Sunday, January 27, 2013
When Juveniles May Be Tried As Adults in NJ
Most NJ juvenile matters are under the jurisdiction of the Family Court. Upon satisfaction of the probable cause standard, prosecutors can obtain waiver of juveniles 14 or older to adult court if the juveniles commit certain enumerated crimes. In the case of juveniles ages 16 and 17, there is no right to present evidence of a reasonable prospect of rehabilitation outweighing the reasons supporting waiver to an adult trial. In a recent case in which juveniles seeking revenge were charged with murder, aggravated assault, conspiracy and attempted murder were fighting transfer from the Family Part to adult court, probable cause under the waiver statute was re-affirmed by the court as "a well-grounded suspicion or belief that the juvenile committed the alleged crime. " The court further held that if the state presents evidence, with reasonable inferences, that leads to a well-grounded suspicion that the juvenile committed one of the enumerated crimes then the probable cause for waiver standard is satisfied and the juvenile's matter may be transferred to an adult trial. Juvenile matters are extremely sensitive in nature as they may result in a criminal record which destroys the hope of certain educational and employment opportunities for the remainder of the juvenile's life. If your son or daughter is facing criminal charges, you should consult an experienced criminal law attorney immediately in order to protect your rights. For more information on juvenile criminal matters including municipal court matters in New Jersey visit HeatherDarlingLawyer.com. This blog is for informational purposes only and in no way intended to replace the advice of an attorney regarding your specific matter.