Northfield, NJ Criminal Defense Lawyer

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    The last thing anyone wants is to be in need of a criminal defense attorney. Being charged with a crime can be one of the most intimidating and frightening experiences of a person’s life. The criminal justice process is often very complicated, confusing, and lengthy. Trials have been known to drag on for months at a time before finally being resolved. It is crucial that you seek a qualified attorney’s assistance to help you throughout the criminal justice process.

    An attorney will have the skills and knowledge to advocate on your behalf in a court of law. There are many different stages and phases of the trial process with their own set of rules to follow. A lawyer can help you navigate this process and get you the best possible outcome.

    If you have been charged with any crime in New Jersey, call our Northfield, NJ criminal defense lawyer at the Law Offices of John J. Zarych at (609) 616-4956. Schedule a free legal consultation with our experienced attorney and legal team.

    Being Charged with a Crime in Northfield, NJ

    Many other states use the terms “felony” and “misdemeanor” to describe criminal charges. Generally, misdemeanors are somewhat less serious offenses punishable by up to a year in jail. Felonies tend to be more serious and may come with much longer prison terms. New Jersey is a bit different and does not use these terms. Instead, we refer to different offenses as disorderly persons offenses and crimes.

    A disorderly person offense is a lower-level offense that typically comes with a less harsh punishment. Disorderly persons offenses are often punished by fines and very brief prison terms. A petty disorderly persons offense is even less serious and is typically penalized with only fines. In New Jersey, defendants charged with a disorderly persons offense have no right to a grand jury or a trial by jury. Additionally, the legal disadvantages of having a crime on your record are not present in disorderly persons offenses cases. These offenses are not considered crimes under the New Jersey Constitution.

    New Jersey uses the term “crime” to describe an offense punishable by more than 6 months in prison. Crimes are further broken down into first-degree, second-degree, third-degree, and fourth-degree crimes. Fourth-degree crimes are the least serious of the three categories, and first-degree crimes are the most serious. Each degree of crime comes with a different level of penalties. If you have been charged with a crime or a disorderly persons offense, contact our Northfield, NJ criminal defense lawyer for help.

    Penalties for Crimes Committed in Northfield, NJ

    Each degree of crime has a different range of penalties that may be imposed upon conviction. Generally, fourth-degree crimes can be punished by no more than 18 months in prison. Third-degree crimes may be punished with a prison term from 3 to 5 years. Second-degree crimes are punishable by a prison term of 5 to 10 years. Finally, first-degree crimes carry penalties of 10 to 20 years in prison.

    These penalties are only the starting point a court uses when determining what punishment to impose. Under certain circumstances, a defendant’s penalties may be enhanced if specific conditions are present. For example, defendants convicted of certain crimes of domestic violence may face higher mandatory minimum sentences, which means their penalty could be closer to 20 years in prison rather than 10 years if their crime is of the first-degree. Please consult with our Northfield, NJ criminal defense lawyer about your charges and allow us to help your case.

    What Happens if I am Arrested in Northfield, NJ?

    Before you are formally charged with any crime, you will probably be arrested by the police. The police need to have a valid arrest warrant to place you under arrest. The warrant must be based on sufficient probable cause that demonstrates you likely committed a crime and be issued by a judge or magistrate. Once the police have a warrant, they may track you down and arrest you.

    An arrest warrant is not always necessary for the police to execute an arrest. If the police are called to a crime scene and witness you commit the crime, they do not need a warrant to arrest you. Instead, they can arrest you right away at the scene. Even if the police do not witness you commit the crime, if they find probable cause to show you probably committed the crime and may be dangerous, they can arrest you. If you have been arrested for a crime in New Jersey, reach out to our Northfield, NJ criminal defense attorney for assistance.

    Going to Trial for a Crime in Northfield, NJ

    Every defendant who goes to trial has certain trial rights that the government cannot infringe upon. These include, but are not limited to, the right to an attorney and the right to a jury trial. While every defendant has a right to a trial by a jury of their peers, you have the option of waiving this right in favor of what is known as a bench trial. A bench trial is one where the judge acts as the jury and ultimately decides the verdict. The right to an attorney is crucial to your case because the trial process can be long and complicated. You will need an attorney who has the skills and experience to advocate on your behalf and defend your rights.

    Believe it or not, you do not always have to go through a trial. Prosecutors frequently offer plea deals or plea bargains to defendants. These deals allow a defendant to potentially reduce their charges and penalties in exchange for pleading guilty and waiving their right to a trial. Many cases are resolved this way. If every case went to trial, the criminal justice system would become so backlogged that it would come to a complete stop. To determine if a plea deal is right for you, or for help negotiating a better plea deal, contact our Northfield, NJ criminal defense attorney.

    Types of Cases Our Firm Can Handle in Northfield, NJ

    If you were arrested in Northfield, then our criminal defense lawyers can likely offer support when fighting to have your charge reduced or eliminated. For instance, we can offer guidance to defendants in any of the following types of cases:

    Assault Cases

    In the realm of assault charges, there exist three primary categories that one may find themselves facing. These encompass charges related to assault by auto, simple assault, and aggravated assault. Convictions for these offenses can result in a range of consequences, including incarceration, substantial fines, mandated counseling, and community service directed by the court.

