Paramus NJ Assault by Auto Lawyers
The offense of Assault by Auto can be graded as either a second (2nd), third (3rd), fourth (4th) degree indictable (felony) or even a disorderly person offense (misdemeanor). The underlying facts of the case will dictate which degree the defendant is charged with. As you will see below, there is a wide range for the potential incarceration period one may be facing if convicted of assault by auto in New Jersey. The governing statute in New Jersey for Assault by Auto is N.J.S.A. 2C:12-1(c). If the victim of the alleged assault by auto later passes away the defendant may also find themselves facing a death by auto or aggravated manslaughter charge. Our law firm, the Law Offices of Jonathan F. Marshall, has the experience and knowledge to defend these charges since we have:
- Over two-hundred (200) years of combined experience
- A team of ten (10) criminal defense attorneys that devote their entire practice to criminal law
- Our firm has seven (7) former prosecutors
- Three (3) of our attorneys were former assistant county prosecutors and held directorial positions of the Drug, Gang, and Gun Task Force, Major Crimes Division, Trial Division, Juvenile Division
- Three (3) of our attorneys were former municipal prosecutors in over twenty-five (25) towns
- One (1) of our attorneys is Certified by the Supreme Court of New Jersey as a Criminal Trial Attorney, a distinction held by less than 1% of attorneys in this State
- One (1) of our lawyers was recently selected to Super Lawyers Rising Stars 2020 list for New Jersey which is a highly credentialed, peer-influenced, third-party validated, and a patented process that selects only 2.5% of the attorneys in New Jersey to this list
- Selected to the National Trial Lawyers Top 100 and Top 40 Under 40
If you have been charged with assault by auto, aggravated assault, driving while intoxicated, driving under the influence or eluding in Bergen County, we can help. We have been successfully defending individuals charged with assault by auto in towns throughout Bergen County including Montvale, Rutherford, Fort Lee, Elmwood Park, Englewood Cliffs, Garfield, Palisades Interstate Park, River Vale and Fairview. If you would like to come into our Hackensack, Paramus, or Fort Lee Office to have a face to face consultation with any one of our attorneys on staff please contact us at 201.429.9783. We are available around the clock to help assist in any way we possibly can.
Fort Lee NJ Assault by Auto Defense Attorneys: N.J.S.A. 2C:12-1(c)
As stated above, an assault by auto (N.J.S.A. 2C: 12-1(c)) is a serious charge. In order for a Bergen County Prosecutor or a municipal prosecutor in Bergen County to convict, they will need to prove the following depending what you or your loved one is charged with:
(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. Proof that the defendant was operating a hand-held wireless telephone while driving a motor vehicle may give rise to an inference that the defendant was driving recklessly.
(2) Assault by auto or vessel is a crime of the third degree if the person drives the vehicle while in violation of R.S.39:4-50 (DWI) or (C.39:4-50.4a) and serious bodily injury results and is a crime of the fourth degree if the person drives the vehicle while in violation of R.S.39:4-50 (DWI) or (C.39:4-50.4a) and bodily injury results.
(3) Assault by auto or vessel is a crime of the second degree if serious bodily injury results from the defendant operating the auto or vessel while in violation of R.S.39:4-50 (DWI) or (C.39:4-50.4a) while:
(a) on any school property used for school purposes which is owned by or leased to any elementary or secondary school or school board, or within 1,000 feet of such school property;
(b) driving through a school crossing as defined in R.S.39:1-1 if the municipality, by ordinance or resolution, has designated the school crossing as such; or
(c) driving through a school crossing as defined in R.S.39:1-1 knowing that juveniles are present if the municipality has not designated the school crossing as such by ordinance or resolution.
Grading of Assault by Auto:
Types of Injuries:
- Bodily Injury is defined as causing some form of physical pain, illness, or any impairment of one’s physical condition.
- Serious bodily injury is defined as creating “a substantial risk of death or which causes serious, permanent disfigurement, or protracted loss or impairment of the function of any bodily member or organ”.
- Significant bodily injury is defined as creating “bodily injury which creates a temporary loss of the function of any bodily member or organ or temporary loss of any one of the five senses”.
- A Second (2nd) Degree Offense is punishable by up to ten (10) years in a New Jersey State Prison and up to a $150,000 fine. This offense is not subject to the No Early Release Act “NERA” however the judge and prosecutor may impose a mandatory term of parole in-eligibility. In addition, the defendant is also facing a presumption of incarceration, which means if convicted, the defendant will almost certainly be sent to a New Jersey State Prison.
- A Third (3rd) Degree Offense is punishable by up to five (5) years in a New Jersey State Prison and up to a $15,000 fine. A first time offender who is convicted of a third degree offense is given the presumption against incarceration, however, with that being said, the presumption may be overcome.
- A Fourth (4th) Degree Offense is punishable by up to eighteen (18) months in a New Jersey State Prison and up to a $10,000 fine. Just as it is with the third degree offenses, the defendant is given the presumption against incarceration but this too can be overcome.
- A Disorderly Persons (DP) Offense is punishable by up to six (6) months in the Bergen County Jail and up to a $1,000 fine.
Depending on the defendants prior criminal history and the underlying facts of the case the defendant may be eligible for one of New Jersey’s diversionary programs known as Pre Trial Intervention (“PTI”). If the defendant is eligible and defense counsel is able to persuade both the judge and prosecutor that the defendant should be entitled the benefit of PTI, then the defendant has the opportunity to walk away from the pending felony charges without a criminal record. To determine one’s eligibility please see our pre-trial intervention page.
Hackensack NJ Assault By Auto Lawyers
The Law Offices of Jonathan F. Marshall has the experience and knowledge required to successfully protect your interests. As you can tell from above, these are very serious charges, one’s that if not handled properly can have severe consequences on your life. If you have any further questions with regards to the offense of Assault by Auto, Aggravated Assault, Death by Auto, Simple Assault or any other assault or theft offense for that matter please contact any one of our Bergen County Offices for a free initial consultation. You can contact us directly at 201.429.9783.