1. Wills, Estate Planning & Probate SeminarSponsored by M.A.S.H Mutual Aid Self Help for single adults. May 8 at 7:30pm
Free community program
JFK Conference Center Social Hall
70 James Street
Edison, New Jersey 08820
WILLS & ESTATE ADMINISTRATION-
PROTECT YOUR FAMILY AND MAKE PLANNING EASY
1. Municipal Court can stay DL Suspension after DWI if Appeal. State v. Robertson __ NJ __ (2017)
The Crowe factors are not a good fit to assess license suspensions in driving while intoxicated (DWI) cases. Defendants who seek a new trial before the Law Division should be presumptively eligible for a stay of a driver's license suspension. The State can overcome that presumption by showing that a stay would present a serious threat to the safety of any person or the community. If no conditions would mitigate that risk, the court should not stay the sentence. If a defendant is convicted of DWI by the Law Division, the defendant has the burden to justify a stay of a driver's license pending appeal to the Appellate Division by demonstrating the three elements set forth in Rule 2:9-4. If a stay is granted, the court may impose appropriate conditions similar to those available after a defendant's conviction in municipal court. Municipal court and trial judges should set forth reasons on the record when they rule on a stay motion. (A-58-14)
3. DNA on Towel Not Admissible without Proper Foundation and Chain of Custody. State v Mauti 208 NJ 519 (2017)
A jury found defendant guilty of third degree aggravated criminal sexual contact and fourth degree criminal sexual contact and not guilty of first degree aggravated sexual assault and second degree sexual assault. Defendant is a physician. The complaining witness is his sister-in-law. The court reverse and remand for a new trial.
The court hold the trial judge should have excluded a towel containing defendant's semen based on the absence of competent evidence linking it to the alleged sexual assault. The towel also constituted inadmissible hearsay by conduct under N.J.R.E. 801(a)(2).
The judge also abused his discretion by permitting the State to call five fresh-complaint witnesses and thereafter deciding not to instruct the jury on fresh-complaint testimony. Defense counsel's acquiescence to the trial judge's decision not to charge the jury on fresh-complaint did not constitute invited error.
Finally, The court conclude that the trial court properly admitted a redacted version of a letter sent by defense counsel to the prosecutor as an adopted admission under N.J.R.E. 803(b)(3). Under these circumstances, The court reject defendant's argument that defense counsel's letter falls within the ambit of "plea negotiations," as that term is used in N.J.R.E. 410. Our analysis is guided by the federal courts' review of Fed. R. Evid. 410, the source rule of N.J.R.E. 410.
As a matter of first impression in this State, The court adopt the analytical approach used by the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals in United States v. Robertson, 582 F.2d 1356, 1366 (5th Cir. 1978) to determine when interactions between the State's representative and defense counsel constitute protected "plea negotiations" under N.J.R.E. 410. This approach requires a trial judge to determine: (1) whether the accused exhibited an actual subjective expectation to negotiate a plea at the time of the discussion; and (2) whether the accused's expectation was reasonable given the totality of the objective circumstances. The State bears the burden of proof. Because this two-tiered approach requires a fact-sensitive analysis, the trial judge should conduct an N.J.R.E. 104 hearing to resolve any disputed facts. A-3551-12T3