Our firm represents individuals charged with the entire array of Sandy Hook offenses, such as possession of drugs; lewdness; driving while intoxicated; destruction of property; disorderly conduct; reckless driving; speeding, and leaving the scene of an accident.
Our clients work as university professors, public school teachers, social workers, IT professionals, lawyers, real estate brokers, nurses, and individuals employed in the financial industry. As such, we are very experienced in representing individuals who hold professional licenses and individuals who must submit to periodic background checks as a condition of their employment.
The results of a conviction for an offense committed on Sandy Hook can be significant. There is no expungement of a conviction of a federal offense. Although there has been several bills introduced in the US Congress to allow expungement of various low-level federal convictions, they have been unsuccessful. Our approach is to work toward the absolute best possible outcome of your case, so the impact of the charges on your life and career are either eliminated or reduced to the absolute minimum.
The Court Process: Requesting Copies of the Government’s Evidence – How is this done?
First, an attorney should file an entry of appearance in the case. This is a formal document filed in the court that advises that you are represented by counsel.
Second: A formal Request for copies of the evidence against you is made. This involves making a discovery request under Federal Rule of Criminal Procedure 16, which requires the government to turn over the following information:
(A) Defendant’s Oral Statement. Upon a defendant’s request, the government must disclose to the defendant the substance of any relevant oral statement made by the defendant, before or after arrest, in response to interrogation by a person the defendant knew was a government agent if the government intends to use the statement at trial.
(B) Defendant’s Written or Recorded Statement. Upon a defendant’s request, the government must disclose to the defendant, and make available for inspection, copying, or photographing, all of the following:
(i) any relevant written or recorded statement by the defendant if:
• the statement is within the government’s possession, custody, or control; and
• the attorney for the government knows–or through due diligence could know–that the statement exists;
(ii) the portion of any written record containing the substance of any relevant oral statement made before or after arrest if the defendant made the statement in response to
interrogation by a person the defendant knew was a government agent; and
(iii) the defendant’s recorded testimony before a grand jury relating to the charged offense.
(D) Defendant’s Prior Record. Upon a defendant’s request, the government must furnish the defendant with a copy of the defendant’s prior criminal record that is within the government’s possession, custody, or control if the attorney for the government knows–or through due diligence could know–that the record exists.
(E) Documents and Objects. Upon a defendant’s request, the government must permit the defendant to inspect and to copy or photograph books, papers, documents, data, photographs, tangible objects, buildings or places, or copies or portions of any of these items, if the item is within the government’s possession, custody, or control and:
(i) the item is material to preparing the defense;
(ii) the government intends to use the item in its case-in-chief at trial; or
(iii) the item was obtained from or belongs to the defendant.
(F) Reports of Examinations and Tests. Upon a defendant’s request, the government must permit a defendant to inspect and to copy or photograph the results or reports of any physical or mental examination and of any scientific test or experiment if:
(i) the item is within the government’s possession, custody, or control;
(ii) the attorney for the government knows–or through due diligence could know–that the item exists; and
(iii) the item is material to preparing the defense or the government intends to use the item in its case-in-chief at trial.
(G) Expert witnesses.–At the defendant’s request, the government must give to the defendant a written summary of any testimony that the government intends to offer through an expert witness.
What Kind of Information Will I Receive in Response to the Rule 16 Discovery Request?
You’ll receive all body cam recordings, which should have picked up anything within the scope of the camera lens, and all audio recordings of any statements or conversation between you and the US Park Rangers involved in the incident. You’ll also get copies of the any investigative reports and the arrest report. The investigative reports usually contain the Ranger’s narrative that describes their observations and any statements made by you.
If your case involves an alleged DUI or possession of drugs, you will get any test results of your breath sample and of the alleged substance (such as marijuana, cocaine, etc.).
There may be additional evidence produced by the Government in connection with your case, depending on the particular circumstances.
Does the evidence make out a provable case against you? This question is of course, critical, because it is the Government’s burden to prove the case against you. You do not have to prove your innocence. We also have to hear from you. What is your side of the story? What evidence can you offer to show that you did not commit the offense? Do you have witnesses? We need to factor your evidence into the entire picture so we can develop a viable defense to the charges.
The key questions are: Is there a lack of evidence that may constitute a complete defense to the charges? Or, is there evidence from “our side” of the case that may constitute a complete defense to the charges? And, if not a complete defense, are there circumstances that may be grounds to reduce the charge to a lesser charge, or can we persuade the court to allow you to enter a diversion program, which will ultimately result in the charges being dismissed against you? If you are permitted to enter in a diversion program, for marijuana, for example, if you are successful in the program, the charges will be dismissed, and your record will be sealed. This is not the same as an expungement.
When we appear in court with you, we will discuss the case with the Assistant United States Attorney for the purpose of either dismissal or reduction of the charges. Of course, you may elect to fight the government’s case in a trial.
We have successfully represented many, many individuals over the years in criminal and traffic charges from Sandy Hook. If you are charged with a traffic violation or with a crime while on Sandy Hook, Gunnison Beach, call us to discuss the unique aspects of your case, your background, and your future.
For individuals who are facing prosecution or sentencing in the federal District Courts of NJ, the NJ Municipal criminal or traffic courts, the Superior Courts of New Jersey, or who are appealing their criminal matters before the United States Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit, the New Jersey Superior Court, NJ Appellate Division, or the Supreme Court of New Jersey, it is critical to have an experienced Federal, State and Municipal Court New Jersey criminal and traffic defense attorney represent you. The experienced criminal defense lawyers of Schwartz & Posnock appear in all Federal, State, Municipal criminal, and traffic courts in New Jersey, and have convenient locations in Monmouth County (Eatontown), Essex County (Livingston), Union County (Linden), and Middlesex County (East Brunswick). Call us at 732-544-1460 or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org to schedule an appointment.