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Entering a Plea
New Brunswick New Jersey Criminal Defense Lawyer
The Law Offices of Jonathan F. Marshall defends criminal charges like including possession of ecstasy, distribution of prescription drugs, and aggravated assault in Middlesex County. A defense lawyer at the firm, including one of our former prosecutors, has what it takes to competently represent you in Woodbridge, East Brunswick, Edison, Plainsboro or anywhere else in the county. In fact, the attorneys at the firm have over 100 years of success stories between them in securing favorable pleas on behalf of our clients. For a free consultation with a seasoned attorney on our team, call our New Brunswick Office at 732-246-7126.
Criminal Legal Process: Entering a Plea
Following a status conference or pre-trial conference, the parties may reach a plea agreement prior to going to trial. This plea agreement may include a guilty plea to a downgraded charge or a guilty plea to one of the charges and a dismissal of other charges. Moreover, a guilty plea will typically include a sentencing recommendation to the Judge concerning potential jail time.
If both sides reach a plea agreement, the guilty plea must be entered on the record before the Court. Once the parties reach a plea agreement, the Court will schedule a hearing whereby the defendant will plead guilty. This guilty plea must also include a factual basis for the underlying offense. For example, if the defendant is pleading guilty to aggravated assault, the defendant must appear in court, enter a plea of guilty, and tell the court how and when the assault was committed. This is known as a “factual basis” for the plea. Finally, the defendant must also fill out forms related to the plea showing that the defendant understands that he or she is giving up the right to a trial and that the plea of guilty is a knowing and voluntary plea.
Following the plea, the Court will prepare a pre-sentence report so that the Judge is fully informed of the defendant’s background, prior record, etc. when sentencing the defendant. The Court will then schedule the defendant for sentencing. As you can see, the defendant is not sentenced at the time he or she enters a plea of guilty. This is done at a later date.
If you would like to discuss your charge in Piscataway, Metuchen, North Brunswick or another town with a knowledge criminal lawyer at The Law Offices of Jonathan F. Marshall, do not hesitate to contact our firm. Attorneys are available 24/7 to discuss your case in a free consultation. Call 732-246-7126 for immediate assistance.