Criminal defense lawyer Travis J. Tormey was recently asked for his thoughts on how the Ray Rice domestic violence case was handled by Atlantic City prosecutors.
NJ Advance Media spoke with Mr. Tormey about the penalties – or lack thereof – levied against Rice in the much-publicized case.
As most people already know, Rice was charged with aggravated assault after he reportedly attacked his then-girlfriend (now-wife) inside an Atlantic City elevator. Video footage showed Rice dragging a female’s limp body out of the elevator.
Now the media has gone into a full frenzy as new video footage of the assault has been leaked. The new footage shows Rice hitting his then-girlfriend in the face and knocking her to the ground.
After seeing the disturbing images, many people are wondering why the Atlantic City Prosecutor’s Office did not push for jail time in the case. As was reported months ago, Rice avoided jail when he was allowed entrance into a diversionary program known as Pre-Trial Intervention (PTI).
The Prosecutor’s Office has responded to criticism of their handling of the case by stating that Rice was eligible for the program because he was a first-time offender. However, it has been observed by some legal experts that the prosecutor’s office has discretion to deny entrance into PTI if the offense involved an act of violence that was committed with deliberate intent.
When approached by media outlets, Morris County NJ defense attorney Travis J. Tormey observed that he has had clients in similar circumstances get denied entrance into the Pre-Trial Intervention program because prosecutors are often reluctant to let domestic violence offenders off the hook without jail time.
To learn more, read the NJ.com article entitled “Ray Rice Video: Prosecutor’s Office Says ‘Decision Was Correct’ to Not Seek Jail Time for Rice.”
If you are facing domestic violence or aggravated assault charges in New Jersey, contact Morristown NJ criminal defense attorney Travis J. Tormey for a free consultation about your case.