Pocomoke City, Maryland Criminal Lawyers

Frank Benvenuto
PREMIUM

Dedicated to protecting the rights of the accused. Call for a free consultation!

I’m an experienced criminal defense lawyer and represent clients in all types of criminal cases throughout Maryland. I will fight for you and your rights and help you through every step of your case. Read More »
10.0Justia Lawyer Rating for Frank Benvenuto View Profile
Deborah Ullmann
Claimed Lawyer Profile
Pocomoke City, MD Criminal Law Lawyer with 32 years experience
(410) 603-9140 203 Second Street
Pocomoke City, MD 21851
Criminal, Appeals, DUI and Traffic Tickets
University of Baltimore
John K. Phoebus
Claimed Lawyer ProfileSocial Media
Crisfield, MD Criminal Law Attorney with 22 years experience
(410) 968-9200 517 West Main Street
Crisfield, MD 21817
Criminal, Business, DUI and Traffic Tickets
Pennsylvania State University - Dickinson School of Law
In 2014, solo practitioners James V. Anthenelli and John K. Phoebus joined with former State’s Attorney Kristy M. Hickman to create Anthenelli, Phoebus & Hickman, LLC. James V. Anthenelli was a former assistant state’s attorney with over 38 years’ experience. His practice has concentrated in the area of criminal defense. John K. Phoebus has been in private practice for more than 18 years and has focused on litigation including high-profile criminal defense cases and civil litigation. Joining the merger of these two firms is former State’s Attorney Kristy M. Hickman who brings with her the experience of having won all...
Angie DiPietro
Claimed Lawyer ProfileSocial Media
Sailsbury, MD Criminal Law Attorney with 22 years experience
(410) 441-5400 110 Baptist Street
Sailsbury, MD 21801
Free ConsultationCriminal and DUI
University of Baltimore School of Law
Angie DiPietro is a Maryland criminal defense attorney with an abundance of legal experience dealing with all kinds of criminal offenses. DiPietro graduated cum laude from the University of Baltimore school of law in 1996 and has worked around the Eastern shore of Maryland for much of her career. In addition to being a defense attorney, DiPietro is a panel attorney for the Office of the Public Defender and is one of only four court appointed examiners for Wicomico County. She has also completed training to be a court appointed mediator and is a member of the Wicomico County Bar...
James V. Anthenelli
Claimed Lawyer ProfileSocial Media
Salisbury, MD Criminal Law Lawyer with 42 years experience
(410) 749-3700 134 East Main Street
Salisbury, MD 21801
Criminal, DUI, Traffic Tickets and White Collar Crime
University of Baltimore School of Law and University of Maryland Francis King Carey School of Law
As an AV® Preeminent rated lawyer, Attorney Anthenelli at Anthenelli, Phoebus & Hickman, LLC is committed to providing ethical and professional legal services to residents of Maryland. For over 35 years, this Salisbury criminal defense attorney has succeeded in obtaining highly favorable case results for his clients. His work as a former prosecutor has allowed him to understand both sides of the courtroom. This insight from the vantage point of the prosecution is invaluable. Personally attending to each client, Attorney Anthenelli is committed to providing one-on-one attention as he investigates each case. As a legal advocate included in the list...
Erin Michael McCormack
Claimed Lawyer ProfileSocial Media
Salisbury, MD Criminal Law Attorney with 14 years experience
(443) 742-8330 119 West Main Street
Suite 101
Salisbury, MD 21801
Criminal, Business, DUI and Divorce
University of Baltimore School of Law
Erin Michael McCormack provides a wide range of legal services to clients throughout the Eastern Shore of Maryland with his case load centered in Worcester, Wicomico, Dorchester and Somerset Counties. As a former Assistant State's Attorney and Law Clerk in Worcester County, Mr. McCormack possesses a unique insight into the judicial process facing individuals that find themselves before the Court. Since entering private practice, Mr. McCormack has primarily devoted his time to the areas of criminal defense, traffic matters (DUI/DWI) and civil litigation (business & contract disputes, professional negligence, etc.). Despite those concentrations, he also handles a...
Andrew Melchior MacDonald
Claimed Lawyer ProfileSocial Media
Ocean City, MD Criminal Law Lawyer with 24 years experience
Ocean City, MD 21842
Criminal, Bankruptcy, Estate Planning and Personal Injury
Former Assistant State's Attorney for Wicomico County. Criminal prosecutor for ten years on the Eastern Shore of Maryland. Former judicial law clerk in Wicomico County. 18 years of trial experience in criminal law. Member of the Maryland Criminal Defense Attorney's Association.
Wm A Lee Clarke III
Claimed Lawyer ProfileSocial Media
Salisbury, MD Criminal Law Lawyer with 44 years experience
(410) 219-5899 30644 Brandywine Ct
Salisbury, MD 21804
Free ConsultationCriminal and DUI
University of Baltimore School of Law
Attorney Lee Clarke defends and fights for people accused of crimes, from death penalty murder and other felonies, down to DUI and other misdemeanors, in all Maryland State and Federal Courts; particularly in the Salisbury - Ocean City Maryland area.

