Middlesex County man arrested for boating while intoxicated

The Coast Guard arrested a Middlesex County man for operating his 26-foot boat while intoxicated, SILive.com reports. He was charged with violations of federal navigation law and taken to a New York City police station, where his blood alcohol level was measured at 0.06%.

Operating any moving vehicle under the influence carries substantial risks to health and property, and boats are certainly no exception. New Jersey law recognizes this risk and treats boating while intoxicated and driving while intoxicated in a fairly similar manner, with comparable penalties and increased sentences for repeat offenders.

Penalties for DUI offenses
First offense; blood alcohol content <0.10%
$250-400 fine
12 month boating license suspension
3 month drivers license suspension

First offense; blood alcohol content >0.10%, boating under the influence of drugs, or allowing another person to operate a vessel while under the influence
$300-$500 fine
12 month boating license suspension
7-12 month drivers license suspension

Second offense
$500-$1,000 fine
30 days community service
48hrs-90days imprisonment
2 year boating license suspension
2 year drivers license suspension

Third and subsequent offenses
$1,000 fine
180 days imprisonment
up to 90 days community service
10 year boating license suspension
10 year drivers license suspension

New Jersey BUI/DWI Defense Lawyer
Contact the Law Offices of Palumbo & Renaud at 1-866-664-8118 to speak with a New Jersey DUI/DWI attorney about boating under the influence charges. The initial consultation is no-cost and no-obligation, and any information shared with our attorneys is held in the strictest confidence.

Palumbo & Renaud has offices in Cranford, Elizabeth, and Manasquan, and handles all types of criminal cases before the municipal and Superior Courts in Essex County, Middlesex County, Monmouth County, Ocean County, and Union County.

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Suspect On the Run After Lewdness Offense at Sandy Hook Beach

Redbankgreen.com reports that search dogs and helicopters were deployed in pursuit of a suspect who exposed himself on the beach at Sandy Hook. The man was allegedly masturbating over a woman who was lying on the beach. When she looked up and screamed, he then grabbed her by the jacket before running away. Law enforcement units from the Monmouth County Sheriff’s Office and from nearby municipalities were sent in to aid the Park Service in the search.

If the suspect in this case is apprehended, he’ll likely be charged with disorderly persons lewdness and sentenced to up to 6 months in prison. He could also be charged with disorderly persons assault for grabbing the victim’s jacket and with eluding arrest, also a disorderly persons charge.

Sandy Point Lewdness Defense Attorney
If you’ve been involved in a lewdness incident at Sandy Hook or anywhere elsewhere in Monmouth County, call me, Anthony N. Palumbo, Esq., at 908-337-7353 to set up a free legal consultation. As the lead defense attorney at the law firm of Palumbo & Renaud and a former municipal prosecutor and public defender, I’ve successfully handled countless of lewdness and indecent exposure cases, often getting clients’ charges dropped or reduced to minor offenses. Call me today to discuss your case in confidence and learn how I can help get your charges resolved.

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Lewd Conduct in Union County: Private Moments in Public Places

New Jersey laws governing lewd conduct make it easy for a couple engaging in a sexual encounter while under the impression that they are alone to be charged with a sex offense in Union County.  The law states that a person is guilty of lewd conduct if he engages in an offensive act in a place where he could reasonably expect to be viewed by others. Therefore, if two people have a few drinks before seeking the seclusion of a dark alley for an intimate moment and the dark alley turns out to not be private, this could result in charges of lewd conduct in Union County.  The standard for determining whether a person could reasonably expect to be viewed is an objective point of view.  Therefore the mindset of the individual in the heat of the moment is irrelevant.

Consider the following case as an example of behavior that could result in lewd conduct charges.  Recently, New Jersey police arrested several couples for engaging in sexual encounters in secluded areas of a public park.  Parts of the park ground were very secluded and it was in those places where some individuals set up blankets and engaged in activity under the impression that they were alone.  The problem is that the place is technically public and people wandering through the woods might observe these private couples. While these couples may have been under the impression that they were alone, a jury could find that a reasonable person would have been aware of the likelihood of being observed and lead to a conviction for the state.

Call a leading sex crime attorney if you have been charged with lewd conduct or indecent exposure in New Jersey at 908-337-7353 for a free consultation.

 

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Favorable Results for Child Porn Offender – Union County Sex Crime Lawyer

I recently represented a college student who downloaded a number of images of pre-pubescent females.  The government found out about his involvement, obtained a search warrant, impounded his computer, and filed criminal charges against him.  His exposure for jail as a result of these charges was up to 8 years!  He had no criminal record.  I was able to obtain a probationary sentence for this college student and reduced the child porn charges against him.  The laws concerning the internet and pornography are evolving.  A lawyer that is familiar with the internet and pornography will give his client a leg up in defending himself when charged with doing something wrong involving the internet and pornography.

