Stationhouse Adjustments in NJ Juvenile Cases

Morristown Juvenile Case AttorneyJuveniles are treated differently in the criminal justice system in New Jersey, and rightfully so. Children generally do not need the harsh treatment that adults receive through the criminal justice system. Instead, taking steps to focus on rehabilitation is much more critical for minors suspected of committing criminal offenses.

When a juvenile is taken into custody for doing something that would otherwise be a crime if an adult was engaging in the act, then law enforcement often has the option to decline to file a formal criminal complaint. Instead, they can conduct what is known as a “stationhouse adjustment.”

What is a Stationhouse Adjustment?

Police will sometimes decide to make a stationhouse adjustment instead of filing a formal criminal complaint against a juvenile in New Jersey. This process usually involves having a meeting with the minor, along with his or her parents (or guardian), and, in some cases, the victim of the alleged crime. This group of people will sit down and discuss the offense. The juvenile will also have to go through some kind of punishment for his or her behavior, such as doing community service, paying restitution, or writing an essay.

The idea behind a stationhouse adjustment is to teach the juvenile a lesson without forcing them to go through the criminal justice process, including the formal court appearance. It allows them to avoid having something on their criminal record as well. It is faster, easier, and includes immediate consequences for a juvenile’s actions. It may also service the victims of a particular types of offenses, such as those whose property was vandalized.

When Is a Stationhouse Adjustment an Option?

Stationhouse adjustments can only be used for certain types of offenses. These include things like petty disorderly persons offenses, disorderly person offenses, fourth-degree offenses if the juvenile has no prior record, and municipal ordinance violations. Officers will generally use stationhouse adjustments for minor crimes committed by first-time offenders. Some of the most common offenses include things like trespassing, shoplifting (petty theft), and disorderly conduct. Charges related to controlled substances, sex crimes, third-degree offenses, and violations of parole are not offenses where a stationhouse adjustment is appropriate or permitted.

When determining whether to use a stationhouse adjustment or file a formal criminal complaint, the officer involved will consider factors like the nature and seriousness of the offense, the age of the juvenile involved, and the cooperation of all of the parties involved. For example, if a victim was seriously harmed by the juvenile’s actions, then the officer may be less likely to use a stationhouse adjustment.

Officers can also use stationhouse adjustments when a juvenile is engaging in an activity that is not necessarily illegal, but it is dangerous to themselves or others or disruptive. The New Jersey Office of the Attorney General has encouraged officers to use the stationhouse adjustment process as the first alternative to taking a juvenile into custody and making a formal charge. Police are permitted to use curbside warnings as a substitute as well.

How Does a Stationhouse Adjustment Work?

A juvenile officer will generally conduct the stationhouse adjustment. However, if one is not available, then the arresting officer or the detective can consult with the juvenile officer to sign off on the stationhouse adjustment as well. The officer will ask the juvenile, parent or guardian, and the victim to the police station to discuss the issue. If a victim does not agree to address the problem, then a stationhouse adjustment may not be possible.

Our team can work with you and your child to encourage that an officer use a stationhouse adjustment in certain circumstances. Contact The Tormey Law Firm for more information about how we can help you and your child if you are trying to maneuver through the juvenile justice system in New Jersey. Having an experienced juvenile criminal defense attorney can be a helpful asset under these circumstances. Call (908) 336-5008 or send us an email for more information.

Juvenile Defense Lawyers Morristown, NJ

New Jersey Juvenile Court LawyersNew Jersey uses the “JJC” or Juvenile Justice Commission to address all of the criminal cases alleged against those considered minors under NJ Law. The terms “minor” and “juvenile” are used interchangeably to refer to individuals under the age of 18. The JJC is the entity responsible for all planning and policy development related to the juvenile justice system. It was created in 1995 to help ensure that juveniles had their own criminal justice system that was less punitive than the adult system. The focus is three major issues: the care, custody, and rehabilitation of minors in New Jersey. Although the juvenile system is dedicated to upholding the standard of the best interests of the child, this should not lead you to believe that juvenile charges cannot result in severe consequences for those found guilty.

