Princeton Harassment Lawyer
There are certain things you should never do in Princeton New Jersey or anywhere else if you are angry or upset. Sending nasty or repeated text messages or making telephone calls of a similar nature is one of them since this can lead to a criminal offense for harassment. Whether directed at someone you fought with at work, a teacher who gave you a failing grade or your fiancée who decided to break up with you, an emotional outburst, either in person or through another format, can have significant consequences when it results in harassment charges. Although you might not think it is serious because it is only pending in Princeton Municipal Court, a conviction will leave you with a record and can even results in jail so hiring a skilled lawyers is important.
The criminal attorney you choose to defend your harassment charge in Princeton needs to be capable of aggressively pursuing all defenses and strategies to give you the best chance of avoiding the consequences of a conviction. The attorneys at the Law Offices of Jonathan F. Marshall bring 100 years of collective experience as seasoned criminal defense lawyers and former prosecutors to work on your behalf. Our attorneys devote their practices exclusively to criminal defense in Princeton Municipal Court, the Mercer County Superior Court, as well as in criminal courts throughout the state. They know the law, are respected trial lawyers and are dedicated to achieving the best result for you. To speak to a lawyer on our team free of charge, contact our Princeton office today at (609) 683-8102.Harassment Offense in Princeton New Jersey
N.J.S.A. 2C:33-4 defines the crime of harassment as engaging in one or more of the following prohibited activities or behaviors:
- Making, or causing to be made, communications at extremely inconvenient times or communicating anonymously with another person or using offensively coarse language to annoy or alarm the person.
- Kicking, shoving, striking or offensive touching committed or threatened against another person.
- Engaging in a course of conduct intended to alarm or to seriously annoy another person.
The content of phone calls, text messages and other communications are not the only thing police and prosecutors look at when someone complains about being harassed. Investigators look at the time, frequency and content of the communications when deciding whether to arrest and charge someone with a Princeton harassment offense.
When the prohibited conduct of N.J.S.A. 2C:33-4 is directed toward a person falling under the protection of N.J.S.A. 2C:25-19, the Prevention of Domestic Violence Act, it becomes a domestic violence incident. Persons protected by the PDCA include parents, spouse or former spouse, your child, parent of your child or someone you dated. You can find additional information about this subject at Princeton Domestic Violence Charges.
A domestic violence incident gives judges the authority to issue a restraining order protecting the victim from further harm. A restraining order prevents you from contacting the victim and, if you and the victim lived together at the time of the incident, it can prevent you from returning to your home. Violating the conditions contained in a restraining order is an additional charge of criminal contempt for which you can be arrested and, if convicted, subjected to penalties at sentencing.Penalties for a Princeton Harassment Charge
Harassment is a petty disorderly persons offense, which is the equivalent of a misdemeanor in states other than New Jersey. N.J.S.A. 2C:33-4 allows judge confine you to the Mercer County Correction Center for up to 30 days and impose a fine not to exceed $500. A harassment offense can be charged and punished as an indictable crime of the fourth degree, a felony, under the following circumstances:
- Harassment committed by someone while on probation or parole for an indictable offense is punishable by up to 18 months in prison and a fine.
- Some who commits harassment in violation of N.J.S.A. 2C:33-4 while in jail or prison on an indictable offense can be sentenced to serve 18 months in prison and pay a fine.
A permanent criminal record that can prevent you from getting a job is a high price to pay for allowing your emotions to get the better of you. This should be reason enough for you to make certain that you hire a skilled defense attorney to defend you against your Princeton harassment charges. The prosecutor in Princeton Municipal Court must prove this case and our accomplished attorneys will ensure that a wrench is thrown into this effort. The lawyers at the Law Offices of Jonathan F. Marshall aggressively target the evidence and other aspects of the prosecution case to weaken it, so you can avoid a conviction. A lawyer is available 24/7 to be there when you need us by calling our Princeton office at (609) 683-8102 for a free consultation.