker Law is a National Top 100 Criminal Defense Lawyer and Personal Injury Attorney with offices in Pittsburgh Pennsylvania and Morgantown West Virginia. Attorney Walker is also a member of the National College for DUI Defense and qualified as a Pennsylvania Death Penalty Defense Attorney.

If you or someone you love are facing criminal charges or seriously injured in an accident in WV or PA, contact Attorney Frank Walker immediately at 412-315-744124 hours a day, 7 days a week for aggressive and experienced Criminal Defense or Representation in a Civil Case.

 

 

#FrankWalkerLaw – #Pittsburgh Attorney Obtains Death Penalty Certification

Frank Walker Law - Death Penalty Certified

Pittsburgh Attorney Frank Walker of Frank Walker Law is pleased to announce his recent certification to accept Capital Cases pursuant to Rule 801 of the Pennsylvania Rules of Criminal Procedure.

When reached at his Pittsburgh Office, Attorney Walker commented on the recent certification, “I am honored to join this unique and accomplished group of Attorneys currently fighting the Death Penalty.  I have always maintained that Murder cases are already complex in nature, where clients are facing Life without the possibility of Parole, but Death is Different because it is final. Therefore, I sought the certification to assist with the clientele in need of an aggressive and experienced Death Penalty Defense Attorney.”

According to the Pennsylvania Rules, Death Penalty qualified attorneys must complete and maintain a required amount of Continuing Education to qualify for the certification. Once obtained, Attorneys can maintain their certification by continuing to complete the requisite hours in the specific area of Capital Case Litigation.


Attorney Frank Walker of Frank Walker Law
 is a National Top 100 Criminal Defense Lawyer and Personal Injury Attorney with offices in Pittsburgh Pennsylvania and Morgantown West Virginia. Attorney Walker is also a member of the National College for DUI Defense and qualified as a Pennsylvania Death Penalty Defense Attorney.

If you or someone you love are facing criminal charges or seriously injured in an accident in WV or PA, contact Attorney Frank Walker immediately at 412-315-744124 hours a day, 7 days a week for aggressive and experienced Criminal Defense or Representation in a Civil Case.

#Pittsburgh Police Make Arrest in Northview Heights Shooting

Police arrested a man in connection with a shooting in Northview Heights over the past weeks

Police arrested the man earlier this week on suspicion of attempted murder, for his part in an altercation and shooting. The 35 year-old suspect was allegedly found unconscious at about 11:30 pm on Saturday, lying on the ground with a gunshot wound to the leg and bleeding from his mouth. According to the criminal complaint, the suspect and three other men were involved in a fight which was broken up by a security guard.

The suspect then allegedly pulled out a gun and a struggle ensued. Police believe that both the suspect and the victim were shot during the struggle, and the suspect may have accidentally shot himself in the leg. The victim was also found on the scène with a gunshot wound to the groin.

The suspect is being charged with various counts, including attempted murder, forgery, and possession with intent to deliver. The latter charges are as a result of counterfeit money and heroin which were found on the suspect during his arrest.

Attorney Frank Walker of Frank Walker Law is a National Top 100 Criminal Defense Lawyer and Personal Injury Attorney with offices in Pittsburgh Pennsylvania and Morgantown West Virginia.

Carnegie Man to Serve 7 to 14 Years for Third Degree Murder of Step-Father

A Pittsburgh area man pled guilty to killing his stepfather last year, in an incident which saw the man shoot his stepfather following a fight.

The 20 year-old Carnegie man will spend 7 to 14 years behind bars as a result of a plea agreement in which he pled guilty to third-degree murder. The incident in question reportedly began when the suspect’s mother was involved in a domestic dispute on July 27, and asked her son to come over to change the locks. The suspect complied, but when his stepfather arrived at the home and found he had been locked out, he allegedly entered through an unsecured window.

Upon entering the home the stepfather realized that a television, which had been placed in a location on the first floor, was gone – not knowing that it had been taken upstairs. He called the suspect, who then went to the home to check what his mother. The two engaged in a heated argument which became physical, but the fight was broken up. Suddenly the suspect pulled a gun from his waistband and fired, hitting the victim in the chest and killing him.

At the time of this writing, no Appeal had been filed.

Attorney Frank Walker of Frank Walker Law is a National Top 100 Criminal Defense Lawyer and Personal Injury Attorney with offices in Pittsburgh Pennsylvania and Morgantown West Virginia.

If you or someone you love are facing criminal charges or seriously injured in an accident, contact Attorney Frank Walker immediately at 412-315-744124 hours a day, 7 days a week for aggressive and experienced Criminal Defense or Representation in a Civil Case.

Westmoreland Man Accused of Killing His Girlfriend

A Westmoreland man has been arrested and accused of being responsible for his girlfriend’s death.

The body of the 52 year-old victim was found in a Laurel Mountain home on a Friday at about 10:00 PM. Family members had asked police to check or her because they had not heard from her for several days. Upon entering the home, the responding officer noticed blood in the kitchen and found the victim’s body near a rear door. Apparently officers also found several packages of Band-Aids in the bathroom.

Police say that a friend of the suspect informed them that he had a large cut on his hand the day after the alleged murder, and that the suspect claimed that he suffered the gash in an incident involving a cat. When police located the suspect he apparently had injuries to both hands. According to an autopsy report the victim died from blunt force trauma to the head.

The accused was detained at the Westmoreland County Jail pending a Preliminary Hearing for charges of Homicide.

Attorney Frank Walker of Frank Walker Law is a National Top 100 Criminal Defense Lawyer and Personal Injury Attorney with offices in Pittsburgh Pennsylvania and Morgantown West Virginia.

If you or someone you love are facing criminal charges or seriously injured in an accident, contact Attorney Frank Walker immediately at 412-315-744124 hours a day, 7 days a week for aggressive and experienced Criminal Defense or Representation in a Civil Case.