Waiver of Juvenile to Adult Court

N.J.S.A. 2A:4A-26 allows a prosecutor such as one in the Somerset County or Hunterdon County prosecutor’s office to make a motion to have a juvenile and his criminal charge treated in the same manner as an adult. If the motion is granted by a judge sitting in the Juvenile Division in either county, the case is transferred to the Criminal Division in either Somerville or Flemington. A juvenile is subject to much more severe penalties when this occurs as a primary focus of the adult system is to punish rather than help a juvenile. A juvenile case is extremely delicate when it involves a serious offense like robbery, aggravated assault or the like as a waiver motion can result in years of imprisonment if it is granted. Our attorneys have decades of experience defending juvenile charges and can insure that your son or daughter is afforded maximum protection against being waived to adult court. Whether your child was arrested in Hillsborough, Warren, North Plainfield or another municipality, the lawyers at The Law Offices of Jonathan F. Marshall have the skills needed to protect your child. Call a juvenile attorney at our firm at 908-722-1011 for a free consultation now.

To be “waived” to adult criminal court, several criterion must be met and proven by the prosecution under N.J.S.A. 2A:4A-26 including:

1. The juvenile must be 14 years of age or older,

2. There must be probable cause to believe that the juvenile committed any of the following acts:

1. Homicide (except death by auto), Drug induced deaths, Armed Robbery, Carjacking, Aggravated Sexual Assault, Sexual Assault, Aggravated Assault (Serious Bodily Injury), Kidnapping, Aggravated Arson, Gang Criminality, or Promotion of Organized Street Crime; or

2. Any crime committed at a time when the juvenile had previously been adjudicated delinquent or convicted on the basis of being an above named offense; or

3. A crime committed at a time when the juvenile had been sentenced and confined in an adult penal institution; or

4. An offense against a person committed in an aggressive, violent, and willful manner, other than the above named offenses (includes Unlawful Possession of a Firearm, destructive device, or other prohibited weapon, arson, or death by auto if the juvenile under the influence of drugs or alcohol); or

5. Leader of a Narcotics Trafficking Network, Maintaining a Drug Production Facility, or Possession with Intent to Distribute/Distribution of CDS (Heroin, Cocaine, Marijuana, etc.); or

6. Crimes that a part of a continuing pattern of criminal activity with two or more people and the circumstances show that the juvenile has knowing devoted himself to criminal activity as a source of livelihood; or

7. Conspiracies or Attempts to commit offenses in A, D, and E; or

8. Theft of an automobile; or

9. Possession of a firearm with the purpose to use it unlawfully against another, or any aggravated assault, aggravated criminal sexual contact, burglary, or escape while possessing a firearm; or

10. Computer criminal activity of the first or second degree.

3. Waiver motions must be filed within 30 day of the complaint and can very rarely be extended.

Experienced Juvenile Waiver Defense Attorneys in Bridgewater NJ

Our juvenile lawyers often utilize N.J.S.A. 2A:4A-26(e) to combat a waiver motion. This statute provides a basis for denial of a waiver motion if it is shown that there is a probability of rehabilitation of the juvenile prior to his/her reaching the age of 19 and there is no overriding reason for the waiver otherwise. When this burden is satisfied and the waiver motion denied, there is typically a dramatic change in the severity of the penalties and period of incarceration that may be imposed. For this reason, hiring a seasoned juvenile defense attorney is pivotal to the protection of your juvenile. The attorneys at The Law Offices of Jonathan F. Marshall are here to provide this level of representation. To discuss your case with a member of our team, call our Bridgewater juvenile firm at 908-722-1011.