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“Thanks Tara for always believing in me and making me feel like I was your only client. You made the impossible possible. Forever grateful.”

- Gabriel V.
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What is Pre-Trial Intervention and More Importantly Is it The Right Choice?

Pre Trial Intervention, often referred to as “PTI,” is a diversionary probationary program offered at the Superior Court level in the county courts.  It can be a way to avoid a criminal record.  Most of the time, you enter the program without ever pleading guilty and even if a guilty plea is a contingency to acceptance, you will never be sentenced or convicted of a crime if you successfully complete the program.

Pursuant to the statute, the minimum length of time for probation imposed is a one year time period.  However, per the statutory guidelines, you can ask your probation officer for an early release from the program as early as six months.  The judge determines the length of time that is initially imposed, and usually community service is a condition, although sometimes this condition can be waived.   Upon acceptance into the program, you are to remain arrest free and if all other conditions are met you will successfully complete the program.

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https://www.monmouthcountycriminaldefenselawyer.com/wp-content/uploads/sites/409/2019/09/Tara-See.hear_.now--240x300.jpgAsbury Park criminal defense attorney Tara Breslow-Testa

Over the weekend of September 21-22, the sea.hear.now Festival welcomed more than 35,000 people to Asbury Park. From sea to Shore, Asbury Park rocked and resonated with music from dozens of bands headlined by the B52s, the Dropkick Murphys, Joan Jett and the Blackhearts and the Dave Matthews Band. Lots of live music, but also a surf contest, art demonstrations, food and drink. 

The sea.hear.now Festival was the place to eat, drink, rock out and be merry – say goodbye to summer and hello to fall.

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DISORDERLY CONDUCT AT THE JERSEY SHORE CAN HAVE SERIOUS CONSEQUENCES. 

Sea Girt is a popular Jersey Shore place to eat drink and be merry. But if you get too merry and cross the line into behavior that is considered disorderly conduct you might need the services of a lawyer.

Sea Girt, Belmar, Lake Como disorderly conduct attorney Tara Breslow-Testa is who you should call if cited or arrested for “causing public inconvenience, annoyance or alarm, or  recklessly creating a risk thereof.” All disorderly conduct cases go to court and some end up better than others.

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In this two-minute video, Monmouth County drug court attorney Tara Breslow-Testa discusses the pros and cons of Drug Court and explains it’s for those who are serious about escaping their drug addiction – and not just for someone evading jail.

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A New Jersey Case Laid a Foundation for Cyber Harassment/Stalking Law

“…the Internet and related technology have also become new mediums for misconduct, in that communications via the Internet can be used to threaten, harass, intimidate, and cause harm to others.”

– Patricia R. Recupero, JD, MD (2008)

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Sexual harassment is something no worker should have to tolerate. Your job is to do your job, not be your boss’ sexual conquest or target for inappropriate, crude language or physical contact. You should be given respect at work, not a work atmosphere that turns your stomach. If severe enough, sexual harassment can be the subject of a civil lawsuit against a current or former employer.

The #MeToo movement is the most recent public push to publicize and end sexual harassment. It started with the exposure of Hollywood executives’ desire to manipulate and sexually exploit actresses and spread to high ranking members of the media and other industries.

Though this effort is relatively new, discrimination based on sex in the workplace was forbidden by federal law (known as Title VII) in 1964 and sexual harassment was recognized as a cause of action by the U.S. Supreme Court in 1986. Sexual harassment is considered to be a type of sex discrimination.

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Prior to 2017, every criminal defendant in the state had a constitutional right to pre-conviction bail. After an arrest, a judge would set a monetary bail amount in each case. The defendant could post bail with cash or with a bond. If the person couldn’t afford either, he or she would stay in jail until the resolution of their trial. This resulted in people stuck in jail, not because they were a danger to society but because they were poor.

New Jersey’s Bail Reform and Speedy Trial Act changed this system. This act gives significant importance to the risk to the community when a determination on releasing the defendant is made. Additionally, the court takes into account:

  • The offense
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New Jersey’s highest court has determined that juvenile sex offenders will no longer be held on the state’s sex offender registry for life.  New Jersey, which pioneered the sex offender registry, intended on utilizing this tool in an effort to protect community members and their families from potential harm. The Supreme Court unanimously determined that placing such requirements on individuals directly violates their due process rights under the Constitution. It was determined that requiring a juvenile offender to remain on the state’s sex offender registry greatly inhibits their ability to rehabilitate and integrate back into society as they make their way into adulthood.

The landmark Megan’s Law, which initiated the sex offender registry, was enacted in 1994. In 2002, New Jersey adopted federal law which placed much more stringent punishments upon sex offenders including the lifetime registry requirement. The new legislation requires all sex offenders to register as a sex offender; however, it also allows the individual the ability to appeal if they were convicted as a juvenile. In these cases, the individual will appear in front of a judge who will determine if the offender “has been offense-free and does not likely pose a societal risk” after 15 years. In revising the 2002 additions to Megan’s Law, it became apparent that by not allowing juvenile offenders to be removed from the registry, it assumed that they posed a threat to society indefinitely. Many who had been branded by their previous actions would suffer a great deal of trouble traveling and advancing in their career. Attorneys have argued that this is a mental health issue as research suggests a low recidivism rate for those who commit these crimes at a young age.

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When You Need a Criminal Defense Attorney For Belmar and Lake Como

Summertime, and the living is frenzied. Belmar is jumping, and spirits in Lake Como are high. Maybe a little too high, and that can lead to municipal or superior court, and that can lead to a need for representation – to keep the summer fun flowing.

During the summer, Belmar and Lake Como are two places along the Jersey Shore where many citizens get away from the hot inland turf and get loose near the sunny surf. Some people eat, drink and get a little too merry, and the local police are kept busy with arrests for underage drinking, fake identification, ordinance violations, simple and aggravated assault, criminal trespass, outstanding warrants and interference with business.

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When your child is arrested in NJ, it can be a frightening time.  

From working with countless parents, I know how unsettling it is to receive a phone call informing you that your child has been arrested or the police are asking for them to be questioned regarding a criminal charge. A tornado of thoughts and concerns are sure to grip the parent as well as the child.

Juveniles can be charged with the same statutory offenses as adults and the seriousness of the offense dictates where the matter is heard.  Often times an experienced criminal lawyer can avoid the matter being presented to a judge in a formal proceeding and instead have a referee or the Juvenile Conference Committee (JCC) hear the matter.  If your son or daughter is charged with possession of less than 50 grams of marijuana under N.J.S.A. 2C:35-10(a)(4), it may be possible to avoid a record and enter into a deferred disposition. If your child has been charged with shoplifting there are ways an experienced criminal lawyer can avoid serious consequences.  It is not uncommon for good kids to get into a fight and be charged with simple or aggravated assault. In these and other matters, a deferred disposition is oftentimes a good way for a child to be given a second chance.