Juvenile Court in New Jersey

In addition to protecting the interests of juveniles in the system, the JJC also protects citizens throughout the state of New Jersey by ensuring that there is a program that addresses minors who may be considered dangerous to others. Public safety and personal responsibility are at the forefront of the JJC’s goals. The focus is also always on encouraging young people to be productive, independent, and law-abiding citizens in New Jersey. Unfortunately, situations occur in which young people are charged with criminal offenses such as possession of marijuana, cocaine possession, disorderly conduct, shoplifting, criminal mischief, trespassing, assault, and other crimes that force them into the Juvenile Court System. When these difficult scenarios occur, it is critical to have an experienced juvenile defense attorney protecting the rights of the minor and working toward the best possible result.

If your child has been charged with a juvenile criminal offense in New Jersey, the experienced juvenile lawyers at The Tormey Law Firm can help. Our attorneys defend minors in Family Court in Morris County and throughout New Jersey regularly and we are committed to protecting your child’s future from the detrimental effects of juvenile charges. Contact our firm anytime for an absolutely free and confidential consultation about your child’s  juvenile case.

NJ Juvenile Justice Process

How a Juvenile Enters the Criminal Court System

A young person enters the JJC system through a complaint process. The complaint charges the minor with a delinquent act. These delinquent acts would be considered a crime if an adult engaged in this type of activity.
Law enforcement can, and often does, take a juvenile into custody when he or she believes that a delinquent act has occurred. In addition to signing a delinquency complaint, an officer can also:

  • Release the juvenile to his or her parents or guardians with a warning or reprimand
  • Conduct a station house adjustment

The minor will be held in a secure detention facility in some cases. The officer must make a referral to court intake services for this type of admission to take place. The juvenile can also start the juvenile court process through non-law enforcement complaint or through a family crisis intervention unit referral. Family crisis intervention units (JFCIUs) divert specific problems away from the court. These specifically deal with family issues, including problems associated with:

  • Truancy
  • Runaways
  • Incorrigibility
  • Serious family conflict

JFCIUs provide crisis intervention services right away to try to stabilize the family situation. The JFCIU may also refer the family to other available community agencies as well.

Court Jurisdiction in NJ Juvenile Cases

The Family Court has jurisdiction over juvenile delinquency cases. However, a juvenile can also be waived into adult court as well. It is more likely that the minor will be treated as an adult if the delinquent act alleged is particularly violent, such as armed robbery, carjacking, aggravated assault with a weapon, manslaughter, or aggravated sexual assault.

Unlike the adult criminal justice system, minors charged with crimes in New Jersey generally appear in the Family Division of the Superior Court in the county where they live, not the county where the alleged offense occurred. In other words, if your child is charged with a juvenile offense in Hackensack but you live in Parsippany, their juvenile case will be heard in Morris County Superior Court in Morristown, NJ.

Possible Outcomes of a Juvenile Court Case in New Jersey

The next step in the JJC process is to determine whether a minor will be detained before their Family Court hearing. After that, the court will determine the “disposition” of this case. Disposition is another word for the result of a juvenile case. Assuming the charges are not dismissed, additional options for disposition may include:

  • Probation
  • Community-based services
  • Out-of-home services for child behavioral health
  • Fines
  • Restitution
  • Substance abuse treatment
  • Incarceration in a juvenile detention center

The court may also use a “deferred disposition” to resolve a juvenile matter. This option allows the juvenile to avoid being adjudicated delinquent (same as a conviction for an adult) as long as he or she complies with certain conditions. It’s designed to be a second chance for a minor. The youth can avoid going to court and jail, paying fines, and having a criminal record. A deferred disposition is similar to a diversionary program for an adult, with terms of probation that ultimately prevent a juvenile charge from tarnishing the child’s record.

Juvenile Facing Charges in Morris County, New Jersey

If your child has been accused of a crime, navigating the juvenile justice system can be confusing and overwhelming for you and your family. Get legal help by calling the Morristown criminal defense team at The Tormey Law Firm. We have successfully defended countless juveniles in Family Court and adult court in New Jersey and we are fully prepared to present your child’s case in a way that will minimize the impact on his or her future.