Indictable Theft Charge Reduced to Municipal Offense
A man in Edison was recently charged with theft of services by the local electric company.  The electric company said that he disconnected the electric meters so that he would not be charged for the electricity that he was using and had been doing so for quite some time.  The amount of electricity that he stole amounted to over $7,000.00!  I represented him and was able to show that other people had access to the electric meters.  I was able to raise doubt of his intent to steal the services and managed to have the matter downgraded from an indictable offense back to the local municipal court.  He received a small fine after pleading guilty to a local ordinance that did not involve the offense of theft.  Knowledge of the laws concerning theft and numerous defenses that might be available require the experience of one who has frequently encountered these problems.  I have been practicing law in the State of New Jersey for almost 40 years and have encountered thousands of various situations involving theft.

Union County Criminal Defense
The situations above are just few examples of the legal outcomes I have been obtaining for over 35 years. Regardless of whether you are facing minor municipal charges or serious criminal offenses, at the law offices of Palumbo & Renaud I sue every resource within my disposal to defend the cases before me.  I call upon my experience with past similar cases, my knowledge of the prosecution and presiding judge based on my prior trial experience with them, my team of defense experts including investigations, physicians and engineers and my own abilities as a trustworthy and aggressive lawyer to defend your charge.  To learn what I may be able to do in your particular case, contact me today and speak to an attorney who has been getting the best possible results for clients for over 35 years.  Call 908-337-7353 for a free consultation today or visit my website www.palumbo-renaud.com to learn more about DUI, DWI, and Breathalyzer Refusal in New Jersey.

Summary:
A young woman was recently charged with vehicular homicide and a DUI in Union County after an accident killed one of her passengers.  She was given a blood test in lieu of a breathalyzer, the latter being the more common of the two tests.  There are several reasons why the police may have decided to subject her to a blood test instead of a breathalyzer. One of the main reasons a blood test will be administered is if an accident has occurred.  In such case, the driver and passengers are often brought to the hospital immediately preventing a breathalyzer from being administered within a reasonable time of the accident.

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A Highland Park Man was Charged with Sexually Assaulting Two Girls in Middlesex County

A Highland Park man previously charged with improperly touching a student at his martial arts school now faces charges of sexually assaulting two 15-year-old girls. The man, who was also a New Brunswick teacher, surrendered to Highland Park police was charged with two counts each of aggravated criminal sexual assault and endangering the welfare of the two girls in Middlesex County.
Aggravated sexual assault is charged under N.J.S.A. 2C: 14-2. In the current matter, the
defendant as charged with two counts of this crime. If convicted, he could potentially face
consecutive terms resulting in a prolonged period of incarceration.
New Jersey criminal procedure permits judges at sentencing for two separate offenses to impose incarceration to be served concurrent or consecutive. In the event that a judge elects the terms to be served concurrent, then defendant will serve both jail terms during the same time. For example, if a Judge sentences defendant to three years the first sexual assault and three years for the second to be served concurrently, then the defendant serves only three years of jail time. However, if the Judge imposes the sentence consecutively then defendant would have to serve SIX years.
A skilled defense attorney can help reduce one’s sentence and potentially have them run
concurrently. Anthony N. Palumbo, a New Jersey Criminal Defense Lawyer, understand the
workings of the law and can properly defend accused persons in sexual assault offenses as well as those who have been convicted. Visit my website, www.palumborenaud.com, for more information. I have been defending individuals against sexual assault charges, including those involving minors, in New Jersey for almost four decades. As a longstanding member of the legal community, a former prosecutor, and a current public defender, I can give you an honest assessment of the penalties you face and the best possible avenues of relief. If you would like to discuss your case, freely and confidentially, with an experienced attorney at no obligation, contact me at 908-337-7353 for a free consultation.

 

Summary:
A Highland Park man faces two counts of aggravated sexual assault. Because of the seriousness of the crimes charged, the defendant could go to jail for a considerable amount of time. The length of time depends on his sentence being run consecutively or concurrently. This determination is made by a judge and can be greatly affected by your attorney.

 

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Three men arrested in Union County convenience store robbery

As reported by Springfield Patch, a Springfield police officer recently arrested three men for armed robbery after witnessing two of them rob a convenience store clerk at gunpoint while the third waited in a getaway car. The police officer recovered the handgun used in the robbery as well as the stolen cash register drawer, and the men were transported to the Union County Jail.