Lee Clarke has been selected, by The National Trial Lawyers, as one of the Top 100 Trial Lawyers in Maryland.

Attorney Clarke also represents people, who have been seriously injured in vehicle accidents, on a contingent fee basis.

After graduating magna cum laude, from law school, ranked 8th in a class of 333, and study of International Law, in England, Lee Clarke spent...
Marc Elliot Mandel Esquire
Claimed Lawyer Profile
Newark, MD Criminal Law Lawyer with 19 years experience
8305 Langmaid Road
Newark, MD 21841
Criminal, Administrative, DUI and Real Estate
Princess Anne, MD Criminal Law Attorney with 13 years experience
32552 Dublin Rd
Princess Anne, MD 21853
Criminal, DUI, Divorce and Estate Planning
Salisbury, MD Criminal Law Lawyer with 35 years experience
(410) 341-3939 231 E Main St
Salisbury, MD 21801
Criminal, Bankruptcy, DUI and Personal Injury
Salisbury, MD Criminal Law Attorney with 21 years experience
(410) 749-6052 212 W Main St
Salisbury, MD 21801
Criminal, Business and Personal Injury
Salisbury, MD Criminal Law Lawyer with 24 years experience
(410) 341-7575 110 Baptist St
Salisbury, MD 21801
Criminal, Bankruptcy, Business and DUI
Princess Anne, MD Criminal Law Attorney with 44 years experience
30538 Linden Ave
Princess Anne, MD 21853
Criminal, Bankruptcy and DUI
Albany Law
Thomas Joseph Maronick Jr
Claimed Lawyer ProfileQ&ASocial Media
Ocean City, MD Criminal Law Lawyer with 11 years experience
(800) 491-4291 5000 Coastal Highway
Unit 5
Ocean City, MD 21842
Free ConsultationCriminal, DUI, Divorce and Personal Injury
University of Baltimore School of Law
Thomas Maronick Jr is a Super Lawyers-rated attorney who has been practicing since 2008. A Baltimore native, Mr. Maronick is the founder and managing partner of The Law Office of Thomas Maronick Jr, LLC. Mr. Maronick focuses his practice on criminal defense including DUI defense and handles serious felony cases in state and federal court as well as misdemeanors. He has litigated cases in nearly all of Maryland's counties and federal courthouses. Since becoming a lawyer, Mr. Maronick has been honored with "Superb" ratings from Avvo.com, A+ from BBB, "AV-preeminent from Martindale-Hubbell, their highest rating, and being...
Frank Benvenuto
Claimed Lawyer ProfileLII GoldSocial Media
(410) 641-2999 10031 Old Ocean City Blvd.
Suite 108
Berlin, MD 21811
Free ConsultationBerlin, MD Criminal Law Attorney with 26 years experience
Criminal, DUI and Personal Injury
Widener University Delaware School of Law
The Law firm of Frank Benvenuto, P.A., has been providing criminal defense since 1993. With over 26 years experience, Frank Benvenuto is a skilled trial lawyer who grew up in Ocean City, Maryland. Frank Benvenuto regularly appears in both the District courts in Worcester County (those being Ocean City and Snow Hill District Courts). If you commit a crime in Ocean City usually you go to trial in Ocean City District Court of Maryland. He also appears regularly in the Circuit Court for Worcester County and Wicomico County. Frank handles all kinds of criminal cases: Assaults Affray Disorderly...
Steven William Rakow
Claimed Lawyer ProfileSocial Media
(410) 600-3075 5700 Coastal Hwy
Suite 305
Ocean City, MD 21813
Free ConsultationOcean City, MD Criminal Law Attorney with 23 years experience
Criminal, DUI, Traffic Tickets and White Collar Crime
Salmon P. Chase College of Law, Northern Kentucky University
Over 2 decades of criminal, traffic, and civil litigation experience. Retired Marine Corps lieutenant colonel. Former prosecutor in both Ohio and Maryland. Experienced small business owner.
Julie Marion Guyer
