If you have been charged with committing a crime in Mt. Holly, it can be a frightening time. Many defendants in criminal cases wonder about the punishments they may receive, the effect the case will have on their relationships with friends and family, and how they will be viewed by current or potential employers.
A criminal conviction can result in a long jail or prison sentence, costly financial damages, and other penalties. For example, depending on the nature and severity of your offense, you may lose your driving privileges, be required to attend a counseling program, or be forced to register as a sex offender. In the future, long after you have fulfilled the requirements of your sentencing, the record of your conviction will remain visible on your criminal history for employers and landlords to view, unless you are able to obtain an expungement.
When you are confronting criminal allegations, your finances, your freedom, and your professional reputation are all at stake. You need a team of experienced Mt. Holly criminal defense attorneys to answer your questions, speak on your behalf, and uphold your legal rights in and out of court. At Young, Marr, Mallis & Associates, our highly qualified criminal defense lawyers have over 25 years of experience representing thousands of clients from Mt. Holly and Burlington County in cases involving charges including:
Assault is an especially common charge in Mt. Holly. At 146 per 100,000, the average assault rate for the state of New Jersey is only 60% of the assault rate for Mt. Holly at 240 per 100,000 by comparison.
But what constitutes assault? Under Title 2C, Chapter 12 of the New Jersey Criminal Code (2C:12-1), assault is broken down into two major subcategories:
- Simple Assault
- Aggravated Assault
Simple assault is the formal term for what is commonly referred to as assault. Chapter 12 defines simple assault as:
- An attempt to knowingly and deliberately cause bodily injury.
- Causing injury through recklessness or negligence.
- Using the threat of physical violence to intimidate or cause fear.
Simple assault is classified as a DP (Disorderly Persons) offense, which is similar to a misdemeanor offense in other states. The maximum penalty for simple assault is:
- $1,000 fine
- 6 months in jail
Aggravated assault is a more serious charge, distinguished from simple assault primarily by the severity of the injuries sustained by the victim, or by the deliberate and knowing use of a deadly weapon. Simple assault on a police officer, firefighter, or judicial employee also constitutes aggravated assault, which is an indictable crime. Maximum penalties include:
- $150,000 fine
- 10 years in prison
DWI (Driving While Intoxicated)
Known as DUI in other jurisdictions, DWI (Driving While Intoxicated) is typically classified as a traffic violation in New Jersey. However, despite this lesser categorization, a DWI conviction will result in jail time, expensive fines, and license suspensions. Furthermore, if a DWI results in injury or death, the DWI becomes an indictable crime with felony status and increased penalties.
Important facts to know about DWI:
- DWI isn’t limited to drunk driving. Driving while impaired by drugs is also a DWI offense.
- If your BAC (Blood Alcohol Content) meets or exceeds 0.10%, the penalties increase.
- If you are a commercial driver, the BAC threshold drops from 0.08% to 0.04%.
- Refusing to submit to a breathalyzer test can result in consequences similar to an actual DWI.
Penalties for a New Jersey DWI with a BAC of 0.08%-0.99% include:
- $400 fine
- 30 days in jail
- 3 month license suspension
If the BAC increases to 0.10% or greater, the consequences become harsher:
- $500 fine
- 30 days in jail
- 7 months-1 year license suspension
Mt. Holly has been implementing changes to the way that narcotics are handled by local law enforcement. According to the 2012 Annual Report issued by the Burlington County Prosecutor’s Office, the Mt. Holly Police Department has been working with the Gang, Gun, and Narcotics Task Force (GGNTF) to target drug dealers operating near school zones, leading to arrests for crack cocaine, marijuana, and various pills.
Drug charges can pertain to matters like the transportation or cultivation of scheduled substances, but most commonly, narcotics charges involve either:
- Simple Possession
- Possession with the Intent to Distribute
Simple possession refers to possession for personal use only. The severity of a simple possession offense depends upon factors like the type, schedule, and quantity of drug. For example, under N.J.S.A. 2C:35-10a4, simple possession of marijuana can result in:
- $15,000 fine
- 18 months in prison
However, under N.J.S.A. 2C:35-10, the penalties are different for other drugs. Simple possession of heroin, methamphetamine, cocaine, LSD, or ecstasy can result in:
- $25,000 fine
- 5 years in prison
As with simple possession, fines and incarceration terms for possession with intent to distribute vary depending on type and amount of substance. Under N.J.S.A. 2C:35-5b(10)-(12), the penalties for intent to distribute more than one ounce but less than five pounds of marijuana include:
- $25,000 fine
- 5 years in prison
The fines and prison sentences for narcotics like LSD and heroin are even harsher.
If you or someone you love has been charged with committing a crime, it is not in your best interests to defend yourself against a trained prosecuting attorney. You need the assistance of an aggressive and experienced Mt. Holly criminal defense attorney with years of legal expertise to help you. To schedule a free and confidential consultation with a Mt. Holly criminal defense lawyer, call the law offices of Young, Marr, Mallis & Associates at (609) 755-3115 in New Jersey or (215) 701-6519 in Pennsylvania, or contact us online to get started.