Domestic Violence in New Jersey

Of all the criminal charges in New Jersey, domestic violence may be the most misunderstood. This is concerning because domestic violence matters can have very substantial and long lasting consequences for those charged with and convicted of domestic violence in New Jersey. Understanding what domestic violence means in New Jersey is vitally important. Domestic violence is defined as the occurrence of certain acts, such as assault, harassment, criminal restraint and stalking inflicted on a person of 18 years of age or older. Furthermore, the acts are inflicted by the victim’s current or former spouse/ partner, or a current or former member of the victim’s household.

Legislative findings on Domestic Violence 2C:25-18

The New Jersey Legislature has declared domestic violence to be an extremely serious crime, from which victims deserve maximum protection under the law. As such, law enforcement officers responding to domestic violence calls are mandated to take immediate actions to protect the victim. Although domestic violence is private in nature, the Legislature views this form of abuse as a crime against society due to its frequent occurrence, especially among women, the elderly and the disabled.

In the News

Recently in the news, Ray Rice avoided jail time when he was accepted for pretrial intervention as a first-time offender. That would become more difficult if legislation co-sponsored by Assemblywoman Gabriela Mosquera, D-Camden, becomes law.

According to TheDailyJournal.com, the measure would make assault against a victim of domestic violence in New Jersey a third-degree crime, with real possibility of a prison sentence. It would also mean someone accused of domestic violence in New Jersey would have to enter a guilty plea before being considered for pretrial intervention (PTI).

Stats

The latest statistics provided by the New Jersey State Police summarize 2012. A full report can be found at NJSP.org.

• Domestic violence increased by 7% from 2011 to 2012.
• Assaults accounted for 42% and harassment accounted for 43% of the reported offenses.
• The most frequent day of domestic violence occurrences was Sunday.
• And for the 13th consecutive year, the most frequent hours of domestic violence incidents were between 8pm and midnight.
• Children were involved or present during 29% of all domestic violence offenses.
• Females were victims in 75% of all domestic violence offenses.
• Alcohol and/or drugs were involved in 27% of the reported offenses.

If you, or someone you know, have been charged with domestic violence in New Jersey, it is critical to get legal advice immediately. Contact the attorneys at Villani & DeLuca, P.C. at (732) 965-3350 for a free consultation today. We represent clients throughout Monmouth County and Ocean County, New Jersey.

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