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Meet Our Attorneys
Lee Ciccarelli

Lee Ciccarelli

Lee Ciccarelli is the founder and managing partner of Ciccarelli Law Offices with over two decades experience as a practicing attorney.

Joshua Tebay

Joshua Tebay

Joshua Tebay is an experienced attorney and former prosecutor licensed to practice in both Pennsylvania and New Jersey.

Michael E. Houghton

Michael E. Houghton

Michael E. Houghton brings both passion and enthusiasm to criminal defense through his extensive knowledge and experience.

Timothy Kraeer

Timothy Kraeer

Timothy Kraeer is a highly experienced traffic attorney who handles related criminal and civil matters across the state.

Ann DelCollo

Ann DelCollo

Since 1992, Ann has been advocating for her clients both in and out of tough courtrooms of Philadelphia, which has cultivated her craft.

David Strenfel

David Strenfel

David Strenfel is a highly experienced attorney who focuses on trial advocacy, constitutional law, and criminal defense.

Jonathon Luff

Jonathon Luff

Jonathon Luff has successfully represented countless clients and gain freedom for many wrongfully accused individuals.

Office Locations
Our Locations
Primary Location
A
304 North High Street West Chester, PA 19380
Secondary Locations

These locations are available by appointment only

B
1515 Market St., #200 Philadelphia, PA 19102
C
135 East State St. Kennett Square, PA 19380
D
600 West Germantown Pike Plymouth Meeting, PA 19462
E
1489 Baltimore Pike Ste 221 Springfield, PA 19064
G
101 Lindenwood Dr, Ste 225 Malvern, PA 19355
H
150 N. Radnor Chester Rd Ste. F200, Radnor, PA 19087
I
313 West Liberty St., Ste 341 Lancaster, PA 17603
Reasonable Fees

Our firm provides excellent services at reasonable fees and accepts a variety of payment methods, including most major credit card providers.

We accept payment from most major credit card providers, including Via, MasterCard, American Express, and Discover
Superb Avvo Rating

Lee Ciccarelli has received a 10.0 (Superb) rating on Avvo, the highest possible rating for attorneys on the site. This rating is given based on client reviews, peer endorsements, and professional experience and credentials.

Avvo Top Attorney Criminal Defense

Institutional Sexual Assault

State and county employees in the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania are held to a higher standard than their counterparts in the private sector. The agents or employees of certain institutions can face extremely serious criminal charges for engaging in sexual intercourse or indecent contact with the people they are responsible for dealing with.

Convictions in these types of cases have the potential to cause damage that extends far beyond just a fine and prison sentence. People can suffer irreparable damage to their careers and personal lives, as being convicted of this type of sexual assault may require an alleged offender to register as a sex offender for several years—possibly even the remainder of their lives.

Institutional Sexual Assault Lawyer in West Chester, PA

Have you been charged with or do you believe that you are being investigated for allegedly engaging in sexual intercourse or indecent contact with a student, inmate, or other resident in West Chester, PA? It is in your best interest to make sure that you have legal counsel before you make any type of statement to police or investigators.

The sex offense defense attorneys in Chester County, PA, at Ciccarelli Law Offices work as a team to defends clients throughout Southeastern Pennsylvania against these charges. Our firm serves communities in Delaware County, Montgomery County, Lancaster County, and Philadelphia County as well as Chester County. Call (610) 719-3200 right now to have us review your case during a free, confidential consultation.


Pennsylvania Institutional Sexual Assault Overview


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Institutional Sexual Assault Charges in Chester County, PA

Employees of several state institutions can be charged with this crime. Both the type of institution and the age of the alleged victim can determine the specific nature of the charge.

There are four different types of this crime. Each one of the following is classified as a third-degree felony:

  • Institutional Sexual Assault — Under 18 Pa.C.S. § 3124.2(a), a person who is an employee or agent of the Department of Corrections or a county correctional authority, youth development center, youth forestry camp, State or county juvenile detention facility, other licensed residential facility serving children and youth, or mental health or mental retardation facility or institution can be charged with this offense if he or she engages in sexual intercourse, deviate sexual intercourse or indecent contact with an inmate, detainee, patient, or resident.
  • Institutional Sexual Assault of a Minor — Under 18 Pa.C.S. § 3124.2(a.1), this statute applies to employees or agents of the same institutions listed above but the inmate, detainee, patient, or resident is under 18 years of age.
  • Institutional Sexual Assault at a School — Under 18 Pa.C.S. § 3124.2(a.2), a person who is a volunteer, an employee of a school, or has direct contact with a student at a school can be charged with this offense if he or she engages in sexual intercourse, deviate sexual intercourse, or indecent contact with a student of the school.
  • Institutional Sexual Assault – Child Care — Under 18 Pa.C.S. § 3124.2(a.3), a person who is a volunteer or an employee of a center for children can be charged with this offense if he or she engages in sexual intercourse, deviate sexual intercourse, or indecent contact with a child who is receiving services at the center.

