Domestic Violence Lawyer in Middletown, NJ

Charged with Domestic Violence in Middletown NJ?

Disputes between loved ones are almost inevitable, that is just a part of life. However, when the disputes get out of hand and escalate, things can quickly go from bad to worse. New Jersey as a whole but especially Monmouth County takes domestic violence allegations very seriously and they tend to be prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law.  As you will see below, domestic violence incidents can lead to one or both of the parties being charged criminally as well as being issued a temporary restraining order. These are two separate matters, that are litigated in two separate forums and they carry with them equally as devastating consequences. To make matters worse, if the someone is arrested and charged with a criminal offense that is classified as an “act of domestic violence” they could themselves being detained for at least 24 hours in the Monmouth County Jail pending a possible detention hearing. For more information on Detention Hearings in Monmouth County, please see below.

Need Local Lawyer for Domestic Violence Charge in Middletown

What started out as a misunderstanding can turn into an absolute nightmare in a heartbeat. If you have been charged with an act of domestic violence or served with a restraining order in Middletown we urge you to contact an experienced criminal defense lawyer as soon as possible. Understanding your rights, your options and the potential consequences is absolutely crucial when it comes to these types of cases. At Keith Oliver Criminal Law, we fully comprehend the stress and anxiety that most feel when they are taken into custody and as such, we are dedicated to do everything in our power to aggressively defend the allegations. If you would like to speak to one of our Middletown domestic violence defense attorneys today, then please contact our office at 732.858.6959. Our office is located directly across the street from the Middletown Municipal Court and Police Station. As always, our initial consultations are free of costs, so if you have any questions whatsoever, please do not hesitate to contact us.

Served with a Restraining Order in Middletown?

temporary restraining order (TRO) in New Jersey is temporary in nature. Once a TRO is granted, a final restraining order (FRO) must be scheduled. During this hearing the victim, often referred to as the “plaintiff” will have the burden of establishing by a preponderance of the evidence the following:

  1. That they qualify as a “victim” under New Jersey Domestic Violence Prevention Act (see directly below);
    Ex. Spouse; Former Spouse; Child in Common; Dating Relationship; Former Household Members
  2. That they are the victim of an act of domestic violence (see directly below) at the hands of the Defendant:
    Ex. Homicide, Assault, Terroristic Threat, Harassment, Stalking, False Imprisonment, Sexual Assault, Kidnapping, Criminal Mischief, Burglary, Criminal Sexual Contact, Lewdness, Criminal Coercion, Criminal Trespassing.
  3. That in order to protect their safety or prevent future acts of domestic violence, a final order of protection is necessary.

In order to establish their burden, the plaintiff will be required to testify in open court, present witnesses and put-forth any other evidence they may have to support their position. Some of the main pieces of evidence produced during a final restraining order hearing is text messages, emails, photos and phone records. In addition, since they are testifying, they will be subject to cross-examination by defense counsel. Also, the defendant is allowed to put-forth any evidence and witnesses, including themselves to defend the allegations. This is other words a mini trial, whereby each party will be required to abide by the rules of evidence. These hearings are typically very involved and emotional, as such we strongly suggest speaking to any attorney prior to appearing in court. Lastly, although the incident may have occurred in Middletown, the restraining order hearing will take place in the Monmouth County Superior Court, Chancery Division, Family Part which is located in Freehold.

For more information on What to Expect at a Restraining Order Hearing in Monmouth County, please click the link. 

Arrested for Domestic Violence in Middletown?

In order for the incident to be classified as an act of domestic violence, the victim must first qualify as a victim of domestic violence under the New Jersey Domestic Violence Prevent Act. To garner the protections under the New Jersey Domestic Violence Prevention Act, the victim must satisfy one of the following:

  • A present or former household member of the Defendant; or
  • Has or is expecting to have a child in common with the Defendant; or
  • Currently/Previously in a dating relationship with the Defendant.

If the individual qualifies as a victim of domestic violence, then anyone of the following crimes listed below will be classified as act of domestic violence:

  • Homicide, Assault, Terroristic Threat, Harassment, Stalking, False Imprisonment, Sexual Assault, Kidnapping, Criminal Mischief, Burglary, Criminal Sexual Contact, Lewdness, Criminal Coercion, Criminal Trespassing.

If the crime is considered an indictable offense (felony) then the case will be transferred to the Monmouth County Superior Court, Criminal Division for disposition. Some of the most common indictable domestic violence crimes include: Aggravated Assault, Terroristic Threats, Stalking, Sexual Assault, Cyber-Harassment and Criminal Sexual Contact.

However, if the offense is considered a disorderly persons offense (misdemeanor) then the case will be litigated in the Middletown Municipal Court for disposition. Some of the most common domestic violence disorderly persons offenses include: Simple Assault, Harassment, Criminal Trespassing and Criminal Mischief.

What is the Bail for Domestic Violence Charge?

If the incident is classified as an act of domestic violence it will more likely than not be required to be issued on what is known as a warrant status. This means that the individual must be taken down to the Monmouth County Jail so that pretrial services can conduct their interview and determine whether or not the recommend that the individual be released on bail or not. Based on their recommendation, the prosecution will need to determine whether or not they will file for detention. If they file for detention, a formal detention hearing must take place, whereby it will be the prosecution’s burden to convince the Judge that the individual must be detained, without bail pending trial. These hearing can and always should be contested.

For more information on Detention Hearings on Domestic Violence Charges in Monmouth County, please click the link. 

Talk to an Experienced Domestic Violence Lawyer in Middletown, NJ Today

Keith Oliver Criminal Law is a Monmouth County based criminal defense firm that is located directly across the street from the Middletown Municipal Complex, which houses both the courthouse and police department. Our office has extensive experience dealing with domestic violence allegations in Middletown. If you would like to set up a free initial consultation today, please contact us directly at 732.858.6959 or you can try contacting us online. These are extremely serious matters and should not be taken lightly. Please do not make the mistake of underestimating the potential ramifications of domestic violence charges.