Scapegoats in the Philadelphia Building Collapse?

“I never intentionally hurt anyone in my life.”

The Philadelphia Inquirer reported that comment as coming from the lips of Richard C. Basciano, the real estate mogul and one-time “porn king” of Times Square. Of course, this man’s company hired a discount demolition crew to tear down one of his decrepit buildings in downtown Philadelphia. We all know what happened next – a crane operator of the demo crew who was allegedly so high, he couldn’t perform his job duties, pulled a support beam from the structure and sent the entire four-story building tumbling down on a Salvation Army thrift store. Six people died. Multiple others sustained serious injuries.

Intent is a funny thing when it comes to criminal matters. The aim to do harm often weighs heavily in determining charges and their severity, and it can play an important role in a jury’s determination of guilt. However, in some cases, intent matters very little, because there was already criminal activity ongoing when death occurred. Perpetrators may not have intended for someone to die, but it happened anyway, and that incident can lead to a host of serious, death penalty worthy claims. Criminal defense lawyers usually get a ton of phone calls when these situations occur.

Decorative Scales Of Justice In The Courtroom

Who’s Responsible for these Deaths?

Authorities have already charged the excavator operator, 43-year-old Sean Benschop, with the deaths of those six people who died in the building collapse. He surrendered to police last week and has invoked his right to remain silent. He has a lengthy criminal history, including two prison stints on drug-related charges during the ‘90s.

Benschop is the man allegedly responsible in the most direct manner for these deaths, but is he the only one to blame? Laying the entire incident at this man’s feet seems like a shortsighted stab at closure or swift justice for the community. The move does not bring closure; it brings more questions than answers. How can multi-millionaire decide to skimp on the safety of those in the community that reports indicate he had such an appreciation for? How difficult would it have been to splurge on the extra $25 to run, at the very least, a background check on the company hired to do the intricate work?

Scapegoats Don’t Heal Communities

A vigorous legal defense is necessary for Benschop to ensure he does not receive the lion’s share of rage delivered by a city that is justifiably in mourning. Every accused person has the presumption of innocence and this investigation is far from over. Let’s see how the evidence plays out in this manner, and who authorities determine may share in the culpability of this tragedy.

If you, or someone in your family, is facing criminal charges, you need aggressive legal representation to ensure you don’t lose your good name as well as your freedom. Our firm features former prosecutors and a former Senior Deputy District Attorney. We know the law, and how to attack criminal matters to achieve the best possible outcomes for our clients. If you’re in trouble, call us today for an immediate consultation with member of our legal team.

HOW WE CAN HELP

DUI DEFENSE

icon car - Criminal Defense
DUI INFORMATION CENTER

Learn what to do if you have been stopped for DUI/DWI.

icon car - Criminal Defense
ARD IN PENNSYLVANIA

If this is your first DUI offense, you may be eligible for ARD.

RESULTS

NO JAIL TIME

Commonwealth v. "H" (DUI case)

Client was charged with three separate DUI cases calling for mandatory minimum imprisonment of 90 days on each case. Client was advised to seek immediate intensive alcohol counseling. Client was sentenced to 1 year of house arrest after serving 3 days in the county prison.

CASE DISMISSED

Commonwealth v. "C" (Felony drug/Firearms case)

Client was charged with felony Delivery of drugs and illegal gun possession and was facing a mandatory 3-6 year prison sentence in the State prison system. Client was sentenced to one year of house arrest.

CASE DISMISSED

Commonwealth v. "S"

Client was charged with simple assault, domestic. After a hearing where evidence and testimony was presented, the entire case was dismissed by Judge Leonard Brown.

CASE DISMISSED

State of New Jersey v. "H"

Charges for young man charged with second degree aggravated assault were downgraded to third degree and he was accepted into the County Pretrial Intervention program with charges to be dismissed and record expunged after one year of misconduct free behavior.

OUR CRIMINAL DEFENSE TEAM INCLUDES TWO FORMER DISTRICT ATTORNEYS

We have decades of experience dealing with local police departments, prosecutors, and judges throughout southeastern Pennsylvania and New Jersey.

Anyone facing charges involving a criminal offense can expect to experience a heightened degree of emotional turmoil, for themselves, as well as their family members. Our team of highly qualified criminal law attorneys and expert legal support staff are committed to providing each of our client’s with the compassion and understanding they deserve, as well as an aggressive plan for representation at an affordable price.

As former prosecutors, we have a balanced and in-depth understanding of the criminal justice system and how the prosecution prepares cases. In addition, we have long-standing experience dealing with local police departments, prosecutors and judges throughout southeastern Pennsylvania and New Jersey.

At Young, Marr and Associates, when we say “experience matters,” we mean it. Our lawyers, which include two former prosecutors and a former senior deputy district attorney bring more than three decades of criminal law experience, handling more than 10,000 criminal cases. It is precisely that experience that allows us to achieve outstanding results for our clients facing DUI, traffic, felony and misdemeanor charges in state, federal and juvenile courts.