Case Results

The below select case results include not-guilty verdicts, dismissed charges and negotiated pleas attained for prior clients. While we cannot predict the future result of your case, and not all of our cases have had desirable outcomes, we can say with confidence that we diligently prepare each and every one of our cases and put forth a personal level of commitment from start to finish.

The clients involved in the following cases have consented to Tom’s sharing factual summaries of their cases.

After Extensive Pre-Trial Investigation and Depositions, Prosecuting Attorney’s Office Dismisses Sexual Abuse Charges

State: Missouri
Court: St. Louis County
Case Name: State v. T. R.
Lead Counsel: Thomas A. Pavlinic
Co-counsel: Joseph M. Hogan
Date: August 2018

Result: All Charges Dismissed

T. R. (our client) and B. G.( his girlfriend) had an on-again, off-again romantic relationship. B. G. lived across the street from G. (the minor complainant) and her mother. G. was an animal lover and often came to B.G.’s house to play with the cat.

According to the police report, G. said that she was at her home on Sunday, March 8, 2015, when B. G. asked her to come out and help her to look for her dog. G. then related that our client and B. G. initially took her upstairs and both had sexual interaction with her. When this incident was reported to the initial investigating officer on March 9, 2015, the complainant clearly and unambiguously stated that the date of the alleged offense was Sunday, March 8, 2015.


Military Specifications Against Army Officer Dismissed Due to Statute of Limitations

Military Counsel: MAJ Kevin M. Adams
Civilian Counsel: Thomas A. Pavlinic
Date: March 23, 2018

Result: All Specifications Dismissed

In 2017 a high-ranking, retired Army officer was accused with 6 specifications of having sexually abused his daughter between 1983 and 1989. The complainant did not make a report to the military until 32 years later in January 2015, when she was 44 years old.

During the course of the investigation, the discovery which was provided by the government showed multiple, major contradictions in the complainant’s statements.


Client Facing Sexual Abuse Allegations in Two States Found Not-Guilty by Jury

State: Georgia
Court: Cobb County Superior Court
Case Name: State v. C.W.
Lead Attorney: Tom Pavlinic
Co-counsel: Corinne Mull
Judge: C. LaTain
Date: May 15, 2017

Result: Jury Verdict – Not Guilty on All Counts

Our client was charged in Cobb County Georgia in a 3-count indictment with the following offenses: Child Molestation as a result of allegedly touching a child’s vagina and breasts (Counts 1 and 2, respectively) and Cruelty to Children in the First Degree based upon the alleged touching causing extreme mental pain (Count 3).

While visiting her grandmother and our client (Client) in August 2015, the 11-year old complainant reported to her grandmother that Client made her feel uncomfortable when he gave her a back rub. Client had known the complainant since 2009, when he and the grandmother began their relationship. Evidence at trial established that Client had given the complainant backrubs for many years, and the grandmother described her granddaughter as a “backrub freak.”

When the grandmother returned the complainant to her parents in North Carolina, new allegations surfaced. Now the complainant – for the very first time – alleged that Client had touched her vaginal area during a vacation in Myrtle Beach, South Carolina a year earlier in the summer of 2014.

The parents took the complainant to a therapist who reported the allegations to law enforcement. As part of the investigation, the complainant and her grandmother gave video interviews that were provided to the defense in discovery. Client was first arrested at his home in North Carolina and extradited to Georgia and then arrested in Georgia and extradited to South Carolina.

Jury selection began on May 9, 2017, and testimony started the following day. The State called 7 witnesses in the following order: mother, father, complainant, the interviewer, therapist, grandmother and investigating detective. Although our client was only on trial in Georgia for conduct that allegedly occurred in that jurisdiction, the State was able to introduce statements regarding the conduct that allegedly occurred in South Carolina as “propensity evidence.” Cross-examination of the state’s witnesses brought out inconsistencies in the complainant’s testimony and also established the implausibility of the South Carolina allegations. At the conclusion of the State’s case, a defense motion for directed verdict as to Count 1 was granted.

The defense presented the testimony of 6 witnesses: South Carolina defense counsel, Client and 4 character witnesses, including Client’s friend of 50 years, his son and 2 former wives. The testimony of South Carolina defense counsel was crucial because it permitted argument during closing that no action had been taken in South Carolina, and Client had the constitutional right to defend himself in that jurisdiction as well.

The case went to the jury on Monday, May 15, 2017, around lunch time. After several hours, the jurors sent a note saying that they were hopelessly deadlocked. Nevertheless, the judge ordered them to return the following morning and continue deliberations. After a total of 8 hours over 2 days, the jury entered Not Guilty verdicts to both remaining counts on May 16, 2017.