    Drug Crime Cases

    Within the domain of drug-related offenses, there are various potential charges that individuals could confront in New Jersey. These allegations may involve accusations of possessing, transporting, distributing, or manufacturing narcotics. The potential penalties for these violations can differ significantly, often correlating with the quantity of drugs involved. Larger quantities of drugs could potentially lead to more severe consequences under the law.

    Weapons Crime Cases

    Similarly, akin to drug-related charges, weapons-related offenses encompass a diverse array of potential accusations. Individuals may find themselves charged with unlawful possession, concealment, or transportation of firearms. Additionally, allegations such as armed robbery, negligent discharge, or improper firearm sales may arise. The complexity of firearm ownership laws in New Jersey is noteworthy, especially considering ongoing legislative efforts to introduce further restrictions. With evolving regulations and potential legal challenges, adept legal representation becomes indispensable in formulating an effective defense strategy for weapons-related charges.

    Domestic Violence Cases

    Navigating accusations of domestic violence necessitates skillful legal assistance. Domestic violence encompasses a spectrum of violent, abusive, coercive, or threatening actions occurring between family members. Aside from criminal repercussions, which may involve significant fines and imprisonment, such allegations can profoundly disrupt personal lives and relationships. A robust defense is essential to address the complexities of these cases and mitigate potential consequences.

    Record Expungements

    The lingering impact of a criminal record post-penalty completion can impede various life aspirations. Challenges may arise when seeking employment, housing, or forming social connections. The remedy of expungement offers the possibility to seal certain criminal records from public view. Delving into the process of record expungement, our legal team conducts thorough assessments to determine the eligibility and potential for sealing criminal records, thereby affording individuals a fresh start.

    Resisting Arrest Cases

    Charges of resisting arrest encompass a range of behaviors that defy police directives. Actions such as striking an officer, evading restraint, or obstructing law enforcement can lead to such accusations. Even behaviors like spitting at an officer or failing to comply during a traffic stop can result in charges. The penalties for resisting arrest hinge on various contextual factors, underscoring the need for tailored defense strategies to address the unique circumstances surrounding each case.

    Drunk Driving Cases

    Driving While Intoxicated (DWI) charges are serious offenses in New Jersey, carrying substantial repercussions. Convictions may entail imprisonment, steep fines, and driver’s license suspension. Constructing a formidable defense against DWI charges is paramount, as potential avenues for exoneration or charge dismissal may exist for those wrongly accused.

    Juvenile Cases

    Our legal team extends its expertise to juvenile defendants who confront various allegations, including shoplifting, narcotics possession, underage drinking, and illegal possession of weapons. Swiftly commencing the process of building a robust defense is crucial in these cases, as timely intervention can help mitigate the enduring consequences that such charges might otherwise impose on a young person’s future.

    Internet Crimes Cases

    The realm of internet-related offenses spans a breadth of accusations, encompassing data theft, cyber terrorism, and the dissemination of nonconsensual explicit content. Penalties for these violations can be severe, potentially requiring registration as a sex offender. Skillful legal representation is pivotal in navigating the intricate landscape of internet crime charges and formulating an effective defense strategy.

    Disorderly Conduct Cases

    Defendants facing disorderly conduct charges are those alleged to have engaged in disruptive, dangerous, or offensive behavior. Instances of this may encompass actions like forcefully maneuvering through a crowd or igniting fireworks within a confined space. Though the penalties for disorderly conduct may not match the severity of certain other offenses, the significance of addressing such charges should not be underestimated. Swift action is imperative to devise a suitable defense against disorderly conduct accusations, ensuring the best possible outcome for the accused.

    Should You Talk to the Police After Being Arrested in Northfield, NJ?

    Engaging in conversation with the police without a lawyer present can have far-reaching implications that may adversely affect your case. There are multiple reasons why you should refrain from talking to the police without legal representation by your side.

    First and foremost, the legal system can be intricate and complex, and your words can be used against you in ways you might not anticipate. Law enforcement officers are skilled at questioning individuals and may employ tactics designed to elicit incriminating statements. Without a lawyer by your side, you might unintentionally provide information that could be used against you later in court. Having legal counsel present ensures that your rights are protected, preventing you from inadvertently jeopardizing your defense.

    Moreover, emotions and stress often run high during interactions with law enforcement. In such circumstances, your ability to think clearly and respond rationally might be compromised. Our legal team can serve as a buffer between you and the police, helping to ensure that any statements made are accurate, well-considered, and aligned with your best interests.

    In Northfield, New Jersey, as in any legal jurisdiction, laws and regulations can evolve and change. Our attorneys are well-versed in local statutes and precedents can provide critical insights into your specific situation and advise you on the best course of action. Our knowledge of the legal landscape can help you navigate the complexities of your case, potentially leading to a more favorable outcome.

    Lastly, invoking your right to legal counsel sends a clear signal to law enforcement that you are exercising your constitutional rights and taking your situation seriously. This can contribute to a more respectful and balanced interaction, setting the tone for the proceedings that follow.

    Call Our Northfield, NJ Criminal Defense Lawyer for Help with Your Case

    Facing criminal charges of any kind is a daunting experience, but we are here to help you through it. If you or someone you know has been charged with a crime in New Jersey, contact our Northfield, Atlantic City criminal defense lawyer as soon as possible. Our legal team will defend your rights in court and fight for your best interests. Call us today at (609) 616-4956.

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