Facing an Assault Charge in Freehold New Jersey
Have you been placed under arrest for assault in Freehold? Were you hauled off to the Monmouth County Jail? If so, you are not alone. Since bail reform was initiated back in 2017, the number of individuals logged in the local county jail based on assault charges, even simple assault charges have sky rocketed. Outside of the obvious situation where the underlying facts are so egregious, one of the main ways in which an individual finds themselves being hauled off to the county jail is if the incident is classified as an “act of domestic violence“. If that is to occur, then the individual must be taken to the county jail pending pretrial services investigation. This usually occurs within twenty-four (24) hours, however, the Monmouth County Prosecutor’s could seek to file for a formal detention hearing based on their analysis of the case. If that is to occur, the individual must be detained until a formal hearing can be conducted, whereby the Judge will be called upon to decide whether the individual could be released on bail or must be detained pending trail. Keep in mind, all of this occurs quickly, usually within the first week of being arrested and this has nothing to do with dealing with the underlying charges, which based on the charges could land an individual behind bars for a decade.
Need to Consult with a Local Lawyer for Assault Charge in Freehold NJ
In addition to the criminal aspect of an assault allegation, if the incident is classified as an act of domestic violence, the alleged victim in the case has the right to seek an order of protection, which is known as a temporary restraining order. This is separate and apart and carries with it, its own potential devastating consequences. If you or a loved one has been accused of assaulting another in Freehold, we strongly urge that you contact an experienced criminal defense attorney immediately. Understanding your options and the potential consequences is absolutely crucial when it comes to dealing with these types of charges. To speak to one of our Freehold assault defense attorneys today, please contact our Freehold office at 732.858.6959. One of our attorneys would be glad to discuss the specifics of your case and formulate a game plan that works best to suit your needs. Now here is some more information on potential assault charges, including the penalties if convicted.
Where Do I Appear for a Simple Assault Charge in Freehold?
Anyone arrested and charged with simple assault in Freehold, whether it be in the Borough or the Township, will be directed to appear in the local municipal court to answer for the charges. The Freehold Township Municipal Court is located at One Municipal Plaza. Court will be held by the Honorable Nicole L. Sonnenblick, J.M.C. every Tuesday and Wednesday at 8 am and 1 pm. The State will be represented by Anthony J. Vecchio, Esq. Conversely, the Freehold Borough Municipal Court is located at 38 Jackson Street and their court will be held every Tuesday at 1 and 4pm. The Honorable Scott J. Basen, J.M.C. is the presiding judge and Brian Wilton, Esq. will be representing the State. Simple assault, which is governed by NJSA 2C:12-1, is a disorderly persons offense, which is referred to as a misdemeanor. Although this is the lowest level assault charge in New Jersey, if convicted, the individual will be facing up to six months in jail, a $1,000 fine, community service and court ordered anger management. As you can see, not something to take lightly. For more information on simple assault charges in New Jersey, including possible defense, please click the link.
Is Aggravated Assault Considered a Felony in NJ?
Aggravated assault charges are always considered felony offenses in New Jersey, regardless of whether the individual is charged with third degree aggravated assault, aggravated assault with a deadly weapon, assault by auto or aggravated assault on a police officer. As one would imagine, the potential for a lengthy prison term drastically increases when the individual is facing sentencing on a felony offense. There are many different subsections to the aggravated assault statute in New Jersey but the underlying degree is typically determined by looking at the injury caused or attempted to be caused and the status of the victim (i.e. police officer). Depending on the degree of the aggravated assault charge, an individual could be facing up to a decade behind bars as well as up to a $150,000 fine. For more information on aggravated assault charges in New Jersey, please click the above corresponding links.
As of July of 2021, the legislature has increased strangulation charges from a third to a second degree felony if the alleged victim is considered a protected party pursuant to New Jersey’s Domestic Violence Prevention Act.
Issued a Restraining Order Based on an Assault Case in Freehold
As touched upon above, if the assault is classified as an act of domestic violence then the case would fall under New Jersey Domestic Violence Prevention Act, which would allow for the victim to file for a temporary restraining order (TRO). If a TRO is granted then the individual will be forced to appear in the Family Part of the Chancery Division of the Monmouth County Superior Court for a Final Restraining Order (FRO) hearing. At the FRO hearing it will be the victims burden to establish by a preponderance of the evidence that they are the victim of an act of domestic violence and that in order to prevent further acts of domestic violence, a final order of protection is necessary. A final restraining order can have just as devastating consequences as the underlying criminal assault charge. For more information on Restraining Orders, including how to defend a restraining order in Freehold, please click the link.
How to Post Bail for an Assault Case in Freehold Township
In 2017 New Jersey’s bail system underwent a major overhaul. We have basically abolished the ability for a loved one to appear in the precinct, post a cash bail and secure the release of the defendant. The new bail system is centered around a risk assessment that is conducted by Pretrial Services. Once a defendant is taken into custody on an assault charge that was issued on a Complaint-Warrant, they must be taken from the local police station to the Monmouth County Jail for at least 24 to 48 hours. Once at the county jail, Pretrial Services will conduct their risk assessment. Once that assessment is complete, the defendant will be scheduled for their Central Judicial Processing Hearing (CJP). At their CJP hearing they will be advised whether the prosecution is agreeing to release them on conditions or whether they will be seeking to keep them detained in the Monmouth County Jail, without bail, pending trial. In order for them to secure the defendant’s detention, the prosecution must file for a formal detention hearing. At that hearing, the Judge will need to determine whether or not to release the defendant. It will be the prosecutions burden to establish by clear and convincing evidence that there are no amount of bail conditions that will assure:
- The defendant’s appearance in court when required;
- That the defendant will not pose a danger to any other person or the community; and/or
- That the defendant will not obstruct or attempt to obstruct justice, or threaten, injure, or intimidate, or attempt to threaten, injure, or intimidate, a prospective witness or juror.
Need to Speak to a Local Attorney about Simple Assault Case in Freehold
As you can tell from reading above, being charged with an assault crime in Freehold is not something to take lightly. The potential penalties can be absolutely crippling. To set up a free initial consultation today with one of the Freehold domestic violence defense attorneys at Keith Oliver Criminal Law, please contact our Freehold office at 732.858.6959. As always, our initial consultations are free of costs, so if you have any questions whatsoever, please do not hesitate to call.