Aggravated Assault Law in NJ Today
The NJ law regarding assault is virtually identical for both minor and adult offenders. Aggravated assault charges more than likely are brought when there has been bodily harm committed against a person, intent to cause bodily harm, use of a weapon in an attempt to cause harm, or an assault of a public representative, official or police, fire or EMT officer. All of these classifications of assault fall under N.J.S.A. 2C:12-1 and can involve one or more of the above scenarios. However, in the state of NJ it makes no difference if a minor in Toms River committed assault or an adult in Red Bank committed the assault. The law is the same for both offenders and the penalties will depend on the seriousness of the situation, not on the age of the assaulter.
Aggravated Assault and NJ Juveniles Today
If your child has been charged with assault in NJ and if he or she has been found delinquent, which is the juvenile term for guilty, then the court will issue a consequence. Courts in Point Pleasant, Long Branch and Asbury Park, just like all other towns in NJ, base their consequences on factors related to the age of the minor and any past offenses or charges, and then select an appropriate punishment. N.J.S.A. 2A:4A-43, 2A:4A-44 and 2A:4A-48 are the New Jersey statues that outline the punishments for the charge of assault.
Lesser punishments for adolescents can involve community service, parent supervision or monitoring, or registration and attendance at a juvenile detention center in New Jersey. For first time offenders in Brick, Red Bank and other areas of Monmouth and Ocean County, these punishments are usually severe enough to ensure the youth no longer engages in unlawful behavior.
However, higher level aggravated assault, such as assault with a weapon, or if it is not the child's first offense, has much stricter and harsher consequence for the juvenile involved. N.J.S.A. 2A:4A-44(d)(1) spells out the maximum sentencing terms for juveniles who are charged with aggravated assault. If it is assault in the fourth degree, the maximum sentence is one year. If it is assault in the third degree, the maximum sentence is two years and if it is assault in the second degree, the maximum sentence is three years.
Since these sentences are to serve time in juvenile detention centers and not prisons, the ultimate goal of these sentences is hopefully recovery for the youth and eventual reintegration into a society of his or her peers. The time spent in the detention center is meant to rehabilitate the minor child so that they do not continue on this path as an adult.
However, in some instances, your child can be held pending the outcome of his or her disposition. If your child has been charged with assault and the court believes that the person whom the assault was committed against is still in danger of being assaulted by your child, then your child will be held in a detention center until the court reaches a decision.
The days of fist-fighting in Toms River parks or play boxing on the Point Pleasant boardwalk are over. Today, children from Long Branch to Brick need to keep their hands to themselves at all times or risk the dangers of criminal charges. Since the charge of juvenile aggravated assault is a serious offense that carries the risk of incarceration in a detention center, if your child has been accused of this crime, it is essential to obtain a lawyer with experience. Contact Villani & DeLuca to serve the best interests of your child within the Ocean County or Monmouth County court system. Call today to speak with a lawyer.