20 years of courtroom experience
Assistant District Attorney, Allegheny County 1999 – 2006
Owner of The Law Offices of George Heym 2006 – present
Listed as one of the Top 100 Trial Lawyers by the National Trial Lawyers Assoc.
Awarded 10 Best Law Firm for client satisfaction 3 years running by American Institute of DUI/DWI Attorneys
Ranked 10.0 – Top Attorney by avvo.com
George Heym and his wife are raising their children right here in Allegheny County
George grew up in Pittsburgh
He attended Duquesne University
He attended University of Pittsburgh School of Law
He has practiced Law in Allegheny County for 20 years
Every victim of sexual assault deserves to be heard! I served as an Assistant District Attorney in the Allegheny County District Attorney’s Office from 1999 through 2006. For the last three years of my tenure with that office I was assigned to the Child Abuse unit prosecuting mostly sexual assault cases. Since that time I have spent nearly every day in court as a DUI defense attorney.
In watching the hearings, and surrounding publicity, regarding the confirmation of Judge Brett Kavanaugh I was struck by the fact that the political process had negatively changed the discussion about sexual assault in this country. Many argued that the sexual assault allegation raised by Dr. Ford, Ms. Ramirez and others were “unsubstantiated” and that there was no “corroborating evidence”. When and how did sexual assault become a partisan political issue? I am frustrated that this has become the new narrative in which sexual assault is discussed and analyzed in this country.
Frankly, the results of the FBI investigation into the allegations are irrelevant. Until the mid 1970’s state rape statutes across the country actually required “corroborating evidence” to sustain a conviction and many states also required a “prompt complaint” for an attacker to be prosecuted. Around that time, it was recognized that those requirements were not realistic and did nothing more than protect sexual predators from prosecution. Thus, the current law in Pennsylvania is that a defendant may be convicted based upon the victim’s testimony alone. I personally prosecuted, and convicted, many predators based solely upon the victim’s testimony.
After this confirmation process the public now speaks of “corroboration” as if it were a requirement when it is not. The effect of this change of narrative is that future sexual assault victims will be even less likely to speak up. Why bother when there may not be “corroborating evidence” and they have been taught that no one will believe them. As a former sexual assault prosecutor this frightens me. As the father of my 12 year old daughter I am terrified that she will grow up in a world which discusses sexual assault in this manner.
Criminal Justice Reform
In the criminal Justice system there is a balance between punishment and rehabilitation. For too long, the criminal justice system in this country has inappropriately leaned heavily to the side of punishment. Many of those who are charged with crimes need help not incarceration. This is why I believe that programs that address substance abuse, veteran’s issues and counseling are so important. My goal as a Judge would not be to incarcerate as many as possible but instead to require treatment for as many defendants as possible. Far too many people are incarcerated in this country for minor offenses that could be dealt with in an alternative manner.
Finally, I believe that all victims, defendants and witnesses should be treated with respect no matter their race, religion or sexual orientation.
Therefore, I am running for the position of Judge of Common Pleas Court where I can assure that all victims of sexual assault have the right to be heard and to seek justice and that all who appear before me are treated fairly and with respect.
Please register and come out to vote on May 14, 2019. Together we can ensure that the criminal justice system is fair for all!