Author Michael Noonan
Posted June 16, 2017
Category Sex Crimes Defense
Wall New Jersey Criminal Defense Attorneys serving Monmouth County, Ocean County, Middlesex County and all surrounding NJ areas.
Posted: August 13, 2009
A female New Jersey High School teacher from Howell Township New Jersey recently received a five year probationary term from a Middlesex County Judge for having a sexual relationship with one of her seventeen year old male students.
The teacher waived her right to have the case presented to grand jury and plead guilty to a fourth degree count of cruelty and neglect. Apparently the teacher was 35 or 36 at the time the sexual relationship with the seventeen year old student.
This case highlights one of the potential advantages to negotiating at the early stages of a case. I do not know the strengths and weaknesses of the State’s case but the plea allowed the defendant to avoid a potential indictment for second degree sexual assault. Perhaps even more importantly, the defendant avoided the implications of Megan’s law and parole supervision for life.
Technically, a person in New Jersey can be charged with second degree sexual assault (N.J.S.A. 2C: 14-2c.) where he or she commits an act of sexual penetration with another person who is at least 16 but less than 18 years of age and the actor (defendant) has supervisory power over the victim by virtue of his or her occupational status (teacher would qualify).
There are many reasons why the State would consider amending a sexual assault charge to Child Abuse/Neglect including strength of the evidence against the defendant, and the input of the victim and his or her family. The bottom line is that the earlier the negotiation process begins (i.e. pre-grand jury) the more opportunities a defendant may have for successfully resolving his or her case.
If you or a family member has been accused or charged with a sex crime, call an attorney at Clark, Clark & Noonan, LLC today for a free consultation. Our attorneys are former sex crimes prosecutors. We have the ability to exploit our knowledge for your benefit to ensure that your rights are protected and that you have an effective trial defense at your disposal if you choose to exercise your right to a trial.
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