Jury Finds West Virginia Magistrate Judge Not Guilty of Sexual Abuse

State: West Virginia
Court: Harrison County Circuit Court
Case Name: State v. M.G.
Lead Attorney: Tom Pavlinic
Co-counsel: Belinda Haynie
Judge: Thomas W. Steptoe Jr.
Date: July 5, 2016

Result: Jury Verdict – Not Guilty on All Counts

The History

Our client was a 46-year old Magistrate Judge with 2 older children when he met the mother (to be referred to as “Mother”) of the complainant in 2000, who had a 9-year old son and a then 4-year old daughter, the complainant (to be referred to as “Complainant”). In 2003 our client, along with his daughter, Mother and her 2 children moved in together. When our client (to be referred to as “Client”) and Mother married in 2005, she was employed by the prosecutor’s office.


Not-Guilty Verdict After Conviction Overturned on Appeal

State: Kansas
Court: Labette County District Court
Case Name: State v. R.C.
Lead Attorney: Tom Pavlinic
Co-counsel: Melanie S. Morgan
Judge: Jeffry L. Jack
Date: May 01, 2015

Result: Jury Verdict – Not Guilty on All Counts

When our client was only eighteen years old, he started dating a girl who had two young daughters, then ages one and two. They had an on-again off-again relationship for a number of years. In 2007, they purchased a home together, and the daughters moved in with them permanently. Shortly after moving in together, both daughters accused him of having sexually abused them. Although they made allegations of sexual touching, they both denied any penetration. At first, the girls’ mother supported him, but she then turned against him.

Law enforcement did not conduct a very thorough investigation and moved forward primarily on the girls’ allegations. Our client was arrested and went to trial in August 2009. As part of its evidence at the 2009 trial, the prosecutor presented the testimony of a nurse who displayed photographs of both girls’ hymens and testified that they were obliterated. She also displayed pictures of normal hymens, leaving the jury with the impression that there must have been some abuse. Our client was convicted, sentenced to 14 years and required to register as a sex offender for the rest of his life. He served almost four years before his conviction was overturned on appeal. The court released him on an increased bail pending the second trial.

Efforts to resolve the case without a second trial were not successful. The defense offered to accept a plea to time served. The state demanded a sentence of 9 years. Our client rejected the state’s offer and went to trial.

In 2016, Tom was brought in by our client and his family to serve as co-counsel at the retrial — nearly 6 years after the charges were first brought. He worked with one of the original attorneys who had tried the case in 2009, Melanie Morgan, who was very effective in cross-examining the investigating agent at the second trial and exposing the lack of any meaningful investigation. It was obvious when the cross examination was complete, that there had been a rush to judgment.

In addition, the defense took a different approach with the evidence. Since the medical evidence (obliterated hymens) did not comport to the girls’ allegations (touching but no penetration), we brought in a gynecologist who testified that there must have been some penetration, and that the medical evidence was not consistent with the allegations. The defense then displayed the evidence used by the state in its first trial, but not utilized in the second. Tom and Melanie pointed out to the jury that it was the defense who presented the medical evidence that was collected by the state.

There was some evidence that the mother accused a member of her family of abuse. This testimony was not admitted at the first trial but was in the second. As part of the criminal investigation, the social worker and the investigating law enforcement officer recorded video statements from each of the girls, all of which were played for the jury at trial (for over 1.5 hours) despite the girls’ having testified. The defense included a Power Point presentation in its closing argument that outlined all of the reasonable doubt generated by not only the evidence but also the lack of evidence. The jury deliberated less than two hours before finding our client not guilty of all counts.

Not-Guilty Verdict Despite Prosecution’s Character Attack

State: Maryland
Court: Circuit Court for Frederick County
Case Name: State v. J.B.
Lead Attorney: Tom Pavlinic
Judge: Theresa M. Adams
Date: February 24, 2015

Result: Jury Verdict – Not Guilty on All 6 Counts

The State charged our client with 5 counts of second degree rape, 2 counts of second degree sex offense, 1 count of third degree sex offense and 1 count of assault. One count of rape and the third degree sex offense and assault counts were dismissed prior to trial.  The only plea offer the state made was 40 years with all but 20 years suspended.  Because the charges are deemed to be crimes of violence under Maryland law, the client would have had to serve a minimum of 10 years before even being eligible for parole.  The plea was rejected.

The case lasted 5 full days and presented some challenging issues for the defense.  Before retaining counsel, the client gave a 2-hour video interview with law enforcement.  During the interrogation, he lied about taking pictures and his past association over many years with the complainant who had a limited IQ.  The evidence also established that he was married and having an affair with the complainant’s mother.  During closing argument, the defense readily conceded he lied to the police, committed adultery and  displayed morally objectionable behavior,  This conduct, though, did not make him a rapist.  Three solid character witnesses testified as to his being peaceful, kind and non-violent.  The jury returned its not guilty verdicts on all counts after 7 hours of deliberation.