Falsely Accused of Drug Distribution in Morris County NJ

FDU Student Charged with Possession of Marijuana with Intent to Distribute

Morristown NJ Marijuana Lawyer
Drug Distribution Charges Morris County NJ

The Morris County criminal defense attorneys at the Tormey Law Firm LLC recently represented a client who was charged with possession of marijuana with intent to distribute arising on the campus of Fairleigh Dickinson University located in Florham Park, New Jersey. His charges were as follows:

  • Possession of marijuana with intent to distribute in a quantity more than one (1) oz. but under five (5) lbs, a crime of the third degree, in violation of N.J.S. 2c:35-5(b)(11)
  • Possession of marijuana more than fifty (50) grams, a crime of the fourth degree, in violation of N.J.S. 2C:35-10(a)(3)
  • Possession of drug paraphernalia, a disorderly persons offense, in violation of N.J.S. 2C:36-2
  • Possession of a fake ID, a crime of the fourth degree, in violation of N.J.S. 2C:21-2.1(d)

The third degree crime is the most serious offense which is punishable by 3-5 years in prison. The fourth degree crimes are each punishable by up to eighteen (18) months in prison and the disorderly persons offense is punishable by up to six (6) months in the Morris County Jail.

Our client is a college student at FDU with no prior criminal history. He was living in a dorm room and his roommate had these illegal drugs in their bathroom of the dorm suite when it was raided by the police. First, we were able to convince the Morris County Prosecutor’s office to downgrade the felony charges to misdemeanors (disorderly persons offenses) and remand them back to the Florham Park Municipal Court for resolution.

Then, when we appeared in Florham Park Municipal Court, we were able to convince the municipal prosecutor that the roommate was responsible for the contraband and not our client. We plead guilty to a municipal ordinance violation (also known as a local ordinance) for the possession of the Fake ID which resulted in a fine and no criminal record.

Drug Charge Attorneys Fairleigh Dickinson University in Florham Park NJ

This was a great result for our client and the Tormey Law Firm LLC. If you or a loved one needs assistance with a criminal charge at Fairleigh Dickinson University (known as “FDU”) or anywhere in Florham Park or Morris County NJ, contact our Morristown offices now for immediate assistance at 908-336-5008. The initial consultation is always provided free of charge.

Is New Jersey Headed toward Legal Marijuana?

The war over marijuana rages on in New Jersey, with politicians and lawmakers taking up sides. Officials in Jersey City are on the pro-decriminalization side of the argument, which is manifested in their actions of late. Mayor Steve Fulop and Chief Prosecutor of Jersey City, Jacob Hudnut, recently sent out correspondence to Jersey City’s criminal prosecution team. The memo set out plans for a much more lenient policy related to marijuana charges, with the ultimate goal of decriminalization. This new Jersey City plan directed the city’s prosecutors to address specific marijuana-related crimes very differently. It directed assistant prosecutors to downgrade these charges to non-criminal, local ordinance offenses:

  • Marijuana possession
  • Possession of marijuana in a motor vehicle
  • Under the Influence of marijuana
  • Possession of drug paraphernalia
  • Loitering to get or distribute marijuana

This new directive also states that if you are arrested on a marijuana charge in Jersey City, then your case may be dismissed under certain conditions. One of those conditions is that you do not have any prior convictions. In addition, under Jersey City’s new policy, every marijuana-related case relative to a simple violation of a local ordinance, which does not leave you with a criminal record.

Mayor Fulop, and Chief Prosecutor Jacob Hudnut believe that prosecuting marijuana-related cases has a disproportionate impact on minorities and is a drain on Jersey City’s municipal resources. There are several benefits for the city that come from declining to pursue these cases.

However, New Jersey’s Attorney General almost immediately responded to Jersey City’s plan by saying that it could not be legally effective based on the current legal landscape. Attorney General Grewal argued that city prosecutors should adhere to the supervisory power of the attorney general’s office as well as the office of the county prosecutor. He states that the city cannot independently decriminalize marijuana without support from other governmental entities, including the county and the state.

In addition, Grewal argued that city prosecutors can only alter pre-existing complaints, including by amending or dismissing them, for “good cause” based on the Rules of Court. He states that this policy will not hold up in court because marijuana is still illegal in the State of New Jersey. Exercising prosecutorial discretion will generally not be considered “good cause” under these circumstances.

It is anticipated that in September, Attorney General Grewal will release his directive as it pertains to the use of prosecutorial discretion in marijuana-related cases in the municipal courts. In addition, New Jersey lawmakers are expected to vote on a piece of legislation that would legalize marijuana in the coming months. Although lawmakers are making strides toward decriminalizing marijuana use, nothing is certain yet.