Under New Jersey law, a person is guilty of robbery if, in the course of committing a theft, he:
(1)    inflicts bodily injury or uses force upon another person; or
(2)    threatens another person with or purposely puts him in fear of immediate bodily injury; or
(3)    commits or threatens to immediately commit any crime of the first or second degree.

Robbery is generally a second degree crime, which is punishable by 5 to 10 years in prison, but it can be upgraded to a first degree offense subject to a possible sentence of 10 to 20 years if, in the course of committing the theft, the person attempts to kill anyone or purposely attempts to inflict serious bodily injury, or if he is armed with, uses, of threatens to use a deadly weapon.

If you’ve been charged with robbery or another theft or property crime in New Jersey, you could be facing serious jail time, and consulting with an experienced robbery defense lawyer could make a big difference in the outcome of your case. For a seasoned criminal defense attorney, contact me, Anthony N. Palumbo, New Jersey Criminal Defense Attorney, through the email form on my website, or call me at 1-866-664-8118 for a free and confidential consultation. As a former prosecutor and a current criminal defense attorney with more than 35 years of experience, I know how to fight robbery charges. Whatever the seriousness of your case, I will defend your right to be treated as innocent until proven guilty, I will press every available legal defense, and I will fight to protect your rights throughout the entire judicial process.

 

 

Summary
Three men arrested in Union County convenience store robbery
A Springfield police officer recently arrested three men for armed robbery after witnessing two of them rob a convenience store clerk at gunpoint while the third waited in a getaway car. The police officer recovered the handgun used in the robbery as well as the stolen cash register drawer, and the men were transported to the Union County Jail.

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New trial required in Monmouth County child endangerment case due to inadequate jury instructions

The conviction and sentencing of a high school baseball coach for endangering the welfare of ten children was irreparably tainted by faulty jury instructions, a New Jersey court ruled in October. The error, the court held, required a reversal of his conviction and commencement of a new trial. State v. McInerney, 2012 N.J. Super. LEXIS 163, No. A-5292-09T1 (N.J. App. Div. Oct. 10, 2012).

The defendant served as the head baseball coach at a Catholic high school in Monmouth County until 2007, when charges surfaced that he had paid boys on the team to send him reports about their masturbatory practices. Ten boys, three of whom were under 16, provided similar accounts of their interactions with him. At trial, the defendant admitted to having sexual conversations with the boys, but claimed to have done so only to encourage masturbation as an alternative to intercourse and to provide a safe outlet for them to discuss their sexuality.

The defendant was convicted on multiple counts of second degree endangering the welfare of children under a provision of the statute imposing enhanced penalties on offenders who have a “legal duty” or who have “assumed responsibility” for the care of the child-victim. As the court explained, the harsher penalties provided in the statute for those who have assumed responsibility for the care of a child were intended to address “the particular emotional harm” and its “profound effect on the child when the harm is inflicted by a parental figure in whom the child trusts.” The statute is not limited solely to parents, however, and case law has established that the responsibility may be based on legal custody as well as “less structured relations” such as cohabitation with a parent of the child, so long as the defendant “established a continuing or regular supervisory or caretaker relationship” as opposed to more temporary or occasional care taking functions such as babysitting.

In the court’s opinion, the prosecution adequately proved beyond a reasonable doubt that the defendant had “assumed responsibility for the care of” the boys. The problem, however, was that the jurors were told that “under appropriate circumstances,” a person who has assumed responsibility for the care of a child could include a staff member of the school. As the court explained, without any explanation as to what those “circumstances” might be, the jurors were effectively left to create their own legal standards. Moreover, other aspects of the jury instructions diverged widely from the case law by suggesting that any school employee, even one with no responsibility for a child, could be included in the definition of a guardian.

An incorrect charge on an essential element of a crime is reversible error, and where inconsistent instructions are given, one right and one wrong, the courts have no way to determine which one the jury followed. That being the case here, the court had no choice but to reverse the defendant’s conviction.

 

 

 

Excerpt: The conviction of a high school baseball coach for endangering the welfare of ten children was irreparably tainted by faulty jury instructions, a New Jersey court ruled in October.
Keywords: second degree endangering the welfare of a child, legal duty, assumed responsibility, jury instructions, reversible error

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New Jersey court upholds increased penalties for violating DWI-based license suspensions

A defendant who was arrested in Ocean County in September 2011 for driving with a suspended license was properly charged with increased penalties that had gone into effect just several weeks earlier, a state appeals court held in November. The increased penalties applied to drivers whose licenses had been suspended or revoked based on multiple drunk driving convictions, and as the court explained, it made no difference whether the underlying license suspensions were imposed before or after the date when the penalties went into effect. State v. Carrigan, 2012 N.J. Super. LEXIS 178 (N.J. App. Div. Nov. 15, 2012).