Claimed Lawyer ProfileResponsive Law
Ocean Pines, , MD Criminal Law Lawyer with 11 years experience
(410) 310-3763 11032 Nicholas Lane, Suite A201
Ocean Pines, , MD 21811
Free ConsultationCriminal, Cannabis Law, DUI and Traffic Tickets
I am a retired Maryland State Trooper, and former prosecutor in the Ocean City, Maryland area. I have been an attorney since 2007, and concentrating on the Defense of crimes and driving offenses since 2012.
I will fight for you!
Don't allow your case to impact your life, please give me a call. Free consultation.
Michelle Barnes
Claimed Lawyer Profile
Cambridge, MD Criminal Law Lawyer with 26 years experience
(410) 463-6296 505 Maryland Ave
Cambridge, MD 21613
Criminal, DUI, Personal Injury and Traffic Tickets
University of Baltimore School of Law
Heavyweight Experience in YOUR corner. Michelle has 25 years experience in the courtroom. As a twice elected State's Attorney, 8 years as the Division Chief for the Maryland Attorney General's Office specializing in criminal and environmental matters, and 12 years as a successful criminal defense attorney, Michelle is the one to have in your corner. Michelle practices all over the Eastern Shore of Maryland, as well as Anne Arundel, Prince George's, Baltimore City, and Baltimore Counties, as well as surrounding locations. Offices are based in Cambridge, MD but she can arrange meeting and trial prep rooms...
Harold Stanley Link
Claimed Lawyer Profile
Salisbury, MD Criminal Law Lawyer with 28 years experience
(443) 834-9603 845 Victoria Park Drive
Suite 303
Salisbury, MD 21801-8076
Criminal, DUI, Family and Personal Injury
Ocean City, MD Criminal Law Attorney with 27 years experience
(410) 289-3553 3509 Coastal Hwy
Ocean City, MD 21842
Criminal, Business, DUI and Estate Planning
Cambridge, MD Criminal Law Attorney with 21 years experience
(410) 228-2925 512 Poplar St
Cambridge, MD 21613
Criminal and DUI
Ocean City, MD Criminal Law Lawyer with 15 years experience
(410) 723-1400 6200 Coastal Hwy
Ocean City, MD 21842
Criminal, DUI, Divorce and Estate Planning
Ocean City, MD Criminal Law Lawyer with 25 years experience
(410) 289-3553 3509 Coastal Hwy
Ocean City, MD 21842
Criminal, Business and Insurance Defense
Ocean City, MD Criminal Law Attorney with 47 years experience
(410) 524-1944 115 72nd St
Ocean City, MD 21842
Criminal
Leonard R. Stamm
Claimed Lawyer ProfileBlawgsearchSocial Media
Greenbelt, MD Criminal Law Lawyer with 36 years experience
(800) 256-8172 6301 Ivy Ln
#504
Greenbelt, MD 20770
Free ConsultationCriminal, Appeals, DUI and Juvenile
The Catholic University of America Columbus School of Law
Leonard Stamm is a nationally and locally recognized authority and lecturer in the area of drunk driving defense and Motor Vehicle Administration hearings. He authors Maryland DUI Law, and annually updates Maryland Evidence: State and Federal by Professor Lynn McLain, both published by West-Thomson-Reuters. He is also a Fellow (former Dean) of the National College for DUI Defense. He signed on to an amicus brief in Melendez-Diaz v. Massachusetts, and co-authored amicus briefs in Bullcoming v. New Mexico, Missouri v. McNeely, and Birchfield v. North Dakota. He is a former President of the Maryland Criminal Defense...
Mr. G Randolph Rice Jr.
Claimed Lawyer ProfileBlawgsearchSocial Media
Baltimore, MD Criminal Law Lawyer with 12 years experience
(800) 470-7423 6914 Holabird Avenue
Suite A
Baltimore, MD 21222
Free ConsultationCriminal, DUI, Medical Malpractice and Personal Injury
Loyola University New Orleans