Keep in mind, in New Jersey it is still a crime to possess, grow, and sell marijuana, as well as being in possession of drug paraphernalia. If you are arrested on a marijuana-related charge, you should immediately retain the services of an experienced criminal defense attorney. Travis Tormey and the defense team at The Tormey Law Firm are prepared to be strong advocates for your rights. Contact our Morristown office at 908-336-5008 or contact us online for a free consultation.

For additional information pertaining to this issue, access the following resource:

Prominent New Jersey Democrats Unite to Decriminalize Marijuana

New Jersey State Troopers Arrest Alabama Fugitive Who Allegedly Possessed Loaded Handgun and Drugs

Handgun Possession Attorney Riverdale NJNJ State troopers recently apprehended an Alabama man who was allegedly a fugitive and wanted by law enforcement. The suspect is Corey Shane Cagle, a 41-year-old man from Centre, Alabama. According to New Jersey authorities, Cagle was involved in a multi-car accident on Route 287 in Riverdale, NJ. New Jersey State troopers responded to the scene, found Cagle, and ran a computer check on him. That’s when they reportedly learned that he was wanted by authorities in Alabama on drug charges.

According to criminal complaints filed in Morris County, NJ, a New Jersey State trooper searched Cagle’s Dodge Ram 3500 and came across marijuana and prescription painkillers in a jar. Police also reportedly discovered a loaded Smith & Wesson Model 438 .38-caliber revolver in the car. (The gun was reportedly loaded with ammunition: Hornady Critical Defense .38-caliber hollow point bullets.) When Cagle was searched at police headquarters, police allegedly found him carrying marijuana rolling papers.

Severe Penalties for Criminal Weapons Offenses in Riverdale, NJ

Cagle has been charged with a number of crimes in both New Jersey and Alabama. It is likely that Cagle will have to face the consequences of his Riverdale criminal charges before possibly being extradited to Alabama to stand trial on the other charges. The NJ criminal charges include unlawful possession of a weapon, possession of hollow point bullets, simple possession of marijuana, drug paraphernalia possession, and illegal prescription drug possession.

Although Cagle’s status as a fugitive probably meant that he was not licensed to carry the handgun in Alabama, even a valid carry permit from Alabama would not have mattered in New Jersey. That’s because NJ applies its own laws to residents and out-of-state visitors. A person without a handgun permit for New Jersey will be subject to criminal weapons charges, including harsh penalties set forth by the NJ Graves Act. Those penalties can include minimum mandatory prison sentences for gun crime offenders.

Free Consultation with NJ Criminal Defense Attorney About Handgun Possession Charges in Riverdale, New Jersey

Were you arrested and charged with unlawful possession of a weapon, possession of a weapon for an unlawful purpose, or any other criminal weapons offense in Riverdale, New Jersey? You need to speak with Riverdale criminal defense lawyer Travis J. Tormey immediately.

“Click It or Ticket” Campaign Targets Motorists Who Fail to Wear Seat Belts in Morris County, New Jersey

Seatbelt Ticket Lawyers Morristown NJPolice departments throughout Morris County plan to target motorists who fail to wear their seatbelts, beginning this week and running through June 3. This crackdown on seatbelt violators is part of the annual “Click It or Ticket” campaign in NJ, a campaign that calls for law enforcement in Morris County and elsewhere in New Jersey to issue extra traffic tickets to those who violate state and local seat belt laws. The zero-tolerance policy for seatbelt violations is intended to signal to drivers and passengers that it is unacceptable to be in a moving car without wearing a seatbelt. The hope is that the crackdown will result in a significant reduction in fatal traffic accidents.

The campaign to reduce fatal traffic crashes includes an effort by the NJ Division of Highway Traffic Safety (DHTS) to use social media. The DHTS recently posted a message on the agency’s Twitter account: “Seatbelts are the most important safety feature in your car, and are there for a reason – they could be the difference that saves your life in a crash. Click it or ticket!” The DHTS has noted that motorists who wear seat belts are 75% more likely to survive a car wreck than motorists who fail to wear seat belts.