Not-Guilty Verdict After Two Previous Hung Jury Trials

State: Texas
Court: 380th Judicial District Court (Collin County)
Case Name: Texas v. C.D.
Lead Attorney: Tom Pavlinic
Co-counsel: Heather Barbieri
Judge: Keith Dean
Date: March 2014

Result: Not Guilty (Jury Trial) ALL COUNTS

Our client was charged in Collin County Texas with nine counts of Indecency with a Child through sexual contact, which are second degree felonies each carrying a potential sentence of a minimum of two to a maximum of twenty years of incarceration.

The facts were nothing short of bizarre.  His stepdaughter accused him of touching her breast one time and her vagina one time in 2003 for “a few seconds” when she was 7 years old.  The alleged abuse stopped completely for three years until the family moved into a new home.  She then said that there were additional incidents of touching that lasted only seconds when she was between 11 and 15. In the first two trials, the specific incidents were not tied to any specific year or date.  She reported the abuse in 2011, when she was 15 years old, and her mom and stepfather were arguing about divorce.


Facing 35-Year Sentence and Lifetime Registry: All Charges Dropped

State: Kentucky
Court: Nelson Circuit Court
Case Name: Kentucky v. D.O. Jr.
Lead Attorney: Tom Pavlinic
Co-counsel: Julie M. Kaelin
Judge: John D. Seay
Date: October 2013

Result: All charges dropped prior to trial.

D.O. is the 42-year-old biological father of K.G.O, who was 4 years old at the time the allegations arose.  In the midst of a custody/visitation dispute and related domestic court involvement, K.G.O. claimed D.O “pinched and kissed her vagina”.

As a result of the allegations, he was charged with 4 felony offenses including First Degree Sexual Abuse and First Degree Sodomy. He faced a maximum of 35 years of incarceration and life-time reporting on the Sexual Registry.

Aggressive investigation and representation was undertaken including a pretrial challenge and hearing regarding the competency of the child, where we asserted that her claims were the result of suggestibility or taint induced by the natural mother. Kentucky does not legally recognize the concept of “suggestibility”, but psychological expert testimony was obtained and presented. Although the Court ruled in favor of the State, the Judge indicated he had “grave concerns” about the truthfulness of the child.

Motion filing, investigation and probing analysis continued between motion hearings and trial.  At the time of jury selection, all charges were dropped by the State.  Furthermore, we were able to obtain a court order that mandated D.O. would regain the partial custody of his daughter he had before the charges were filed, after a suitable period of supervised visitation.

Facing 20-Year Mandatory Minimum Sentence: No Megan’s Law Plea

State: Pennsylvania
Court: Warren County Common Pleas
Case Name: Commonwealth of Pennsylvania v. Kelly P.
Lead Attorney: Tom Pavlinic
Co-counsel: Robert C. Greene
Judge: Gregory J. Hammond
Date: August 2013

Result: Guilty plea to a single misdemeanor with no Megan’s Law registration

In a 10-count criminal information, our client was charged with sexual molestation of a child age 10-14. The accuser was age 24 when the accusations were brought forth. The charges carried a potential 94-year maximum sentence including a 20-year mandatory minimum sentence.  After exhaustive investigation, witness interviews and the retaining of a DNA expert, a plea bargain was reached to plead to a single misdemeanor count with a sentence range of probation to 3 months, and most significantly no sexual registry. Our client was sentenced to four years of probation.

State’s Expert Discredited; Inconsistencies of Child Witness Revealed

State: West Virginia
Court: Putnam County, WV
Case Name: West Virginia v. Roger D.
Lead Attorney: Tom Pavlinic
Co-counsel: Matt Clark
Judge: Philip Stowers
Date: April 2013

Result: Not Guilty (Jury Trial) ALL COUNTS

Our client was charged with Sexual Abuse in the First Degree; Sexual Abuse by a Guardian,Custodian or Person in a Position of Trust; and Use of Obscene Matter with Intent to Seduce a Minor. This was a huge victory in Putnam County, West Virginia for a number of reasons.

First, the judge in the criminal trial had presided over custody issues in family court. After hearing the evidence in that proceeding, he issued written findings of fact that Roger had sexually abuse his step-daughter continuously over a 5-year period. He refused to recuse himself, and the WV Supreme Court said he did not have to. Second, the judge refused a misdemeanor plea with lifetime sexual registration, saying that the plea was too lenient. Roger was facing 50 years and lifetime supervision over and above the registration. Third, the judge permitted the prosecution to call a previously undisclosed expert with only 2 days notice and would not grant a continuance. He said we could get our own expert – never imagining that we could and did! Fourth, the State paraded all its usual witnesses from law enforcement and the Child Advocacy Center. We were able to point out inconsistencies in the child’s testimony that were created solely through the State’s own evidence. The case began on Monday and the jury returned Not Guilty verdicts on all counts on Wednesday evening after nearly 6 hours of deliberation.

