Development of a Criminal Defense in NJ
- March 5, 2012
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The New Jersey Rules of Criminal Procedure require automatic presentation, by the prosecutor to the defendant, of all information which would afford the defendant opportunity to present a complete defense. This information includes police reports, recordings of interviews with informants, witnesses, the accused and others, applications for search warrants, laboratory reports, description and photographs of evidence and any other information the prosecution used to develop their case against the accused.
Often reviewing this discovery in light of the prosecutions charges leads to the finding that discovery is not complete. Most often the defendant will not be provided with surveillance points of those claiming to observed defendant committing the crime or police records of the times and locations of patrol. This information can show that there is no way defendant or their actions could have been clearly observed by police or witnesses or that the police arrived based on the time of a confidential informant seeking a deal in their own case.
The defense of the accused is based on inconsistencies, gaps, inappropriate investigative tactics and other weaknesses in the state’s case. Preparation of a strong defense requires a thorough investigation of all discovery provided, motions to exclude evidence obtained in violation of defendant’s rights, the ability to recognize what information has not been provided by the prosecution and motions to the Court to obtain this information. Preparing a strong defense also requires visiting the scene of the crime to see what the police or witnesses could have seen, taking measurements, looking from the angles police or witness were looking from, viewing the evidence and obtaining experts to testify regarding the weaknesses of the prosecution’s case. In preparing a defense the accused sees the strengths and weaknesses in the prosecution’s case and can also make a better decision about whether to accept or deny a plea offer before or during the trial.
Those accused of a crime in NJ can be subject to a wide range of penalties including fines, probation, incarceration, loss of professional licenses or ability to own a gun and registration as a sex offender depending on the nature of the crime. Anyone accused of a crime in New Jersey should immediately obtain an attorney to prepare a defense. An experienced lawyer will immediately obtain discovery and begin to investigate all aspects of the prosecution’s case in order to obtain the best possible outcome for the accused.
For more information on preparing a criminal defense visit HeatherDarlingLawyer.com.