Speeding Violators and Drunk Drivers Face Harsh Penalties in Morristown, NJ

Statistics indicate that roughly 94 percent of New Jersey drivers and passengers wear seat belts. However, the motorists who do not buckle up are at a heightened risk of being catastrophically injured, or killed, in a car accident. That’s why NJ police are trying to encourage motorists to “click it” when getting into their motor vehicles. The “Click It or Ticket” campaign has reportedly been effective at reducing serious traffic accidents in previous years. In 2017, for instance, New Jersey police issued almost 17,800 traffic tickets during the two-week campaign, with NJ State Police troopers issuing more than 4,000 of tickets. Moreover, NJ police also issued 6,363 citations for speeding and charged 976 motorists with Driving While Intoxicated (DWI) during the 2017 campaign.

A total of eight police departments in Morris County are participating in the DHTS campaign this year: Chatham, Denville, Harding, Kinnelon, Morris Plains, Netcong, Parsippany-Troy Hills, and Rockaway, New Jersey. A total of 173 police departments in Bergen County, Essex County, Sussex County, Warren County, and other counties in NJ are also participating in this year’s “Click It or Ticket” campaign. Most of the police departments will be receiving a $5,500 grant from the state for their participation.

Schedule a Free Consultation with an Experienced Denville Traffic Ticket Lawyer

Were you recently cited for speeding, reckless driving, or some other traffic violation in Morris County, New Jersey? Then you should talk to an experienced Morristown traffic attorney immediately. Contact Morris County traffic ticket lawyer Travis J. Tormey now.

Suspect Charged with Burglary & Theft for Alleged Theft of Minibikes in Mendham Borough, New Jersey

Theft Lawyer Morristown NJA Randolph, New Jersey man was arrested after allegedly stealing almost $5,000 worth of minibikes and skis and selling them to a pawnshop in Morristown, NJ. The suspect is Lennon J. Freed, a 32-year-old man from Randolph in Morris County, New Jersey. According to law enforcement officials, Freed burglarized two stores in Mendham Borough, NJ in early September 2017 and stole several expensive items, including minibikes and skis. He then allegedly took the stolen goods to Perfect Pawn, a pawnshop located on Speedwell Avenue in Morristown, NJ, and sold them for less than $200. Detectives with both the Mendham Borough Police Department and the Morristown Police Department investigated the break-ins in Mendham Borough and eventually tracked the stolen merchandise to the pawnshop in Morristown. Investigators reportedly found shop receipts that showed that Freed sold seven items one day and nine items the following day. Authorities believe that most of what Freed sold to the Morristown pawnshop was stolen during the burglaries in Mendham, New Jersey.

Although law enforcement quickly identified Freed as the main suspect in the Mendham Borough burglary and theft case, placed him under arrest was another story entirely. Prosecutors in Morris County charged Freed with multiple crimes in September 2017, but he was not taken into police custody until recently. Even though Freed had a warrant out for his arrest, he was not arrested until this past week when he turned himself in to Morristown police.

Severe Penalties for Felony Theft Crime Charges in Morris County, New Jersey

Now that Freed has been arrested, he will face several criminal charges. Court records indicate that Freed has been charged with theft of movable property, as well as two counts of burglary. Since the retail value of the items Freed allegedly stole is greater than $500, he will probably face third degree theft crime charges. If Freed had been accused of stealing merchandise valued at less than $200, he would likely have been charged with a disorderly persons offense. (This typically happens in NJ shoplifting cases.) Instead, Freed has been charged with a third degree crime that is punishable by up to five years behind bars in NJ State Prison. Beyond that, Freed could be ordered to pay restitution to the victims of the thefts.

Contact an Experienced Morris County Criminal Defense Lawyer About Your Theft Charges

Were you arrested and charged with a theft or fraud crime in Morristown, Parsippany, Mount Olive, Roxbury, Denville, or somewhere else in Morris County? Then you need to talk to New Jersey criminal attorney Travis J. Tormey immediately. Attorney Tormey can help you fight the charges and stay out of jail. Contact him anytime.

Teenagers in Roxbury, NJ Accused of Posting Threatening Image of Gun on Social Media

Juvenile Crime Lawyers Roxbury NJTwo students at Roxbury Township High School were recently placed under arrest and charged with terroristic threats for allegedly posting a threatening message and image of a gun on Snapchat. According to authorities in Roxbury, New Jersey, the two juveniles, a 16-year-old boy and a 17-year-old boy, used social media to deliver the threat. The message reportedly read as follows: “I just can’t wait to get back from Spring Break.”