All Counts Dismissed After Extensive Pre-Trial Motions

State: Florida
Court: Circuit Court for Manatee County, FL
Case Name: Florida v. Mark R.
Lead Attorney: Tom Pavlinic
Co-counsel: E. Jon Weiffenbach
Judge: Nicholas
Date: March 2013


Our client was accused of performing sexual acts involving three of his natural children. He was charged with eight felony counts, including sexual battery of children, and lewd and lascivious molestation. Three counts were felonies that carried a sentence of life without parole. After more than one year of pre-trial motions, all charges were nol prossed (dismissed) by the Florida State’s Attorney Office.

Cross Examination of Children Accusers Reveals Contradictions

State: Pennsylvania
Court: Court of Common Pleas for York County, PA
Case Name: Commonwealth v. James W.
Lead Attorney: Tom Pavlinic
Co-counsel: Jerry J. Russo
Judge: Bortner
Trial Date: January 2013

Result: Not Guilty (Jury Verdict) – ALL COUNTS

The Commonwealth charged our client with Involuntary Deviate Sexual Intercourse and 6 related counts involving 2 children, ages 8 and 9 at the time of the offense and 9 and 10 at the time of trial.  The accusation was that he forced the 9-year old to have oral sex with him when she and the other neighbor slept out over night in a tent with our client and his daughter.  Nearly 6 months later, the other girl said she, too, had been touched. The Commonwealth was able to play the girls’ videotaped interviews as part of its case in chief. The girls’ in-court testimony was filled with contradictions.

The judge granted our motion to dismiss 2 of the counts at the conclusion of the Commonwealth’s case.  The jury deliberated for 6 hours over two days and then entered not guilty verdicts on the 5 remaining counts.

Expert Computer Analysis Debunks Teen’s Accusations of Sexual Abuse

State: Maryland
Court: Circuit Court for Howard County
Case Name: State of Maryland v. RST
Judge: Gelfman
Lead Attorney: Tom Pavlinic
Co-counsel: Attorney Ron Marryott
Trial Date: August 2012

Result: Not Guilty (Jury Verdict) – ALL COUNTS: Sex Abuse of a Minor; Sex Offense Third Degree; Assault- Second Degree.

Case Comments: Our client, a successful businessman, was charged with digitally penetrating his 13-year-old daughter while she was in his custody/care for weekend visitation. The natural mother and client had been divorced for years. The alleged victim testified that she searched for sex abuse “victim” websites shortly after the alleged abuse had occurred. The State introduced this testimony to corroborate her accusations. We secured the services of an expert computer analyst who determined and testified that the complaining witness in fact was on Facebook and playing games on her laptop shortly after the “abuse”, and that the sex abuse “victim” websites represented only a very small percentage of her computer use in the days following the alleged abuse. The expert completely undermined the alleged victim’s trial testimony, which played a large part in securing a not guilty verdict.

Expert Analysis Highlights Inconsistencies: Leads to Maryland Man’s Case Being Placed on the Stet Docket

State: Maryland
Court: Circuit Court for Frederick County
Case Name: State v. B. U.
Lead Attorney: Tom Pavlinic
Date: May 1, 2012

Our client, his wife and their sons visited with the wife’s former college friend for less than 24 hours on December 31, 2010 to January 1, 2011. Shortly after the client and his wife left on New Year’s Day, the friend’s daughter claimed she had been touched while she sat in an open foyer with her mother and the client’s wife in an adjacent bedroom.  The daughter later told her mother that she had a dream of being abused before the abuse ever allegedly happened.  Despite the bizarre and implausible nature of the allegations, the prosecution went forward.

The prosecutrix wanted to present the testimony of a social worker to opine about behaviors of sexually abused children.  Defense filed a motion in limine supported by an affidavit from Dr. Hagan and requested an evidentiary hearing.  The prosecution withdrew its request without a hearing.

Later during the discovery phase of the case, the child disputed and recanted defense-helpful statements that she had made to the investigating trooper.  Confronted with these contradictions, on May 1, 2012, the prosecution abandoned the case and placed it on the stet docket.  (Stet is a Maryland procedure that operates like a deferred prosecution with no finding.  If the person charged does not have any further problem with law enforcement, the case is formally dismissed after 3 years and the client’s records can be expunged.)

Maryland Man Accused of Sexual Abuse: Not Guilty All Counts

State: Maryland
Court:  Circuit Court for Prince George’s County
Case Name:  State v. D.W.
Lead Attorney: Tom Pavlinic
Judge:  Serrette
Co-counsel:  None
Date: October 11, 2011

Result: Not Guilty (Jury Verdict) – All 5 Counts: Custodial abuse, object penetration, attempted object penetration, improper touching and assault

Case Comments:  Our client was accused of putting a light bulb his son’s anus.  The son gave numerous contradictions on cross-examination.  We had the light bulb examined: it was negative for fecal matter, and the police technician testified for the defense.  We also had a gastroenterologist who had conducted 55,000 anal exams over 35 years testify that the nurse’s test for sphincter tone was bogus.