The Law Offices of Randolph Rice provides experienced and trusted legal knowledge and advise to individuals and businesses in the Baltimore Maryland region. Concentrating in the areas of Criminal Defense, DUI/DWI, Personal Injury, Injury Law, Medical Malpractice, Wills, Estates, Domestic Matters. Providing personal service to each client. Handling Drug Crimes, Assault Crimes, Domestic Violence, Driving Violations, Traffic Citations, and all other criminal and traffic charges.
Andrew D. Alpert
Claimed Lawyer ProfileSocial Media
Lexington Park, MD Criminal Law Lawyer with 30 years experience
(301) 321-7277 22776 Three Notch Road, Suite 201
Lexington Park, MD 20653
Free ConsultationCriminal, DUI, Insurance Claims and Personal Injury
The George Washington University Law School
Andrew D. Alpert is a partner with Alpert Schreyer Poe, LLC, a top rated law firm serving all of Maryland. A former prosecutor, Mr. Alpert has successfully represented thousands of individuals charged with Maryland DUI and other criminal offenses including but not limited to theft, weapons charges, drug crimes, assault, burglary and vehicular manslaughter. He is particular adept at representing repeat offenders. Mr. Alpert is also an experienced personal injury attorney who represents Maryland and DC residents injured and/or disabled due to car, truck and motorcycle accidents, boating incidents, and other types of personal injury events. He...
James E Crawford Jr.
Claimed Lawyer ProfileSocial Media
Linthicum, MD Criminal Law Attorney with 27 years experience
(443) 709-9999 999 Corporate Blvd. Suite 100
Linthicum, MD 21090
Free ConsultationCriminal, DUI, Traffic Tickets and White Collar Crime
University of Baltimore School of Law and University of Maryland - Baltimore
Attorney James E. Crawford, Jr.
Founder and Managing Partner
As a Baltimore-native, Attorney James Crawford grew up watching his father interact with some of the best judges and prosecutors in the state, using forcefulness and grace to navigate complex legal situations. He learned that the power to change the life of even one client is worth more than any amount of money or prestige.
As one of the most capable and tenacious trial lawyers in Maryland, he has enjoyed an extraordinary amount of successes on behalf of clients, spending just about every day of his working career in a Maryland courtroom.
The Founding of...
Robert Siegel
Claimed Lawyer Profile
(410) 760-9433 7310 Ritchie Highway
Suite 1001
Glen Burnie, MD 21061
Free ConsultationGlen Burnie, MD Criminal Law Lawyer with 20 years experience
Criminal, Bankruptcy, DUI and Traffic Tickets
University of Baltimore School of Law
Robert A. Siegel is a life-long Maryland resident having grown up in Montgomery County. Robert graduated from the University of Maryland with a Bachelor of Science degree in Accounting. Soon thereafter, Robert passed the CPA exam and gained valuable experience working at a Fortune 500 Company. Not satisfied with a desk job, Robert went back to school to fulfill his childhood dream of becoming a courtroom lawyer. In 1998, Robert graduated Cum Laude from the University of Baltimore School of Law and passed the Bar. The next year, Robert was admitted to practice in the...
Arya Saleh
Claimed Lawyer ProfileSocial Media
Waldorf, MD Criminal Law Lawyer with 10 years experience
(844) 632-7274 8 Post Office Road
Waldorf, MD 20602
Free ConsultationCriminal, DUI and Traffic Tickets
Widener University Delaware School of Law
Arya Saleh, Esq. is an experienced former Assistant State’s Attorney who has prosecuted a diverse array of criminal matters before judges and juries in multiple jurisdictions throughout the State of Maryland.