A short time after 1:30 p.m., the Roxbury Township Police Department got word of the threatening message and sent Roxbury cops to the school to make sure that anyone in the building was safe. The next day, despite the fact that it was still spring break for students in the Roxbury School District, police officers remained stationed at the school. Meanwhile, Roxbury detectives investigated and determined the identities of the two teenage suspects. Both were later arrested by Roxbury law enforcement.

Roxbury High School officials sent an email to parents of students at the school and assured them that the situation was under control. The same email, written by Roxbury Superintendent Loretta Radulic, was later posted on the official school website.

Harsh Penalties for Juvenile Offenses in Roxbury, NJ

The two suspects have been charged with multiple juvenile crime offenses for terroristic threats, causing false public alarm, and cyber harassment. While the case works its way through the criminal justice system, the suspects are being detained at the Morris County Juvenile Detention Center in Morristown, NJ.

If the underage suspects are ultimately convicted on the most serious charges of terroristic threats, they could potentially face severe penalties. Although the NJ juvenile justice system tends to emphasize treatment and rehabilitation over incarceration, NJ prosecutors will still go after defendants accused of committing certain kinds of juvenile threat crimes – particularly after the recent school shootings in Florida and elsewhere that have drawn much public scrutiny over the inability of law enforcement to keep children safe.

Schedule a Free Consultation with an Experienced Roxbury Juvenile Offense Attorney

If your child was arrested and charged with a juvenile crime in Roxbury, Parsippany-Troy Hills, Dover, Morristown, or anywhere else in Morris County, NJ, it is imperative that you talk to a qualified Morris County juvenile crime lawyer. Travis J. Tormey is an experienced New Jersey juvenile crime attorney who can defend your child against serious charges. Contact Attorney Tormey today.

Ex-Teacher Charged with Aggravated Sexual Assault of Juveniles in in Elizabeth, NJ

Elizabeth Sexual Assault SuspectAn ex-teacher at a middle school in Elizabeth, NJ was recently indicted on sexual assault charges. The defendant is Robert Goodlin, a 75-year-old man who previously taught at an Elizabeth middle school. Goodlin has been accused of sexually assaulting two underage students numerous times over a period of approximately 10 years.

The Union County Prosecutor’s Office Special Victims Unit started an investigation into Goodlin and ultimately concluded that he should be arrested and criminally charged. According to law enforcement officials, Goodlin sexually assaulted one juvenile victim from 1993 to 1998 while he worked as an industrial technology teacher at Joseph Battin School No. 4 in Elizabeth, New Jersey. Goodlin allegedly sexually assaulted the second underage victim in 2002 and 2003.

Despite the allegations against him, Goodlin was allowed to resign his teaching position at the Elizabeth, NJ middle school without being terminated. This allowed Goodlin to later work as a substitute teacher in other NJ school districts. Now the New Jersey legislature is looking to prevent this from happening in the future by passing a law to require schools to disclose sexual abuse allegations against teachers.

Severe Penalties for Sexual Assault in Elizabeth, New Jersey

Both alleged victims in the sex crime case were under 18. As a result, Goodlin has been charged with aggravated sexual assault. Unless Goodlin works out a plea agreement with prosecutors, he will probably stand trial in Union County Superior Court. He was already indicted by a Union County grand jury on 14 criminal counts: aggravated sexual assault, sexual assault, aggravated criminal sexual contact, criminal sexual contact, and endangering the welfare of a child.

If the eventual trial results in Goodlin being convicted on the aggravated sexual assault charges, he would face significant prison time. As set forth by N.J.S.A. 2C:14-2, aggravated sexual assault is a first degree felony that carries a penalty of 10-20 years in NJ State Prison.

Free Consultation with an Experienced Union County Sex Crime Lawyer About Sexual Assault Charges

Were you arrested and charged with sexual assault, criminal sexual contact, child endangerment, or any other sex crime in Union County or Morris County, NJ? Then you should talk to a qualified criminal defense lawyer immediately. Travis J. Tormey is a skilled criminal attorney who can help you beat your charges. Contact him now to schedule a free initial consultation.

Were You Arrested and Charged with Disorderly Conduct at the St. Paddy’s Parade in Morristown, NJ?