Pennsylvania Client Charged with Felony Sex Crimes – No Megan’s Law Plea

State: Pennsylvania
Court:  Court of Common Pleas for Allegheny County
Case Name:  Commonwealth v. J.B.
Lead Attorney: Tom Pavlinic
Judge:  McDaniel
Co-counsel:  David Shrager
Date: April 25, 2011

Result: Nolo Contendere Misdemeanor Plea: No Megan’s Law

Case Comments:  Our client was accused of having sexual contact with a 7-year old girl while at the child’s mother’s residence. Despite passing a police-administered polygraph, he was charged with 1st degree and 2nd degree felonies. At his first scheduled trial the prosecution offered our client a plea, but one that was unacceptable to him and us. The trial was postponed. We were then offered a plea the week before his second scheduled trial: no jail time, no Megan’s Law registry, and a nolo contendere plea. While we firmly believed in our client’s factual innocence and were eager to prove this in court, the plea was an acceptable alternative.

Pennsylvania Man Accused of Groping: Not Guilty All Counts

State: Pennsylvania
Court:  Court of Common Pleas for York County
Case Name:  Commonwealth v. G.Z.
Lead Attorney: Tom Pavlinic
Judge:  Kelley
Co-counsel:  Autumn Walden
Date: February 11, 2011

Result: Not Guilty – All Counts (Jury Verdict)

Case Comments:  Our client was gay.  He was accused of groping a much bigger and stronger 17-year old athlete in the locker room of a public gym.  Testimony from the prosecution’s own witnesses contradicted not only the complainant but also each other.

Vermont Client Charged with Molestation: All Charges Dismissed

State:  Vermont
Court:  Superior Court, Washington Criminal Division
Case Name:  State v. D.F.
Lead Attorney: Tom Pavlinic
Judge:  Not Assigned
Co-counsel:  Lisa Shelkrot
Date: January 6, 2011

Result:  Dismissed prior to trial

Case Comments:  The Complainant was a special-needs student who had been transported by our client.  His lack of credibility was established when the investigation showed that he had made previous unfounded complaints against others.

Maryland Sex Abuse Case Nolle Prosequi on Morning of Trial

State:  Maryland
Court:  Circuit Court for Baltimore City
Case Name:  State v. B.E.
Lead Attorney: Tom Pavlinic
Judge:  Not Assigned
Co-counsel:  Charlotte Weinstein
Trial Date: December 15, 2010

Result:  Entered Nolle Prosequi on morning of trial

Case Comments:  Defense pointed out that the charges were inconsistent with the (i) police investigation, (ii) statements made to the social worker and (iii) the grand jury presentation.  Case dismissed when a detailed letter questioned prosecutorial ethics and threatened outside intervention.

Virginia 4-Year Old Barred From Testifying: Not Guilty All Counts

State:  Virginia
Court:  Circuit Court for Suffolk County
Case Name:  Commonwealth v. D.H.
Lead Attorney: Tom Pavlinic
Judge:  Eason
Co-counsel:  Melinda Glaubke
Date: October 2010

Result:  Not Guilty – All Counts (Jury Verdict)

Case Comments:  The complainant was only 4 years old.  The judge found her testimony unreliable and did not permit her to testify.  The prosecution proceeded without the child’s testimony, attempting to rely on our client’s purported statement to the police.

No Medical Evidence: Not Guilty All Counts

State:  Maryland
Court:  Circuit Court for Anne Arundel County
Case Name:  State v. T.S.
Lead Attorney: Tom Pavlinic
Judge:  North
Co-counsel:  Charlotte Weinstein
Date: September 2010

Result:  Not Guilty – All Counts (Jury Verdict)

Case Comments:  Father accused of abusing his 2 teenage daughters at the same time.  There was no medical evidence to support the allegations.  Pediatrician and therapist testified for the defense.  Allegations arose during a divorce case and only after the children were sent to Florida to visit the wife’s family

Pennsylvania Vindictive Girlfriend: Not Guilty All Counts

State: Pennsylvania
Court:  Court of Common Pleas for York County
Case Name:  Commonwealth v. R.Z.
Lead Attorney: Tom Pavlinic
Judge:  Kennedy
Co-counsel:  Jerry Lord
Date: August 2010

Result: Not Guilty – All Counts (Jury Verdict)

Case Comments:  Allegations of sexual abuse of the teenage daughter of our client’s girlfriend made when the relationship ended.  Along with many photographs, defense presented testimony of independent witnesses who observed the interaction with the complainant and our client.