The statute involved in this case, N.J.S.A. 2C:40-26(b), makes it a fourth degree crime to violate a license suspension or revocation which was imposed due to multiple prior convictions for driving while intoxicated or refusing to submit to blood alcohol testing. Before it was enacted, the offense was considered a non-criminal traffic violation and was subject to a sentence of 10 to 90 days in jail. The statute increased these penalties substantially, however, authorizing a jail sentence of up to 18 months and requiring a mandatory term of 180 days in prison.

Although the defendant argued that the statute was meant to apply prospectively–i.e., only to those drivers whose licenses were suspended after the law went into effect–the court found no support for such a limitation in the statutory language or legislative history. The defendant also raised a challenge under the ex post facto clauses of the state and federal constitutions, which are intended to prevent retroactive punishments for actions that were legal when committed. The court found no basis for any ex post facto violation, however, because the defendant was not being punished under the new law for his prior DWI and refusal offenses, but rather for the new and separate offense of driving without a license due to multiple prior DWIs.

As this case demonstrates, the consequences for drunk driving in New Jersey are very serious, especially for drivers with multiple prior DWIs. If you’ve been charged with a DWI/DUI and are concerned about limiting the penalties and protecting your driving privileges, contact an experienced New Jersey DWI attorney as soon as possible. If you need an attorney, call the law offices of Palumbo & Renaud at 908-337-7353 to schedule a free initial consultation and discuss the best strategies and defenses available in your case.

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Essex County politician arrested for drunk driving

Victor Cirilo, the president of the West Orange township council and the executive director of the Passaic Housing Authority, was arrested in November for driving while intoxicated. He was pulled over in Verona when officers noticed him driving erratically and was taken to police headquarters after failing a field sobriety test. In addition to being charged with a DWI, he was also charged with careless driving and refusing to take a breathalyzer.

A conviction for drunk driving in New Jersey results in serious penalties, including fines, possible jail time, and license suspensions. Drunk drivers may also be required to comply with community service requirements, install ignition interlock devices in their cars, or enroll in in-patient alcoholism treatment programs. The severity of these penalties depends primarily on whether the conviction is for a first time, second time, or subsequent DWI, but other factors, such as high blood alcohol levels, can also result in increased sentences. As in this case, drivers may also be subject to penalties for related offenses, such as careless driving and refusing to take a breath or blood alcohol test.

 

While drivers should be aware of drunk driving fines and penalties, it’s important to remember that DWIs often have broader life consequences. A person’s employment can be affected, as well as his or her reputation, especially when he or she is an elected official or public figure, as in this case. DWIs can also lead to increased car insurance costs and having a suspended license makes it more difficult to accomplish everyday activities like running errands, visiting friends and family, and getting to school or work.

 

 
The president of the West Orange township council was arrested in November for driving while intoxicated.

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New Jersey Supreme Court overturns conviction in drunk driving case due to violation of defendant’s right against self-incrimination

The New Jersey Supreme Court overturned a conviction in a drunk driving case in September after finding that the defendant’s statutory and constitutional privilege against self-incrimination had been violated. As a result, the charges against the defendant were reversed and remanded for a new trial.

The case, State v. Stas, involved two men who were involved in an automobile accident shortly after leaving a bar together. When police arrived at the scene, the defendant remained silent while the other man admitted to driving the vehicle. The defendant’s companion was then charged with a DWI while the defendant, who was not subjected to a breathalyzer or any field sobriety tests, was charged with allowing the other man, while intoxicated, to operate a vehicle under his custody and control.

At trial, both men testified that the defendant had actually been the driver of the vehicle, not his companion. The municipal court rejected this testimony, however, relying on the fact that the defendant had stood by in silence while his companion told police that he was the driver. The Appellate Division then affirmed, rejecting the defendant’s contention that the state’s evidence was insufficient to support his conviction for allowing an intoxicated driver to use the vehicle under defendant’s control.

On appeal to the state Supreme Court, the decision was reversed. As the court explained, the defendant was entitled to the protection of the constitutional, statutory and common law privilege against self-incrimination in the quasi-criminal proceedings before the municipal court, and it was error for the municipal court to use his silence as substantive evidence of his guilt.

Contact an Experienced DWI/DUI Attorney
If you’ve been charged with a drunk driving offense, contact an experienced DWI attorney as soon as possible. Your attorney may be able to get your charges reduced or dismissed, as in this case, by raising constitutional challenges or other arguments on your behalf. For more information about what a New Jersey DUI/DWI attorney can do for you, contact us today at 908-337-7353.

Source: State v. Stas, 2012 N.J. LEXIS 900

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