Morristown St. Patrick's Day Parade Criminal LawyersThe 39th annual Morris County St. Patrick’s Day Parade starts at 12:00 p.m. on Saturday, March 10th in Morristown, NJ. The Morristown parade is the largest Saint Paddy’s celebration in New Jersey and should draw more than 50,000 people, if the weather isn’t too bad this weekend. The parade will begin at the Morristown Town Hall on South Street and go past the Morristown Green, ending at Morristown High School on Atno Avenue.

Although the parade is a source of fun for most of the people in attendance, it can also be a source of trouble for some people. Every year, numerous individuals are arrested and face criminal charges and municipal ordinance violations. The reality is that a lot of the people in attendance at the parade will be frequenting many of the local Morristown businesses, including bars and restaurants that serve alcohol. Since law enforcement expects alcohol to cause problems for some of the parade attendees, police will be out in full force to try to “keep the peace.”

The most common citation issued by Morristown law enforcement at the St. Patrick’s Day parade is for disorderly conduct. There will also likely be citations and tickets issued for underage drinking, disturbing the peace, open containers of alcohol, simple assault, and resisting arrest. Moreover, minors could be cited for possession of fake IDs, while others could be arrested and face criminal charges for smoking marijuana.

If you are arrested and charged with a crime or a municipal ordinance violation at this year’s Saint Patrick’s Day Parade in Morristown, NJ, you need to talk to an experienced criminal attorney. The Morristown criminal defense lawyers at the Tormey Law Firm know how to help you fight your St. Patrick’s Day Parade charges and avoid a criminal conviction. Our skilled legal team has successfully gotten criminal charges downgraded or dismissed altogether. To discuss your case, call our office in Morristown at (908) 336-5008 or fill out our online contact form.

Disorderly Conduct Charges & Penalties in Morristown, New Jersey

Disorderly conduct is one of the most common charges issued to individuals attending the Saint Patrick’s Day Parade in Morristown, New Jersey. That’s because disorderly conduct is a broad charge that covers a lot of behavior that might be considered “improper” by law enforcement – including the use of offensive language. As set forth by N.J.S.A. 2C:33-2, “improper behavior” means anything that causes or creates a risk of public inconvenience, annoyance, or alarm. Sometimes, this can involve fighting or other physical altercations. In a lot of instances, Morristown police issue a citation for disorderly conduct after someone has been drinking alcohol and lost control. A conviction for disorderly conduct is New Jersey is punishable by a sentence of up to 30 days in the local county jail and a fine of $500.

Alcohol-Related Charges at Morristown St. Patrick’s Day Parade

A lot of criminal charges and ordinance violations issued at the St. Patrick’s Day Parade in Morristown involve alcohol. For example, police can issue citations for open containers of alcohol – this happens when a parade attendee leaves a bar or restaurant with an alcoholic drink in hand. Additionally, underage people in possession of alcohol or false identification are also often charged with criminal offenses on St. Patrick’s Day. Since people tend to drink on Saint Patrick’s Day, couples can become involved in domestic violence incidents stemming from their alcohol use. A domestic dispute in Morristown, NJ can result in serious criminal charges and a restraining order. Finally, DWI/DUI charges are commonly brought against people who get drunk and then attempt to drive home from the St. Paddy’s Day Parade.

Marijuana Possession Arrests & Charges at Morristown St. Paddy’s Day Parade

Until NJ legislators change the drug laws in the state, possession and use of marijuana is strictly prohibited by the New Jersey Criminal Code. As a result, thousands of people end up being charged with simple possession of marijuana under 50 grams throughout Morris County and the rest of NJ every year. During the Morristown Saint Paddy’s Day Parade, police will be on the lookout for people who smell of marijuana, people who are found smoking marijuana, and people who are driving in the area with marijuana in their car. If you are charged with simple possession of less than 50 grams of marijuana in Morristown, it is considered a disorderly persons offense. A conviction could lead to you being sentenced to up to 6 months in the Morris County Jail, fined up to $1,000, and the loss of your driver’s license for 6 months.

Were You Arrested on Saint Patrick’s Day? Contact an Experienced Morristown Criminal Lawyer Today!

If you attended the Morris County St. Paddy’s Day Parade and now face drug charges, alcohol charges, or disorderly conduct charges in Morristown, NJ, you need skilled legal representation. Contact the Tormey Law Firm in Morristown now at (908) 336-5008 to schedule a free initial consultation with an experienced criminal attorney.

For more information about this year’s Morristown St. Patrick’s Day Parade, visit the parade day website.