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New Brunswick Obstructing the Administration of Law Attorney
A Former New Brunswick Municipal Court Prosecutor is Ready To Defend Your Obstruction or Hindering Offense in New Brunswick New Jersey
The criminal offense of obstructing the administration of law occurs when an individual engages in conduct intended to prevent law enforcement from carrying out an investigation, search, arrest or any other function.
Generally, obstruction requires some intentional act that in some way obstructs law enforcement from carrying out their duties. Police and prosecutors are prone to overreach by filing this charge improperly in New Brunswick and other area municipalities.
If you have been charged with obstructing the administration of law in New Brunswick, New Jersey, our criminal defense attorneys have the qualities to protect your interests. We are a team of accomplished lawyers and former prosecutors, including one who has served in the New Brunswick Municipal Court and another in the Middlesex County Prosecutor’s Office. To discuss our arrest with a savvy lawyer at our firm, contact our New Brunswick Office. An attorney can be reached for a free consultation immediately by calling 732-246-7126.
New Brunswick Obstruction Offense
A New Brunswick obstruction offense arises out of N.J.S.A 2C:29-1 and is very similar to a hindering or resisting arrest charge. Violation of this law is predicated on an individual preventing a law enforcement officer from investigating a possible criminal act, making an arrest, conducting a search or otherwise exercising his/her lawful duties. In order to be convicted of obstructing the administration of law, the prosecutor must prove that the actor knowingly and purposely engaged in conduct to prevent law enforcement from exercising duties. Furthermore, it’s necessary to show that you actually impeded the officers from performing their duties. Normally, this requires direct action, such as the use of force or violence. It’s not enough to show that you said something negative to them or that you engaged them in a hostile or antagonistic conversation.
If obstructing occurs while law enforcement is trying to investigate or engage in duties associated with an indictable crime (i.e. first degree, second degree, third degree or fourth degree), obstruction will be charged as a fourth degree crime. If the violation is committed when law enforcement is trying to investigate a disorderly persons offense (a misdemeanor), the offense will also be charged as a disorderly persons offense.
The penalties for obstructing the administration of law or justice in New Brunswick hinge on the grade of the charge. A disorderly persons offense for obstructing falls within the jurisdiction of New Brunswick Municipal Court and can result in a fine of up to $1,000, up to six months in the county jail and an assortment of other penalties. If the conviction involves a fourth degree crime for obstruction, the penalties include a potential fine of $10,000 and up to 18 months in state prison.
Improperly Charged With Obstructing the Administration of Law in New Brunswick, NJ
While it is probably not advisable to give the police a piece of your mind while they are performing their duties, you do have the right to do so. You do not give up your freedom of speech when you are interacting with a police officer.
The courts have consistently ruled that the first amendment applies to individuals who are interacting with law enforcement, even if that interaction includes rude or offensive conduct, as long as you are not preventing them from carrying out their duties.
So, unless you obstruct their duties by use of force or violence, law enforcement must act with a certain degree of tolerance when interacting with you. This does not, however, you mean that you won’t be arrested for obstruction.
New Brunswick NJ Obstruction Defense Lawyer
If you are arrested for obstruction, it would be wise to employ an experienced defense lawyer. The attorneys at the Law Offices of Jonathan F. Marshall know the obstruction law inside and out, as well as the defense that may be enlisted on your behalf. We utilize our knowledge and skill so that you are assured that the optimum outcome is achieved in your obstructing case. To discuss the facts and circumstances confronting you with an attorney, contact us anytime 24/7. Lawyers are available now to assist you at 732-246-2176.