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North Brunswick NJ Harassment Defense Lawyer
Harassment is an offense that our attorneys defend in North Brunswick and other municipal courts in Middlesex County. Whether filed in conjunction with a retraining order, as the result of a neighborhood dispute, conflict between co-workers or any other scenario, this offense is commonplace in Old Bridge, South Brunswick, Middlesex, Woodbridge and North Brunswick. The crucial point to keep in mind for those charged with violating N.J.S.A. 2C:33-4 is to realize that this is a serious criminal charge that can impact your future if handled incorrectly. Hiring the right lawyer to defend you is probably the best approach you can take to insure that you move on from this offense as seamlessly as possible. Our defense staff includes former prosecutors with over a century of experience helping those arrested for harassment and assault offenses. To speak to an attorney with the knowledge necessary to effectively defend you, contact our Woodbridge Office at 732-634-0700.
Charged With Harassment in Middlesex County
The charge of harassment is very similar to disorderly conduct except that 2C:33-4 targets private conflict. This violation is committed if, with the purpose to harass, an individual does the following:
a. Makes, or causes to be made, a communication or communications anonymously or at extremely inconvenient hours, or in offensively coarse language, or any other manner likely to cause annoyance or alarm;
b. Subjects another to striking, kicking, shoving, or other offensive touching, or threatens to do so; or
c. Engages in any other course of alarming conduct or of repeatedly committed acts with purpose to alarm or seriously annoy such other person. A communication under subsection a. may be deemed to have been made either at the place where it originated or at the place where it was received.
Harassment Offense Explained. To best understand how this offense works, we need to break down each variety of harassment individually. Below is a discussion of each pedigree, including what the prosecutor in Old Bridge or another town must show in order to convict you under 2C:33-4. Please be reminded that in each instances the conduct must be with the purpose to harass in order to form a proper basis for a violation of this statute.
- Improper Communication. A communication results in a violation of subsection (a) where it is made anonymously or at inconvenient hours in order to harass the recipient. Someone can also commit this form of harassment by using offensively course language for this purpose.
- Striking, Shoving or Offensive Touching. Harassment for making improper physical contact under subsection (b) contemplates something short of bodily injury since that would result in a simple assault. The touching for purposes of harassment falls short of this threshold and must cause alarm or annoyance.
- Alarming Conduct or Repeated Acts. To violate subsection (c) the conduct must be intended to cause serious annoyance or alarm.
Harassment is typically a petty disorderly persons offense that will be handled in municipal court in like the one in South Brunswick NJ. However, if the defendant is on parole or probation for an indictable offense, the charge is enhanced to a Fourth Degree crime. This means that if you harass someone in Woodbridge and are on probation, for example, the case will have to be sent to Superior Court in New Brunswick since you are now talking about a felony case. The penalties for harassment hinge on which grade of offense is involved. A petty disorderly persons offense for harassment carries up to 30 days in the county jail and a $500 fine. You will also have a criminal record that will appear on background checks. Fourth degree harassment results in a fine of up to $10,000 and 18 months in state prison.
Old Bridge NJ Harassment Attorney
If you have been charged with harassment in Old Bridge, our lawyers can help you escape a criminal record and other penalties. We are the largest criminal defense firm in the area and have handled countless harassment charges in Middlesex County including in South Brunswick, Old Bridge, Woodbridge, and other locales. To speak to a lawyer immediately in a free consultation, call our East Brunswick Office at 732-227-1200.