Private criminal complaint in Pennsylvania (PA)

UPDATED: Jun 12, 2009

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Private criminal complaint in Pennsylvania (PA)

I had an altercation with an acquaintance over the weekend. He swung first, but I fought back. I want to file a private criminal complaint against him, but my other friend (a lawyer) told me that if he files one against me, we could both be facing misdemeanor charges and could be both found guilty and that it is possible for both of us to face fines (most likely), have huge attorney bills, and possible (but not likely) jail time. Is this true?

Asked on June 12, 2009 under Criminal Law, Pennsylvania


MD, Member, California Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 13 years ago | Contributor

Yup.  Why? Because you hit him.  Then the trial could show if you had a viable defense sufficient to find you not guilty or sufficient to have the prosecutor drop charges.

Why even get involved in that.  Did any one of you call the police when it occurred?

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