Domestic violence cases pose a unique challenge for prosecutors because domestic violence incidents are at once difficult to prosecute, yet extremely common, occurring, on average, about once every eight seconds throughout New Jersey, according to the statistics compiled by the New Jersey Attorney General’s Office. Domestic violence is difficult to prosecute because incidents usually [...]
It may come as a surprise to most, including many criminal defense attorneys, that the federal system detains a greater percentage of people arrested than state systems. Since the Bail Reform Act (BRA), enacted in 1984, pretrial detention has significantly increased from 19% in 1985 to 75% in 2019, which is particularly astounding, considering violent crime accounts for only 2% of federal arrests.
With our societal addiction to the internet, smartphones, and computers, today’s teens face growing exposure to new forms of harassment and bullying. These can sometimes lead to criminal charges for those engaging in this conduct, and potentially anxiety, depression and, suicidal thoughts for the recipients.
In 2016, the New Jersey Supreme Court issued two opinions of particular importance for attorneys who regularly handle criminal domestic violence cases in New Jersey. In State v. Bryant, decided on November 10, 2016, the Court suppressed evidence found during a protective sweep search of a home after a 911 call reporting a crime of domestic violence. The opinion is extremely important for any defendant who has been charged with a crime based upon evidence uncovered during a police response to a domestic violence call.
In the wake of the Josh Brown domestic violence incident, the National Football League has, in the public’s eyes, badly mishandled the imposition of discipline over a player accused of domestic violence for the third time in three years. While the headlines have portrayed the NFL as soft on domestic violence following the Ray Rice, Greg Hardy, and, now, Josh Brown cases, it appears to me, as someone who has supervised domestic violence prosecutions for the State of New Jersey, that the NFL’s problem is not that it is soft on domestic violence. I think the league wants to be able to investigate and punish domestic violence appropriately, but it is finding that it is not an easy task. The NFL is simply making mistakes that are fairly typical of a rookie prosecutor that is unfamiliar with domestic violence prosecutions.