Not Guilty Jury Verdict To All 9 Sexual Abuse Counts In 7-Year Old Case

State: Pennsylvania
Court:  Court of Common Pleas for Allegheny County
Case Name:  Commonwealth v. Donald H. Stettner
Lead Attorney: Tom Pavlinic
Judge:  Sasinoski
Co-counsel:  Timothy Lucas
Date: March 2010 (17-day trial)

Result: Not Guilty – All 9 Counts (Jury Verdict)

Case Comments:

In Pittsburgh, PA a school psychologist was accused of anally raping his adopted son approximately 300 to 600 times when the young man was between 9 and 17 years of age. The son did not go to the police until 2002, more that 5 years after the alleged abuse ended. Our client was arrested on January 22, 2003. The son also accused his natural mother of sexual abuse. The mother denied any abuse on her part when testifying for the prosecution and against her husband during the trial. The case spanned 16 days from jury selection until jury verdict and was not concluded until March 19, 2010, over 7 years after the arrest.

Attorneys Tom Pavlinic and Tim Lucas tried the case together and presented the testimony of many fact witnesses as well as the expert testimony of a gastroenterologist to describe what anal-rectal medical findings would have been associated with the alleged abuse. There were no medical findings, and the complainant refused to submit to a voluntary medical examination.

Because of the bizarre nature of the allegations, the relentless prosecution to which he was subjected and the negative impact this ordeal has had on his life, our client has authorized us to share his traumatic experience with you. To learn more details about this terrible injustice Google: Dr. Donald Stettner, school psychologist, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.

Vindictive Divorcee: Allegations of Rape and Child Sexual Abuse Unfounded: Not Guilty All Counts

State:  Delaware
Court:  Superior Court for Sussex County
Case Name:  State v. R.P.
Lead Attorney: Tom Pavlinic
Judge:  Graves
Co-counsel:  Kate Aaronson
Date: December 2009

Result:  Not Guilty – All Counts (Jury Verdict)

Comments:  Allegations of spousal rape that were made along with allegations of child sex abuse during a divorce case.

Unreliability of Child Complainant: Not Guilty All Counts

State:  Virginia
Court:  Circuit Court for Lancaster County
Case Name:  Commonwealth v. T.C.
Lead Attorney: Tom Pavlinic
Judge:  Talifero
Co-counsel:  Jud Collier
Date: September 2009

Result:  Not Guilty – All Counts (Jury Verdict)

Comments:  Complainant was only 6 years old.  Defense challenged competency due to suggestion, but the court permitted the child to testify.  Cross examination established the unreliability of the allegations.

The following case results are in a different format because certain data used in the new format was not available at the time of the publication of this page. We apologize for the inconsistency and will be working to recover this data, including the date, case name, court and presiding judge.

Post Conviction Petition Leads to 50-Year Sentence Being Vacated

A DE man was convicted of two child sex abuse counts that resulted in a 50-year sentence. The client was guilty of lesser offenses but convicted of much more serious charges. Tom Pavlinic and Kate Aaronson were retained to obtain post conviction relief. An analysis of the evidence showed that the trial attorney failed to challenge the competency of a 4-year old child whose testimony was “tainted” by suggestion.

After the post conviction petition was filed, trial counsel was presented with the affidavit of the psychologist retained to provide expert testimony on suggestion. To his credit, trial counsel admitted that he was ineffective for failing to understand and raise the competency challenge and submitted an affidavit to support the petition. Tom and Kate were able to have the old 50-year sentence vacated and structured a plea that resulted in a new 10-year sentence. Kate Aaronson deserves the credit for maneuvering this delicate case so deftly through the criminal justice system.

Not Guilty Verdict for Virginia Dentist in Court Trial

A Fairfax, VA dentist was accused of the sexual assault of a teenage girl who visited his home while his entire family as well as hers were there for a social engagement. On the morning of trial, the prosecutor dropped the sex assault count and pursued the case only as a simple assault hoping to increase his chances for a conviction. The court found our client not guilty. Tom Pavlinic and Kim Irving tried this case together.

4-Hour Jury Deliberation Results in Not Guilty Verdicts on All 6 Counts

A Maryland man who moved to York, PA with his girlfriend and her 3 children was accused by the girlfriend’s 12-year old daughter of indecent sexual assault, a crime that carries a 10-year minimum, mandatory term of incarceration. Our client’s family and friends aggressively rallied behind him to provide both emotional and financial support.

After a 3-day jury trial in which the defense presented the testimony of nearly a dozen fact and character witnesses, introduced many photographs as exhibits and utilized a power point presentation during closing argument, the jury entered not guilty verdicts on all 6 counts after 4 hours of deliberation. Tom Pavlinic acted as lead counsel and tried the case with local York County attorney, Jerry Lord.

Spousal Rape: Not Guilty Jury Verdict (First Trial)

In Georgetown, DE a former husband was accused by his wife of spousal rape that allegedly occurred years before. The charges were only filed when the wife learned that her husband had introduced their children to his new girlfriend. The client was facing a minimum mandatory term of 30 years incarceration. The jury returned a not guilty verdict on both counts after only 55 minutes of deliberation. Tom Pavlinic and Kate Aaronson tried the case together.

