Telephone: (732) 544-1460
Fax: (732) 544-1462

Essex County Criminal Lawyers Blog

NJ Juvenile Delinquency Law: Change Is on the Way

Posted by Leslie Posnock on August 14, 2015  |   No Comments »

New NJ Juvenile justice legislation, signed by the Governor on August 10, 2015, will go into effect in seven months. The new law will greatly expand the rights of juveniles charged with criminal offenses, and will, hopefully, assist in their rehabilitation.

Under the new law, 14 year olds can no longer be prosecuted in the adult courts, and children 15 and above can only be transferred to the adult courts for the most serious crimes. The law would, in most cases, prohibit the jailing of juveniles in adult facilities until they are at least 18, instead of the current 16. Some juveniles who have been convicted as adults could be allowed to remain in juvenile facilities until the age of 21.

The measure will allow juveniles jailed on adult charges prior to trial to be detained in juvenile, rather than adult facilities.

Prosecutors, who previously had 30 days to decide whether to apply for transfer of a juvenile’s case to adult court, will now have 60 days to make that determination, and must, prior to that application, provide the court with a written analysis of their reasons for seeking waiver. The State is also required to explain why treatment as an adult is appropriate. The Court has the right to deny the application after analyzing the request. This is a significant improvement over the current law.

The new law also significantly limits the circumstances under which a juvenile may be held in solitary confinement. No juvenile can be placed in solitary confinement unless he or she poses an immediate threat to others or to the security of the facility. Other restrictive measures must first be utilized. Further, every case where solitary confinement is imposed must be strictly documented, and the time a juvenile can be so held is limited.

This bill was created with the input of retired judges, juvenile justice experts, county prosecutors, the Attorney General’s Office and the New Jersey State Bar Association.

If your child faces juvenile prosecution or sentencing in the Family or Municipal Courts of New Jersey, or if the State seeks to have your child’s case transferred to the adult criminal courts, it is critical to have an experienced New Jersey juvenile court attorney represent you. The experienced juvenile delinquency lawyers of Schwartz & Posnock appear in all State and Municipal criminal courts in New Jersey, and have convenient locations in Monmouth County (Eatontown), Essex County (Livingston), Union County (Linden), and Middlesex County (East Brunswick). Call us at 732-544-1460 or email us at info@schwartzposnock.com to schedule an appointment.

Contacted by the Police? Call an Experienced NJ Criminal Lawyer

Posted by Leslie Posnock on July 2, 2015  |   No Comments »

As criminal defense attorneys, our first call from a prospective client often occurs after he or she has been contacted by a detective. When an individual is called by a detective or law enforcement investigator to come down to the police department, it typically signals that that individual is going to be charged with a crime. Detectives are usually very good at downplaying the true state of affairs in order to lure an individual to the station and provide a statement. In 99 times out of 100, an individual who gives a statement ends up being charged and arrested while at the police department, after the statement is signed and placed in the investigator’s evidence folder.

It is extremely rare for an individual to talk a detective or an investigator out of charging him with a crime when he has been asked to go to a police station to “give his side of the story.” In virtually every case, the police have already decided to charge that individual and do so as soon as they are done taking the statement.

Our firm recommends to all potential clients and existing clients that they forgo any voluntary appearance at a police station to provide information to a law enforcement officer. It does not matter if any potential statement is signed, tape recorded, video taped or verbal (in which case the police officer will make file notes capsulizing what was said). Providing this information is unnecessary and almost never serves to protect the individual’s rights. It may, instead, provide that last bit of information required to bring a criminal charge.

Instead of meeting with the authorities on your own, we recommend that you allow our lawyers to contact the detective to discuss the parameter of the investigations and to determine what the detective wants to know and whether or not he or she is considering bringing charges against you. We can then advise you as to the best course of action to take.

If we learn that you will be charged with an offense, we will make arrangements for you to voluntarily surrender – with a lawyer at your side – after negotiating the terms of such release. We will also reaffirm to the police that you will invoke your Miranda and Fifth Amendment rights to remain silent and will make no statement.

For individuals who are facing state criminal prosecution or sentencing in the criminal courts of New Jersey, federal criminal prosecution or sentencing in the United States District Court for the District of New Jersey, or who are appealing their criminal matters before the New Jersey Appellate Division, the Supreme Court of New Jersey, or the United States Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit, it is critical to have an experienced state and federal New Jersey criminal defense attorney represent you. The experienced criminal defense lawyers of Schwartz & Posnock appear in all State and Municipal criminal courts in New Jersey, as well as in the New Jersey Federal Courts, and have convenient locations in Monmouth County (Eatontown), Essex County (Livingston), Union County (Linden), and Middlesex County (East Brunswick). Call us at 732-544-1460 or email us at info@schwartzposnock.com to schedule an appointment.

Federal Criminal Law Update: Should I Proffer Evidence to Federal Prosecutors in a NJ Federal Criminal Case?

Posted by Leslie Posnock on March 30, 2015  |   No Comments »

Many of our clients who are investigated for or charged with a federal criminal offense want to know whether they should attend a proffer session in a federal criminal case. In particular, they want to know whether, by providing the United States Attorney’s Office with information about criminal activity, they can avoid being criminally charged, reduce the severity of any charges, or face a lesser sentence if charged with a NJ federal criminal offense. Additionally, our clients ask whether they are protected from future prosecution based on information they provide in the proffer session.

Whether you attend a proffer session in a federal criminal case is a decision which should be made by you and your criminal defense attorney after careful consideration of the potential risks and rewards of giving a proffer.

If by proffering you convince the government that you either have not committed an offense or that the proof is insufficient to convict you, a proffer session may have been the wisest choice to be made in the case. On the other hand, the risks of proffering are real. A proffer agreement provides very little protection for you. We would be happy to discuss all of the risks and rewards of participating in a proffer session should you unfortunately find yourself uder federal criminal investigation.

For more detailed information on whether a proffer agreement is right for you, click below to see our articles entitled:

Proffer Letter Example  

A Primer On Whether to Proffer in a Federal Criminal Case

The experienced federal criminal defense lawyers of Schwartz & Posnock appear in all Federal Courts of New Jersey, as well as the State and Municipal criminal courts in New Jersey, and have convenient locations in Monmouth County (Eatontown), Essex County (Livingston), Union County (Linden), and Middlesex County (East Brunswick). Call us at 732-544-1460 or email us at info@schwartzposnock.com to schedule an appointment. We look forward to obtaining a positive outcome of your case.

  • Follow Us