Hackensack NJ Juvenile Simple Assault Lawyer
Juvenile Criminal Defense Attorney in Bergen County and New Jersey
Alissa Hascup is a renowned New Jersey criminal defense attorney who is dedicated to protecting the rights of juveniles, students, and young adults charged with crimes. As a former Municipal Prosecutor and Assistant County Prosecutor, Ms. Hascup has prosecuted hundreds of simple assault and aggravated assault cases, which provides her with a strategic advantage as she defends her clients. Her experience on the other side of the criminal justice system has helped her to achieve countless successful outcomes in courts from Middlesex County to Passaic County, and Bergen County to Essex County. She regularly battles for students at universities like Rutgers, Montclair State, Fairleigh Dickinson, and Seton Hall, as well as juveniles and other young adults. In fact, she was recently named among the Top 100 Criminal Trial Lawyers, by the National Trial Lawyers Association. To discuss your case with Ms. Hascup today and learn more about how she can help you preserve your future, contact her offices at 862-257-1200. She will be happy to answer your questions and provide you with a cost-free consultation.
New Jersey Simple Assault Charges – N.J.S.A. 2C:12-1
Simple assault is a criminal violation in New Jersey, codified in section N.J.S.A. 2C:12-1 of the State’s criminal code. Simple assault is typically classified as a disorderly persons offense but it is considered a petty disorderly persons offense if it occurs in a mutual fight or scuffle. In other cases, simple assault can be elevated to a more serious charge of aggravated assault; specifically, when the victim is a law enforcement officer or another public servant.
Simple assault charges encompass a wide variety of conduct. You may be charged with simple assault for:
- Attempting to cause bodily injury to another person, purposely, knowingly, or recklessly.
- Negligently causing bodily injury to another person with a deadly weapon; or
- Attempting, by physical menace, to put another person in fear of imminent serious bodily injury.
Notice that you need not actually inflict injury on another person to be charged with simple assault. Engaging in behavior that places the person in reasonable fear that serious injury is about to occur is sufficient to warrant these charges.
Juvenile Charges for Simple Assault in New Jersey
If you are charged with simple assault and you are not yet 18, you are legally considered a juvenile in New Jersey, which means that your case is governed by the procedural rules of the juvenile justice system. First and foremost, your case will likely be adjudicated in the Family Division of the Superior Court in your county of residence. In other words, if you are accused of committing a crime in Essex County, but you live in Bergen County, you will appear before a Family Court judge in the Bergen County Superior Court. At this proceeding, you are required to have an attorney who will represent you. An experienced juvenile defense lawyer can serve as a vital asset to the success of your case.
If you are found guilty of simple assault, you are technically adjudicated delinquent, which is similar to a criminal conviction for an adult. However, your sentence may be very different from that of an adult defendant convicted of the same crime. In juvenile court, the overarching legal standard is the best interests of the child. This means that the judge will consider a variety of factors before determining the appropriate sentence in your case. At sentencing, judges evaluate factors including: the nature and circumstances of the offense; your age, previous record, and social services received; your unique needs; and the likelihood that you will respond well to rehabilitative measures. Potential sentences in juvenile cases include: probation, community service, mental health counseling, detention (incarceration), drug rehabilitation treatment, suspension of driving privileges, or restitution. In order to secure the best outcome, it is highly advisable to have an attorney representing your best interests before sentencing.
Simple Assault Charges for College Students and Young Adults in NJ
If you are 18 or older and charged with simple assault in New Jersey, you will be required to appear in the local Municipal Court in the municipality in which the charges were filed. In other words, if you were charged with simple assault at the Rutgers Football Stadium in Piscataway, your case will be heard and decided in Piscataway Municipal Court. As mentioned above, simple assault is typically classified as a disorderly persons offense, which may result in the following penalties:
- A sentence to serve up to 6 months in the county jail
- A fine of up to $1,000
- A conviction on your criminal record
If the simple assault charges arose during a mutual fight or scuffle, it is considered a petty disorderly persons offense, which may result in:
- A sentence to serve up to 30 days in the county jail
- A fine of up to $500
- A conviction on your criminal record
Notice that in either case, a conviction for simple assault will result in a charge on your criminal record, which will appear on a background check in the future. When you are applying for admission at institutions of higher education, seeking jobs, or pursuing other opportunities, such a conviction can be perceived as a major red flag. You may be able to have your record expunged; however, the conviction will always appear on a background check if you apply for a job in government, law enforcement, or the U.S. military.
Contact a Fort Lee NJ Juvenile Simple Assault Attorney Today
If you are a juvenile, college student, or other young adult charged with simple assault in New Jersey, it is critical to protect yourself against criminal prosecution and disciplinary action at your school. Contact The Law Offices of Alissa Hascup to discuss your case and receive a free consultation. With offices conveniently located in Hackensack, Little Falls, Camden, and Morristown, we defend clients in courtrooms and education proceedings across the state. Simply call 862-257-1200 today.