Child Sexual Abuse: Not Guilty Jury Verdict

In Lancaster, VA the husband of a day care provider was accused of touching one of the children for whom the wife was providing day care. The defense requested a taint hearing that was only partially granted by the court. The case was favorably concluded with a not guilty jury verdict. Jud Colliers was the lead attorney. Tom Pavlinic served as co-counsel and conducted the cross-examination of the minor children.

Rape: Not Guilty Jury Verdict

A Virginia police officer and a number of his colleagues went to Ocean City, MD to celebrate a bachelor party. While at one of the local nightclubs, the officer met and shared drinks with a young lady. She went back to his hotel, and they engaged in sexual intercourse. She claimed rape; he maintained it was consensual. The case proceeded to a jury trial. Evidence lifted by the defense team off of a MySpace account was shown to the jury. The officer was found not guilty on all counts. Tom Pavlinic and Charlotte Weinstein tried the case together.

Child Sexual Abuse: Case Dismissed

A man previously convicted of child sexual abuse was charged in Virginia Beach, VA with having abused the 4-year old twins of his girl friend. The allegations were brought by the girl friend’s former husband in the context of a custody matter. Experts were retained to show that the twins’ statements to social workers were the product of suggestion. Case was dismissed on all counts before trial. Tom Pavlinic and Melinda Glaubke worked the criminal case together. Melinda followed through and won a dismissal of all civil findings at an appellate administrative hearing.

Sexual Abuse: Case Dismissed

A sailor in Norfolk, VA was charged with having sexually abused the 5-year old daughter of a shipmate. The defense requested and received permission from the court to conduct a full “taint” hearing to establish that the child’s statements were the product of suggestion. At a hearing that was scheduled for November 2009, the prosecution offered a misdemeanor plea which was accepted without any jail time or sexual abuse registry. Tom Pavlinic and Melinda Glaubke handled this case of first impression together.

Child Molestation: Not Guilty Jury Verdict, Other Charges Dismissed

In Annapolis, MD a 19-year old was tried for having repeatedly molested his 2 younger step-brothers. The charges were severed for trial. The first trial resulted in a not guilty verdict on the most serious charges and a hung jury on the remaining ones. Defense presented evidence from a dozen witnesses to refute the timeline that the prosecution tried to establish. After the first verdict, all of the remaining charges in the first trial as well as the charges brought by the other child were dismissed. Tom Pavlinic and Charlotte Weinstein tried the case together.

Possession of Child Pornography: Full Acquittal

A man in Bristol, VA was accused of having possessed hundreds of images of child pornography. Extensive cross examination of the Commonwealth’s “expert” resulted in the court granting a motion for judgment of acquittal at the end of the prosecutor’s case. The defense did not have to present any evidence. Tom Pavlinic and Jeff Coale handled the defense.

Child Sexual Abuse: All Charges Dropped

In Georgetown, DE the State indicted a father for having sexually abused his four-year old daughter. It was obvious to the defense that the former wife was behind the charges. Defense filed an extensive expert affidavit pointing out that the child had been coached. The criminal charges were dropped, and the case was resolved in the family law court. Tom Pavlinic and Kate Aaronson worked the case together.

Sexual Abuse: Full Acquittal

A 9-day trial in Martinsburg, WV resulted in a court decision that cleared the father of any sex abuse of his daughter in an abuse and neglect action brought by the former wife. The defense was able to undermine the credibility of the wife’s so-called expert and presented credible expert testimony upon which the court relied. Tom Pavlinic was lead counsel, and Jeff Burcham served as local counsel. Kirk Bottner was the court-appointed GAL.

Accusation of Date Rape: Dismissed at Preliminary Hearing

A sailor in Stafford, VA was accused of a date rape. Prior to the preliminary hearing, the defense team interviewed all of the independent witnesses. When the alleged victim was cross examined, her credibility was attacked beyond rehabilitation. The court refused to find probable cause, and no charges were formally brought. This early end to the prosecution was brought about by the collective efforts of Tom Pavlinic and Kimberly Irving.

Child Molestation: Reduced to Misdemeanor

A member of the U.S. Naval Academy band in Annapolis, MD was accused of having molested his neighbor’s daughter. On the day of trial the prosecution offered a plea to a misdemeanor count, no jail time, no criminal record and no listing on the sexual registry. The plea was accepted with no risk to the client. Attorneys Tom Pavlinic and Charlotte Weinstein worked every aspect of the case together.

Child Abuse: Not Guilty Jury Verdict, Dismissal of Other Charges

A Baltimore, MD school teacher was accused of having sexually abused foster children for whom he and his wife were caring. The first trial resulted in a not guilty verdict on all counts after a 3-day jury trial. The second case was dismissed with no trial. A civil action brought against the teacher was also dismissed with prejudice. Tom Pavlinic and Rowe Stayton handled the defense.

