Understanding NJ Criminal Law

Most people only start researching and reading about the law when they have been accused of a crime or felony. However, this should not be case. You should know the criminal law procedures of the state you live in. This will prevent you from doing things that may be construed as crimes. You will also be better prepared and will know what to do if you ever accused of a crime. The following is some information on NJ criminal law especially with regards to arrests, booking and bail.

The first thing you need to know is what the law says about arrest. According to criminal law, you can be arrested by a police officer if he/she has reason to believe that an offense is about to take place or it has already taken place. Once you are arrested, you will be taken into custody. However, it is important to note that certain conditions must be in place for the police officer to arrest you. For starters, there must be probable cause. The officer must also have observed a crime taking place. Lastly, the officer must have a warrant for your arrest.

As you may have seen on television, it is up to the state to prove your guilt. Accordingly, after the arrest, the police officer will inform you about what is known as the Miranda rights. These include your right to a lawyer and the right to remain silent. It is worth noting that if you are arrested by an officer who does not tell you about your Miranda rights, anything you say cannot be used as evidence against you in court.

After arrest, you will be booked in jailed and your personal details collected. Different states have different booking procedures. However, among the things you can expect include photographing and fingerprinting. Your personal belongings will also be confiscated. In the state of New Jersey, you will also get a medical screening.

Two things happen when a complaint has been issued. Either the defendant is issued with a summon to appear in court or he is arrested. This is what is referred to as first appearance. It is important to note that in New Jersey the first appearance is combined with the arraignment. In most instances, the hearing for the first appearance/arraignment will take place on the same day as the arrest. However, if you are arrested on a holiday or over the weekend, you may have to wait longer for the hearing. Since all accused persons have the right to bails, your bail will be set no more than 12 hours after the issuance of the complaint.

Understanding what the NJ criminal law says about arrests and booking will help you be better prepared if you are ever accused of a crime.
It is good to be informed about NJ criminal law. This way, if you are ever arrested for a crime, you will know not only what to expect but what to do.


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