Course Description

This course is designed to give an overview of criminal law practice for practitioners new to this area of law. Though some examples are specific to Westmoreland County, the course is broad enough to be applicable to practice in any PA county. Topics include:

  • Investigations and arrests
  • Preliminary arraignments
  • Bonds
  • Client consultations and fee agreements
  • Preliminary hearings
  • Pleas
  • Formal arraignments
  • Scheduling
  • Pretrial motions and practice
  • Sentencing
  • Discovery
  • Dispositions 
  • Incarcerations

Please note that criminal trial practice is not included as a topic in this course, but is planned for a future course.

This course includes video recorded for a live CLE presentation for the Westmoreland Bar Association.

Videography services were provided by Network Deposition Services.

Your purchase includes access to the course and course materials for 90 days.

CLE Credit:

2 PA Substantive CLEs

This course contains approximately 120 minutes of content, all of which is required for course completion.

Your certificate of completion will be issued automatically after all elements of the course have been viewed/completed.  Credits will be reported to the CLE Board within 30 days of your completion of the course and your completion date will be reported as the day on which you actually finished the course.

Minimum System Requirements:

This course includes downloads of PDF documents (Portable Document Format) and streaming video. Viewing the documents will require Adobe Acrobat Reader or other PDF viewing software.  Adobe Acrobat Reader is available for free from the Adobe website.

The video player will run on Mac OS, Windows and Linux as well as most mobile devices and tablets on any browser that supports Adobe Flash and/or HTML5.  Supported browsers include Chrome, Safari, Firefox, Internet Explorer 9,10,11, and Microsoft Edge.  Internet Explorer 8 is not supported on Windows XP for security reasons, but is supported on Windows 7 or higher operating systems.

An internet connection with a minimum speed of 768 kilobits per second is required.  At least 5MB/sec is recommended to stream video in full HD quality.  Please note that the video player may downgrade the quality of the video to accommodate lower connection speeds.

Course Presenter

  • Michael Ferguson, Esq.; Timothy Andrews, Esq.;  and Leo Ciaramitaro, Esq.

    Michael Ferguson, Esq.; Timothy Andrews, Esq.; and Leo Ciaramitaro, Esq.

    Michael D. Ferguson is a graduate of the University of Pittsburgh School of Law and has been a practicing trial attorney for over twenty five years.  He is currently a Partner at Ferguson Law Associates in Latrobe, PA, where his practice includes personal injury, wrongful death, and criminal defense practice.  He previously served as an Assistant District Attorney for Westmoreland County, Pennsylvania, where he prosecuted hundreds of criminal cases ranging from DUIs to homicide.  Attorney Ferguson is a regular course presenter for the Westmoreland County Bar Association, where he has presented seminars on topics including wrongful death and survivor actions, automobile accident cases, criminal defense practice, uninsured and underinsured motorist claims, and DUI practice.

    Timothy C. Andrews is a former prosecutor with over 30 years of experience handling thousands of cases and many trials from traffic tickets and DUI to murder and serious felonies.  A former Assistant District Attorney for Westmoreland County, Attorney Andrews currently has a private practice in Greensburg which includes DUI and DWI defense, criminal law, civil litigation, and divorce and custody matters.

    Leo Ciaramitaro has been serving as an Assistant District Attorney with the Westmoreland County District Attorney's Office for more than twenty years. Attorney Ciaramitaro also served as a Deputy Staff Judge Advocate in the United States Army, PA National Guard. He is a graduate of the Duquesne University School of Law.

Course curriculum

  • 1
    Course Materials
    • How to Navigate This Course
    • Criminal Practice 101 Course Materials (printing optional)
    • Criminal Practice Part One
    • Criminal Practice Part Two
    • Criminal Practice Part Three
    • Course Evaluation (Required)