Third Degree Sexual Abuse: Favorable Plea

In Upper Marlboro, MD, the state charged a Marine with attempted second degree sexual abuse of a 3-year old. A careful analysis of the evidence revealed that only a third degree charge was appropriate. The client admitted his involvement in a video taped statement to the police. A favorable plea was finally negotiated, eliminating the harsh consequences of a second degree conviction. Tom Pavlinic handled the case, and Charlotte Weinstein helped with the preparation.

Child Abuse: Judgment of Acquittal

In Rockville, MD a foreign national was accused of having abused a special needs child on a school bus. The judge denied the defense request for a full competency/taint hearing. At the trial, however, the child was unable to testify, and the defense was able to block the admission into evidence of alleged statements made by the child to her mother and social workers. The case ended with a dismissal of the charges on a motion for Judgment of Acquittal. Tom Pavlinic handled the defense, and Charlotte Weinstein prepared the research.

Child Sexual Abuse: Appeal Pending

A young man was convicted on sexual offenses against his neighbor’s daughters in Towson, MD. During the trial there was confusion about the dates of the alleged abuse. Evidence showed that the abuse could not have occurred during the time frame charged. To clear up this ambiguity, the defense requested the “unanimous jury instruction,” which the trial judge refused to give. The Maryland Court of Appeals granted a Petition for Writ of Certioari on this important issue of first impression. Tom Pavlinic will argue the case before the appellate panel later this year.

Conviction of Child Molestation: New Law Made on Appeal!

A conviction of a father in Wilkes Barre, PA led to an appeal on the issue of whether suggestions made to young children “tainted” their testimony. The Pennsylvania Supreme Court issued a favorable opinion as a matter of first impression on this issue. Tom Pavlinic and Mark Mack represented the client at the trial and on appeal.

Civil Suit Over Child Abuse: Case Dismissed

In New Jersey, an adult son sued his parents for alleged sexual abuse that he claimed occurred decades ago and that he only recently “remembered.” After extensive pre-trial discovery and the involvement of experts, the case was dismissed with prejudice. This means that the case cannot be refiled. Pat Jennings has extensive expertise in federal criminal and civil litigation. Tom Pavlinic retained the experts and served as co-counsel on this case.

Accusation of Sexual Abuse: No Charges Filed

In Cleveland, OH a former wife accused her husband of sexually abusing their daughter. No criminal charges were brought. The family court concluded from the evidence that no abuse had taken place. The wife’s “expert” was completely discredited. Heather Dyer and Tom Pavlinic handled this case.

Date Rape in DC: Not Guilty Verdict in Judge Trial

An employee of a prominent Washington, DC law firm was originally charged with rape. Prosecutors dropped that count but pressed for a conviction on a lesser offense that did not afford the client the right to a jury trial. Tom Pavlinic and Charles Shaffer tried this case before a judge and won a not guilty verdict.

Sex Abuse Charges: Dropped After Arrest

An uncle was charged in Washington, DC with having sexually abused his sister’s sons. After his arrest, the defense team scrutinized the evidence carefully and took the rare and unusual step of permitting the client to be interviewed by the prosecutor. As a result of that strategy, all the charges against the client were dropped. Tom Pavlinic and Richard Finci collaborated on the effort that brought about this favorable conclusion.

Accusations of Child Sex Abuse: No Charges Brought

In New Jersey, a grandfather was accused of sexually molesting his granddaughter. The child’s mother was pushing to have charges brought. The attorneys interceded with law enforcement and no charges were filed. Tom Pavlinic and Jim Wronko collaborated on this case.

Multiple Counts of Child Sex Abuse: Appeal Pending

In Stroudsburg, PA a man was convicted of multiple counts of child sex abuse against neighborhood children. The most serious count was attacked by the defense team in a post-trial motion as being insufficient under the law. This is a proceeding that permits the judge to overturn the jury and strike the conviction. This issue has been preserved and is now being argued on appeal. Tom Pavlinic and Robert Reno comprised the defense team.

Boyfriend Charged with Sex Abuse: Plea Negotiated for No Jail Time

In Rockville, MD a client admittedly touched his girlfriend’s minor daughter. The defense was able to rally the family and friends to speak on our client’s behalf. A plea was arranged that spared the client any jail time. He received straight probation. Tom Pavlinic and Maria Mena represented this Spanish-speaking client.

First Degree Child Rape: No Jail, No Public Registration Plea (Second Trial)

In Georgetown, DE, our client had been previously found not guilty of spousal rape. The allegations that his former spouse made about the rape of their daughter were severed for trial. This offense carries a mandatory sentence of 25 years to life imprisonment in DE. The defense filed a motion attacking the interview protocol employed by law enforcement when taking statements from minor children and asking that the child be precluded from testifying. After the hearing, the prosecution offered a plea to a lesser of no jail time and no public registration. Tom Pavlinic and Kate Aaronson continued their joint representation.

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If you or someone you know has been charged with or suspected of a committing a sexual crime, call us at 800-993-0632 to speak with an experienced attorney. We are ready to help.