Criminal Defense Attorneys in Ocean County, New Jersey
Pursuant to New Jersey Statute 2C:12-1(c), there is a criminal offense known as Assault by Auto. This serious crime usually occurs when reckless driving or driving while intoxicated (DWI) results in the injury of another. Assault by Auto charges are very serious in New Jersey and are often categorized as indictable offenses. However, penalties upon conviction will differ in severity depending on the circumstances of the alleged assault. Nevertheless, an Assault by Auto conviction will result in a permanent criminal record and most very likely license suspension, incarceration, fines, community service, and possible jail time. An experienced criminal defense attorney will challenge the state’s case by initially working with prosecution to secure a plea to a downgraded offense or even a dismissal of the charge entirely.
Need a Lawyer for an Assault by Auto Charge in Ocean County NJ
At The Law Offices of Proetta & Oliver, our Ocean County criminal defense lawyers have successfully defended thousands of clients against criminal and municipal charges throughout Ocean County and New Jersey. We represent defendants charged with Assault by Auto in Ocean County and surrounding areas including Lakehurst, Little Egg Harbor, Tuckerton, Beachwood, New Egypt, and Long Beach Township. To learn more about how our Ocean County Assault by Auto defense attorneys can assist you by building a case strategy customized to the facts of your case, contact us at our offices in Toms River at (848) 238-2100. Initial consultations are always free. Our representatives are available 24/7 to answer your call.
New Jersey Assault by Auto Law N.J.S.A. 2C:12-1(c)
The New Jersey assault by auto statute 2C:12-1c is provided below, in pertinent part, for your reading convenience. This article goes on to describe how an assault by auto charge is graded for the severity of the crime.
N.J.S.A. 2C:12-1c. Assault by Auto
(1) A person is guilty of assault by auto or vessel when the person drives a vehicle or vessel recklessly and causes either serious bodily injury or bodily injury to another. Assault by auto or vessel is a crime of the fourth degree if serious bodily injury results and is a disorderly persons offense if bodily injury results.
What is Assault by Auto?
The general elements of assault by auto are that that the defendant (1) was the operator of the motor vehicle; (2) that they drove recklessly or engaged in reckless conduct; (3) which caused an accident; and (4) and an injury resulted. However, under the New Jersey law, the charge can vary in severity or “degree” depending on all other factors surrounding the incident.
Assault by Auto Disorderly Persons Offense – this results when the victim sustained “bodily injury” or minor injury.
Fourth Degree Assault by Assault – the charge is upgraded to a felony when the victim suffers “serious bodily injury”.
Third Degree Assault by Auto – it is a third degree offense is the victim suffered serious bodily injury from a DWI-related accident.
Second Degree Assault by Auto – the charge is upgraded to a second degree crime if the DWI-related accident took place within a school zone.
Where Do I Go To Court for Assault by Auto Charge in Ocean County?
If the Defendant is charged with assault by auto in the second, third or fourth degree then their charges will be sent to the Ocean County Superior Court, which is located in Toms River for disposition. The Ocean County Prosecutor’s Office will be in charge of prosecuting the case for the State and in some circumstances, it is possible to convince them to downgrade and remand the felony charges back to the local municipal court. However, if the Defendant is charged with a disorderly persons offense assault by auto charge then their case will be sent directly to the local municipal court for disposition. If the Defendant is also charged with a traffic offense like driving while intoxicated as well, then the assault by auto charge will dictate what court retains jurisdiction over those charges.
Contact our Lacey Township NJ Assault by Auto Lawyers for Free Consultation
The penalties for an Assault by Auto conviction usually hinge upon the severity and scope of the victim’s injury and whether the injury suffered is classified as a “serious bodily injury.” In cases involving DWI charges, the degree of the driver’s intoxication and the state’s ability (or inability) to prove the intoxication can often be contested as well. An experienced criminal defense lawyer will utilize the necessary proofs needed for a conviction as leverage for negotiating with the prosecutor to resolve the case. Our experienced team of Ocean County criminal defense attorneys understands how to challenge weaknesses in the state’s case against you. We will then work with the prosecution for a downgrade or dismissal. In the event that a plea negotiation is not reached, we are prepared to litigate aggressively on your behalf. With offices in Toms River, our attorneys regularly appear in courts in Manchester, Jackson Township, Brick, Lacey Township, Stafford, Lakewood, and throughout Ocean County. We offer free initial consultations for prospective clients so contact us today at (848) 238-2100 to speak with a criminal defense lawyer who can answer your questions and address your 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. All major credit cards are accepted.