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Institutional Sexual Assault Penalties in Pennsylvania

Because all four of the criminal offenses listed above are classified as third-degree felonies, a conviction for any one of those crimes can result in a fine of up to $10,000 and maximum incarceration sentence of seven years. In addition to those possible sentences, an alleged offender could also be required to register as a sex offender.

Under Megan’s Law, the classification of sex offender will depend on the specific crime that alleged offender has been convicted for. There are three tiers of sex offenders:

  • Tier I Offenders — People convicted of Institutional Sexual Assault under 18 Pa.C.S. § 3124.2(a) are required to register annually for 15 years;
  • Tier II Offenders — People convicted of Institutional Sexual Assault at a School under 18 Pa.C.S. § 3124.2(a.2) or Institutional Sexual Assault – Child Care 18 Pa.C.S. § 3124.2(a.3) are required to register every six months for 25 years; and
  • Tier III Offenders — People convicted of Institutional Sexual Assault of a Minor under 18 Pa.C.S. § 3124.2(a.1) are required to register every three months for life.

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Defenses Against Institutional Sexual Assault Charges

Many sex crimes have a tendency to devolve into “he said/she said” scenarios. In these types of cases, judges and juries can often be inclined to err on the side of caution and side more with the alleged victim.

For this reason, it is critical for any person accused of institutional sexual intercourse, deviate sexual intercourse, or indecent contact to immediately hire a lawyer. Your attorney can fully investigate your case and develop the strongest possible defense against the charges you face.

Some common defenses in these cases may include, but are not limited to:

  • Alibi — There is evidence that the alleged offender was in another location at the time of the alleged crime, making his or her guilt a physical impossibility.
  • Duress — The alleged offender engaged in the conduct charged because he or she was coerced to do so by the use of, or a threat to use, unlawful force against his or her person or the person of another, which a person of reasonable firmness in his situation would have been unable to resist.
  • False Accusations — Alleged victims sometimes concoct stories for a variety of reasons, including possible financial extortion, personal revenge, or as a way of attempting to cover up otherwise consensual sex.
  • Illegal Search and Seizure — In these types of cases, electronic communications such as emails or text messages (including so-called “sexting” and photos sent through cell phones) may be collected as forensic evidence, but such evidence may be suppressed if law enforcement obtained it illegally. 
  • Tainted Evidence — In cases involving particularly young children, authorities or other adults may induce false confessions through biased or suggestive questioning.

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Pennsylvania Resources for Institutional Sexual Assault

The Crime Victims' Center of Chester County, Inc. (CVC) — This private, community-based, nonprofit 501(c)(3) comprehensive victim services agency is the designated provider of services to sexual violence victims for Chester County. On this website, you can learn more about recent CVC news items, upcoming events, services, and submit a volunteer application. There is also a “Survivors’ Space” that contains personal stories as well as other resources for victims.

135-137 West Market Street
West Chester, PA 19382
(610) 692-1926

Pennsylvania Office of Victim Advocate (OVA) — Created in 1995 as part of then-Governor Tom Ridge’s Special Session on Crime, the OVA provides victims of sex crimes with notifications, support, and advocacy services. It notifies victims when offenders are eligible for release from prison or parole, helps victims craft oral or written impact statements to be given to decision-making boards, and notifies victims of final decisions. On this website, you can learn more about crime victims’ rights, OVA services, and the various programs offered by the OVA.


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Find a Lawyer for Institutional Sexual Assault Issues in West Chester

If you are an employee at a state or county institution in Pennsylvania who has been accused of engaging in sexual intercourse, deviate sexual intercourse, or indecent contact with one of the residents of the institute, you should not delay in seeking legal representation. Even if you are completely innocent, you should avoid saying anything to authorities without having your own attorney present.

Ciccarelli Law Offices aggressively clients from all over Southeastern Pennsylvania in these types of cases. Our firm has offices in West Chester, Plymouth Square, King of Prussia, Malvern, Kennett Square, Radnor, Lancaster, and Philadelphia.

Our lawyers will work as a team to help you achieve the most favorable possible outcome to your case. You can have our Chester County sex offense attorneys provide a thorough evaluation of your case when you call (610) 719-3200 today to schedule a free initial consultation.

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