One of the largest advantages to reducing and avoiding a DUI or DWI conviction is the errors made by a police officer during the investigation. Some of the DUI cases I have handled throughout New Jersey had charges dismissed or reduced due to a cop’s mistakes in the arrest. I work with my clients who have been charged with a DUI or DWI in the Camden County NJ area to determine the best evidence that will defend their case. There are various mistakes that cops can make when charging a citizen with a DUI or DWI. Being aware of the faults of law enforcement officers can help determine an effective strategy for your DUI case.
An Unjustified Traffic Stop
If the police officer didn’t have a valid reason for pulling the driver over, it is considered an illegal stop. If this mistake occurs, all of the violations that were recorded could be suppressed by a written motion filed by my law service.
Sobriety Checkpoint Errors
Occasionally some officers do not adhere to the strict rules and regulations of the DUI checkpoint. This mistake alone can be challenged in the court of law.
Sobriety Test Misconduct
When a driver is asked to perform a sobriety test, sometimes the cop on duty may not consider the weather conditions, medical issues of the individual, fatigue, or pavement structure.
Breath Test Administration Faultiness
In some cases, the breath test is not administered correctly or police paperwork is filed wrong. The breathalyzer may be susceptible to producing skewed results. If this incident occurs, I can argue in your case that the DUI check was not conducted correctly.
If you have been charged with a DUI or DWI in the Gloucester County NJ area, consult with me today to determine your case.
So you’ve made a mistake with the law in the past and now you are ready to put it behind you. However, your criminal record is getting in the way of your new beginning. You want to get a job but the criminal record keeps popping up, causing employers to turn you away. You are trying to buy a home but the record makes it impossible. Fortunately, there is a legal solution called an expungement that can seal your record and make it clean again. As an expungement attorney that serves the Camden County area, Charles Block can assist you with handling the process of clearing your record.
Charles Block has won numerous expungement cases for clients. When Clients hire Charles Block, they can expect to be represented by an experienced professional attorney who will fight for them to gain the clean record they need. There are a number of steps in the expungement process that must be taken to achieve a clean record, of which an attorney can assist you.
- Find out if you are eligible. Certain criminal records cannot be cleared, even through an expungement. In addition, if you have more than one criminal record they may not be subject to expungement.
- Gather and locate your record. You will need the information from your record to file an expungement. The documents will contain key information needed such as date of arrest, offenses, and date of conviction.
- Fill out and complete all the forms. These forms are used to file the petition to seal your record.
- File and serve the forms you completed to the court.
- Attend your hearing.
- Present the expungement order signed by the judge to all parties, including the chief of police, the warden, and the country prosecutor.
If you are looking to clear your record and are in search of an expungement attorney in the Gloucester area, contact Charles Block! Check out his website for more information.
So, you’ve come to the conclusion that you want to sell your home via a short sale. What comes next? If you’ve decided that a short sale is right for you, the most important aspect of the process is to close the transaction. While our real estate attorneys at Charles Block can assist you with your short sale, it is good to know what you should expect throughout the procedure. Of course, the main objective is to avoid foreclosure and put an end to paying for an expensive mortgage.
A short sale will allow you to put your property on the market. When the transaction is complete, the lender will have agreed to release the loan on your home. Keep in mind that short sales don’t always cancel the debt of a mortgage. Sometimes they request the deficiency to be paid or for the loan to continue in repayments. This where our attorneys come in to help – to conduct negotiations and represent you and your needs.
Selling the Short Sale
Even with a short sale transaction, you will still need plenty of time to sell your property. A short sale can take months to close. Once your property is sold, you will have to move immediately, so be prepared. In addition, approval from all parties involved in your property is needed in order to close. We also suggest educating yourself on short sale frauds so that you can be aware of it and protect yourself from being a victim.
For more information on short sales real estate cases, please feel free to explore our website!
The 2014 holiday season is here. Over the next month, people will be out shopping more than usual, decorating their homes as well as attending various holiday parties. While the holidays are usually a time of happiness, there are many people that take advantage of the situation and the law during this time of year. Therefore, what follows is a list of some of the top crimes committed during the holiday season.
