Legal Question in Criminal Law in Pennsylvania

i have been under investigation for prescription forgery. the detectives told me they will call next week to advise me of the day to turn myself in and be arraigned. i have special circumstances though. I am a mentally ill patient diagnosed with bipolar II and borderline traits. I attempted suicide by hanging in Jan of this year and subsequently had brain surgery twice in february to fix a subdural hematoma from the "fall" when the rope broke. I have been undergoing therepy (physical, memory, cognative, etc) since my release from the hospital. My short term memory and balance are the most compromised at this point. I also, due to outside stressors attempted suicide again a few weeks ago by overdosing. I was found unresponsive and hospitalized and then I 201'd myself to what would be my 6th mental facility since '08. i sincerely do not remember most of the details of the crimes I will be charged with, I am not saying that as an excuse, just as an explanation. I need to know how and when is the appropriate time to ask for a court appointed attorney rather than a P.D. and is it possible, if I'm unable to bail out, be remanded to a psychiatric facility so that my psych treatments continue and I don't digress. Can I introduce the "fitness to plead" at the arraignment and also plead the fifth until attorney represented? Any help would be greatly appreciated, Today is July 3rd and all of this should be going down this coming week. Please help.

Asked on 7/03/11, 3:35 pm

1 Answer from Attorneys


i am truly sorry for your plight and wish I could do more than advise you.

Call the Court House and ask for the Public Defenders Office (Chester County I assume()

610-344-6000--Explain to the person answering and they will put you in touch with a PD.

Ask about a court appointed attorney, and they will steer you.

I have found the District Attorney's Office to be very humane in Chester County and I do not believe they will simply ignore your situation i it is presented to them competently by an attorney. Don' t ask THEM for advice, they cannot give it to you.

You may have to go through the arrest procedure but that should not be all that horrendous.

If you have family members to help you financially, then try to secure the services of an attorney. Call me if you wish 215-732-4000

Good luck to you. You will be in my prayers.


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Answered on 7/04/11, 2:36 pm

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