He began his career as a judicial law clerk for the Montgomery County District Court, working alongside eleven District Court Judges. He was then appointed as an Assistant State’s Attorney for Frederick County, Maryland. He was first assigned to the District Court team, prosecuting thousands of misdemeanor cases, including DUI/traffic cases, drug offenses, domestic violence, and white-collar financial crimes. During this time, he was also designated as Special Prosecutor.

Arya distinguished...
William A. Stavros
Claimed Lawyer ProfileSocial Media
(410) 739-0794 115 Lawyers Row
Centreville, MD 21617
Free ConsultationCentreville, MD Criminal Law Lawyer with 22 years experience
Criminal, DUI, Personal Injury and Traffic Tickets
University of Maryland Francis King Carey School of Law
Admitted to the Maryland Bar in 1996, William A. Stavros has over twenty years of courtroom trial experience and has represented thousands of people in court. He practices in both the State and Federal Courts and is dedicated to protecting the rights and interests of his clients through aggressive and personalized representation. Along with criminal, DUI/DWI and serious traffic matters, Mr. Stavros also accepts personal injury, legal and medical malpractice cases.

William A. Stavros graduated magna cum laude from the University of Maryland, Baltimore County in 1989 with a B.A. in Philosophy. After serving as an intern for Judge John N....
Scott MacMullan
Claimed Lawyer ProfileSocial Media
Annapolis, MD Criminal Law Attorney with 9 years experience
(443) 494-9775 156 South St.
Annapolis, MD 21401
Free ConsultationCriminal, DUI, Domestic Violence and Personal Injury
Widener University
As a native of Anne Arundel County, Scott MacMullan is the owner and founder of Scott MacMullan Law, LLC. His connections to the local community, as well as his background working for two of the preeminent judges in Maryland, give him a unique perspective in court and puts his clients in a premier position as to the facts of their case. He focuses his practice on personal injury and criminal defense matters. He is passionate about helping his clients solve their problems and providing them with the maximum amount of compensation that they are entitled under the law. Call 443-494-9775...
Jamon Brandon Wiggs
Claimed Lawyer ProfileSocial Media
Largo, MD Criminal Law Lawyer with 15 years experience
(240) 545-5544 9701 Apollo Drive
Suite 301
Largo, MD 20774
Criminal, DUI and Traffic Tickets
University of Baltimore School of Law
I am an experienced and dedicated attorney at The Wiggs Law Group. I deliver tough, smart counsel to clients with criminal defense or personal injury needs. My practice areas include criminal defense, personal injury, and also drunk driving, motor vehicle accidents, and traffic tickets. I am passionate about securing justice for the people I represent. I am committed to fighting for my clients' rights.

