Stalking charges are rarely filed in New Jersey. Typically, stalking charges stem from a previous domestic relationship between two parties. This means that Stalking charges could fall under the category of Domestic Violence. Whether you are charged with stalking your ex-wife or former boyfriend, the penalties for stalking are severe and could result in your pretrial detention. If you have been arrested and charged with Stalking, harassment, aggravated assault, criminal mischief, terroristic threats or received a temporary restraining order, contact a Mount Holly Criminal Attorney today. New Jersey Bail Reform Guidelines allow Prosecutors to seek pretrial detention in certain criminal offenses, particularly those involving domestic violence. It is important that you have representation on your behalf for these pretrial detention hearings at the Burlington County Superior Court. For an immediate consultation with an attorney, please contact our office at (609) 850-8284. We can be reached 24/7 for your convenience.
The law that pertains to Stalking falls under N.J.S.A. 2C:12-10(b). Pursuant to this statute, the State is required to prove certain elements beyond a reasonable doubt in order to obtain a conviction. Typically, Stalking is a fourth degree criminal offense and it requires proof of the following two things:
The Defendant purposely or knowingly engaged in a “course of conduct” that was directed at the victim; AND
This conduct would cause a reasonable person to (a) fear for their safety; (b) fear for the safety of another; or (c) suffer emotional distress.
However, Stalking can be elevated into a third degree criminal offense when the same factors exist for a fourth degree charge (see above) and one of the following additional factors is present In order to be convicted of stalking in the third degree the prosecution must prove beyond a reasonable doubt one of the following elements:
Defendant violated an existing court order prohibiting such conduct (typically meaning that a Temporary Restraining Order, Final Restraining Order or No Contact Order was already in place)
This was the Defendant’s second or subsequent offense of stalking against the same victim
The Defendant was on parole or probation for a prior felony conviction at the time of the offense
What are NJ Stalking Penalties?
The penalties associated with Stalking charges will depend upon the degree of the charge (described above). Third Degree Stalking charges carry between three (3) and five (5) years in a New Jersey State Prison, a $15,000 fine, a No Contact Order, a period of probation and a criminal record. Conversely, Fourth Degree Stalking charge carry up to eighteen (18) months in a New Jersey State Prison, a $10,000 fine, a No Contact Order, a period of probation and a criminal record. can be either a third or fourth degree felony in New Jersey. These penalties are subject to judicial discretion and the defendant’s prior criminal history. You should consult with an attorney for more information on New Jersey’s Sentencing Guidelines.
Can I Get Pretrial Intervention for Stalking Charges?
New Jersey has multiple “Diversionary Programs” that are available to defendants facing criminal charges. For those individuals who have no prior indictable record you may be eligible for participation in Pretrial Intervention, commonly referred to as PTI. Under this program, you could be afforded a postponement of your case pending completion of a term of probation. Should you successfully comply with the terms of probation, then the Court can move to dismiss your charges entirely, without placing any criminal conviction on your record. This program is subject to the discretion of the Burlington County Prosecutor’s Office. Therefore, even certain eligible defendant’s may be rejected from admission.
Burlington Township NJ Stalking Charges
Whether you were the one charged or it was your child, sister, brother or significant other, it is important that you consult with an experienced criminal attorney about these Stalking charges. These types of cases is treated as an indictable felony offense and they can result in possible incarceration plus a criminal record. If you would like to speak with a Burlington County Criminal Attorney today about your charges, please contact our office directly at (609) 850-8284. The initial consultation is provided free of charge for your convenience. Please do not hesitate to contact our firm with any questions or concerns.
Our phones are answered 24 hours a day. We are available weekdays during business hours. We also meet with clients on evenings and weekends by request. We have four office locations conveniently located in Mount Laurel, Point Pleasant, Princeton and Middletown. All major credit cards are accepted.