CRIMINAL DEFENSE / Caroline G. Donato
CRIMINAL DEFENSE / Caroline G. Donato

Caroline G. Donato


Ms. Donato focuses her practice on federal and state criminal defense and related civil and administrative matters at both the trial and appellate level. Whether as part of a team or as lead counsel, Ms. Donato brings energetic dedication to providing effective, results oriented representation for each client.


Before joining MacElree Harvey, Ms. Donato clerked for a criminal defense practice in Wilmington, Delaware. She was also a law clerk for the Office of the Federal Public Defender for the District of Delaware, a certified legal intern for the Chester County District Attorney’s Office, a News Department Intern for CBS Philadelphia, a legal assistant to several criminal defense attorneys throughout Pennsylvania, and a Public Policy Intern at the University of Pittsburgh Institute of Politics.


  • Widener University School of Law, J.D.
  • University of Pittsburgh, B.A.


  • Pennsylvania
  • New Jersey
  • Eastern District of Pennsylvania
  • Supreme Court of the United States

Notable Representations

  • Successfully resolved felony allegations of aggravated assault and strangulation
  • Dismissal of PWID felony charges
  • Client acquitted by a jury of rape and related charges after a week-long jury trial
  • Proper and timely responses to various federal civil and administrative subpoenas for document production
  • Appeals before the Commonwealth Court for CYF Indicated and Founded Reports of child abuse
  • DUI appeal before the Superior Court of Pennsylvania
  • Success in Sexually Violent Predator sentencing
  • Success in PennDOT license suspension appeals
  • Success in defending Driving Under Suspension allegations
  • PFA defense and successful resolution of related Indirect Criminal Contempt
  • Successful suppression of statement and related search following the seizure of drug paraphernalia
  • Dismissal of theft allegations
  • Successful resolution of DUI charges and related unlawful searches
  • Favorable dispositions for clients accused of sex offenses and/or violent offenses
  • Favorable dispositions for clients charged with summary criminal and traffic offenses
  • Representation of state and federal grand jury witnesses


  • Pennsylvania Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers (PACDL)
    • New Lawyers Committee (2016-present), Chair (2018-present)
    • CLE Committee (2017-present)
  • National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers (2014-present)
  • Chester County Bar Association (2014-present)
  • Pennsylvania Bar Association (2014-present)
  • American Bar Association (2014-present)
  • Chester County Chamber of Business and Industry, Women Influencing Business Committee (2014-present)


  • Chester County Chamber of Business & Industry, 2019 Rising Star of the Year
  • Main Line Today, Top Lawyer, 2015 – 2019
  • Pennsylvania Super Lawyers, Rising Star, 2018-2019
Caroline G. Donato, Criminal Defense Attorney