I have a B.A. in Psychology from Hampton University and a M.B.A. from the University of Baltimore. I earned my J.D. from the University of Baltimore School of Law. I am a member of Prince Georges...
William C. Fanning, Jr.
Claimed Lawyer ProfileSocial Media
La Plata, MD Criminal Law Attorney with 28 years experience
(301) 934-3620 FANNING LAW, LLC
201 Centennial Street, Suite 2-A
La Plata, MD 20646
Criminal, DUI, Divorce and Family
The Catholic University of America Columbus School of Law
Attorney Bill Fanning has focused on family law in Maryland since 1993. He and the staff of Fanning Law, LLC understand the complexities associated with separation, divorce, custody, visitation, and other family law matters and will successfully help you and your family through these difficult issues. With over 20 years of experience handling family disputes, Bill Fanning has an in-depth understanding of the legal and emotional issues which affect you and your family. Looking to grow your family through adoption? Fanning Law, LLC can ably assist you and your family through the adoption process...
Kevin J McDevitt
Claimed Lawyer Profile
Leonardtown, MD Criminal Law Attorney with 15 years experience
(410) 925-8992 22835 Washington St
Leonardtown, MD 20650
Free ConsultationCriminal, DUI and Juvenile
University of Baltimore School of Law
Kevin was listed as one of the Best DUI Lawyers in Maryland on HubPages.com, 2012; National Trial Lawyers Top 100 Criminal Defense Lawyers in Maryland, 2014 & 2015; National Trial Lawyers Top 40 Under 40, 2014 & 2015; Maryland Super Lawyers Rising Stars, 2014 & 2015; and Accepted into National College of DUI Defense (NCDD), 2015; Avvo Clients' Choice, 2016; Avvo 10.0 Superb Rating, 2017.
Thomas Pavlinic
Claimed Lawyer ProfileSocial Media
Annapolis, MD Criminal Law Attorney with 45 years experience
(800) 993-0632 1906 Towne Centre Blvd
#265
Annapolis, MD 21401
Free ConsultationCriminal
The George Washington University Law School
Tom was born and raised in Youngstown, OH. He graduated from the University of Maryland, College Park, MD in 1969 and from George Washington Law School, Washington, DC in 1973. He was admitted to practice in Maryland by the Court of Appeals on December 27, 1973. Since his admission, he has never been the subject of any complaints or disciplinary proceedings. He has a completely unblemished record with the Bar. After law school Tom clerked a year for the Hon. E. Mackall Childs in the Circuit Court for Anne Arundel County, Maryland before spending two years as a staff attorney...
Justin Esworthy
Claimed Lawyer ProfileSocial Media
Annapolis , MD Criminal Law Attorney with 13 years experience
(410) 567-0694 92 Franklin Street
Suite 205
Annapolis , MD 21401
Free ConsultationCriminal, DUI, Traffic Tickets and White Collar Crime
Tulane University School of Law
Justin W. Esworthy is a founding Member of TBH&E with extensive litigation experience, having tried hundreds of cases throughout the State of Maryland, the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, and the Commonwealth of Virginia. Justin has obtained favorable results for both civil and criminal clients through both pre-suit representation as well as trial victories. Prior to law school, Justin studied in Buenos Aires, Argentina and obtained his B.B.A from Hofstra University. He earned his J.D. from Tulane University Law School and then began his law career in the courtroom as an Assistant Public Defender representing clients on charges ranging from minor...
Mr. Jason William Cleckner Esq.
Claimed Lawyer ProfileSocial Media
College Park, MD Criminal Law Lawyer with 13 years experience
(301) 789-1616 9601 Baltimore Avenue
Suite 203
College Park, MD 20740
Free ConsultationCriminal, DUI, Domestic Violence and Traffic Tickets
Syracuse University College of Law
Mr. Cleckner practices exclusively in the areas of criminal defense, traffic defense, and peace and protective order defense. He has never done anything else. Therefore, he focuses all of his extensive court experience on your case to get the best possible outcome. His wife Melanie handles all of the firm's domestic, family and divorce matters.
Ryan Posey
Claimed Lawyer ProfileQ&ASocial Media
(301) 645-4100 11705 Berry Road, Suite 202
Waldorf, MD 20603
Free ConsultationWaldorf, MD Criminal Law Attorney with 5 years experience
Criminal, DUI, Personal Injury and Workers' Comp
University of Baltimore School of Law
Experienced attorney with a concentration in criminal law, personal injury and workers compensation cases. Has litigated cases ranging from simple traffic misdemeanors to serious felonies. Has represented clients throughout Southern Maryland in Charles, Calvert and St. Mary's Counties. Born and raised in Charles County, currently resides in hometown of La Plata, Maryland.
Ryan Christopher Atwell
Claimed Lawyer ProfileSocial Media
Easton, MD Criminal Law Attorney with 19 years experience
(410) 443-0473 21 North Hanson Street
Suite 102
Easton, MD 21601
Criminal, DUI, Divorce and Personal Injury
University of Baltimore School of Law
At the Law Office of Ryan C. Atwell, I strive to be the one attorney you will ever need to handle all of your legal matters.
Lawyer Rating
Years of Experience
Language
Fees
Profile Strength
Criminal Lawyers in Nearby CitiesCriminal Lawyers in Nearby Counties

Arrested or facing criminal charges?

Criminal law addresses the government's prosecution of individuals who have been accused of committing a crime. Such laws may be federal, state, or local. The prosecution represents the people of a particular jurisdiction, and acts on behalf of the government by bringing a case against an accused. Under the U.S. Constitution, a person accused of a crime may have the right to a criminal defense attorney during interrogations and certain other times before and during a trial.

Whether you are under police investigation, have been arrested, or are facing charges, having an advocate familiar with the criminal justice system.

Most jurisdictions classify crimes as felonies or misdemeanors, with felonies being the more serious offenses with the possibility of more severe sentences. Some criminal lawyers focus on a specific area of criminal defense law, such as white-collar crime, drug offenses, theft crimes, or violent crimes. You should consult with a criminal defense lawyer early on in the process to preserve options, such as diversion programs or plea bargains.

When hiring a criminal defense attorney, you should evaluate the experience and fee structure of the attorney. Some offer a free consultation to discuss your case.


Accomplice liability: If a person aids, assists, or encourages another in the commission of a crime, they are criminally liable as an accomplice to the crime.

Self-defense: The claim that an act otherwise criminal was legally justifiable because it was necessary to protect a person or property from the threat or action of another.