Getting Your Identity Stolen
Even though this can happen at any time of the year, the risk for this happening around the holidays is heightened with more and more people using their credit cards in store and online. In fact, back in 2013, millions of people who shopped at Target had their credit and debit card numbers stolen. Not only was this a massive headache for Target, but the millions of people who shopped there were on high alert because of the fact that their identities might have been stolen, or they would have received miscellaneous charges to their card. In the end, those who had shopped at Target during the security breach had their cards replaced and most monitored their accounts daily to ensure that they were not receiving any bogus charges. Therefore, what are ways to prevent your identity being stolen? Monitor your statements, and also pay attention to the news. Even though banks are monitoring their clients’ accounts, they don’t catch everything so the key is to pay attention.
Stealing & Shoplifting
Not everyone has enough money to purchase the types of gifts they want. So, what is one avenue they pursue? Shoplifting. Unfortunately, stealing merchandise is a lot easier to do during the holidays because of all the crowds as well as employees being more distracted than usual. Although most employees are “trained” to single out a shoplifter, most cannot keep up and the company is forced to accept the loss.
DUI’s & DWI’s
While the holiday season is a time of celebrating, most people take it too far. Unfortunately, drunk driving during this time of year is high. Also, since the mid-2000s, the amount of accidents related to drug or alcohol has increased ever year.
It is a sad fact that there is such a high amount of crime committed during the holidays. Those who need an attorney that is able to handle criminal law, DUI/DWI cases and more, feel free to contact Charles Block for a consultation regarding your case.
If you’ve been arrested for a DUI, you may not remember the events that lead to your arrest. But chances are you are very clear about the events that followed. The worst time to learn about the significance of a DUI is when it’s happening. While experience is a great teacher, it may be helpful to know more about the legal process ahead of time.
Here’s what to expect in the state of New Jersey.
The arraignment is the primal step of the criminal procedure. It takes place in a courtroom. The purpose of the arraignment is to inform you of the charges you face. This is the time to enter a plea with the judge – usually “guilty” or “not guilty.” There are other pleas, and it gets complicated, which is why at this point you are assigned a lawyer if you can’t afford one.
The Pre-trial Conference: continuance, plea bargain, suppression hearing, trial
Before the pre-trial conference, your lawyer should have received all evidence against you from the prosecutor’s office. Sometimes there’s a delay in receiving the documentation. When there’s a delay, your lawyer will ask for a “continuance.” A continuance is granted if more time is needed to gather evidence.
If all the evidence has been received and reviewed by the date of the pre-trial conference, your lawyer and the prosecutor will discuss the merits of the case. Each nitpicks flaws in each other’s facts regarding the case and they will argue about what should happen. Sometimes there’ll be a reduction in the charges. Sometimes there’ll be a dismissal. Sometimes there’ll be a compromise. When compromise isn’t possible, the case moves forward.
A suppression hearing occurs if your lawyer believes your constitutional rights were violated. This is the stage where your lawyer can move to quash evidence against you. Many cases will be resolved at this point.
If your lawyer and the prosecutor have not agreed to a plea bargain, and your case wasn’t dismissed at a suppression hearing, a trial date will be set. At the trail – which takes place in Municipal Court – a judge will examine evidence and hear testimony. The judge will decided your innocence or guilt as there are no trial juries in the state of New Jersey.
If found guilty at the trial, you will receive a punishment, also known as a sentence. Receiving a sentence doesn’t always mean jail time. In some cases, you might receive a fine or community service. The possible sentences are fixed within the law of the offense.
Are you facing a DUI?
If you need a DUI lawyer in New Jersey, contact Charles Block.
After everyone has had a few days to process the recent Ray Rice controversy, many New Jersey residents (along with sport fans around the world) are asking the same question: Should New Jersey lawmakers change who is eligible for the pre-trial intervention program in order to avoid probation or jail time?
Rice, a former NFL star (now that he has been suspended indefinitely and released by the Baltimore Ravens), was charged with aggravated assault in February for attacking his then-fiancé (now wife) at Revel, an Atlantic City Casino. If convicted, he faced a possible sentence of 3 to 5 years in prison.
A request by Rice’s attorney for pre-trial intervention was granted by the Atlantic County Prosecutor’s Office. A pre-trial intervention program allows first-time offenders of 3rd or 4th degree crimes to avoid prosecution. If Rice meets the conditions of the program, his record will be cleared of the charge.
This past Monday, TMZ posted video of the violent attack in which Rice punched his wife and dragged her unconscious body out of an elevator. Since the video was made to be seen publicly, state Senate President Stephen Sweeney called to review the process in which the Atlantic County Prosecutor’s Office decided on whether or not the New Jersey PTI program needs to be changed.
Upon seeing the violent video, State Assemblyman Joseph Cryan plans to introduce a bill next Monday that would prohibit any individual who is charged with aggravated assault in a domestic violence case from entering the pre-trial intervention program.
Do you think it is time to change the law? If you have any questions concerning the current program for pretrial intervention in New Jersey, please contact Attorney Charles Block today.
In the state of New Jersey, there are two scenarios that can leave you without the expungement you were hoping for, to wipe away a crime from your record:
- Objection to Your Petition
Why Would You Be Ineligible for an Expungement?
- Prior Convictions- Numerous requirements must be met in order for an expungement petition to be eligible. An individual must not have other prior convictions. New Jersey courts take into account all previous crimes when considering eligibility of expungement petition
- Pending Cases- Pending criminal charges are also considered by New Jersey courts. In most cases, if there are pending charges, the courts will find you ineligible
- The Waiting Game- You must complete a waiting period which begins at either:
- The enforcement date of sentence
- Date all fines are paid
- Date jail, parole or probation is completed (whichever date comes last)
Waiting times vary depending on severity of conviction
General waiting periods:
Felony Crime – 10 years
Misdemeanor – 5 years
Juvenile Adjudication – 5 years
Municipal Ordinance – 2 years
Young Drug Offender – one year
Diversion Program – six months
Dismissal – No waiting period
If you find that you are ineligible due to any of the waiting time requirements, you can have an expungement lawyer of NJ prepare your paperwork and help you apply later once you become eligible. This ensures that your record is cleared as soon as possible.
Do You Meet All of the Requirements, But are Still Denied?
After meeting all of the requirements, your petition for expungement could still be denied by a prosecutor if:
Expungement is not in the public’s best interest
The crime is considered too dangerous to be expunged
You do not prove to be rehabilitated after crime
If you are in need of assistance in getting a criminal charge wide clean from your record, contact my office today.
As a traffic law attorney of New Jersey, one thing I’ve come to understand to be true is that car accidents can happen to anyone at any given time. If you’ve been driving for a while, chances are, you’ve either been involved in an automobile accident or have witnessed one occur first-hand. In many cases, drivers do not even realize they have been involved in an accident and drive off without realizing they have caused an accident. However, if you leave the scene of an accident, you could face serious charges in the state of New Jersey.
There are absolutely penalties for leaving the scene of an accident. If you leave the scene of an accident you could face either traffic ticket charges or in worst case scenarios, criminal charges. Penalties can depend on:
- Whether or not there was damage to the vehicle
- Whether or not someone was injured as a result of the accident
- Whether or not someone was killed as a result of the accident
First Offense Penalties Include:
- Fine from $200 to $400
- Spend up to 30 days in jail
- Six-month license suspension
- 2 motor vehicle points added to license
Second Offense Penalties Include:
- Fine from $400 to $600
- From 30 to 90 days spent in jail
- 1 year licenses suspension
- 2 motor vehicle points added to license
Injury or Death:
- From $2,500 to $5,000 fine
- 180 days spent in county jail
- 1 year license suspension for a first offense
- Permanent license forfeiture for a 2nd offense
- 8 motor vehicle points added to license
As an experienced traffic defense lawyer, I, Charles Block can craft an effective defense to ensure you avoid severe penalties if you leave the scene of the accident. But, to avoid this scenario altogether, always pull over to the side of the road if involved in an accident and wait for assistance.
As a criminal attorney of Haddonfield, I get asked this question a lot. Some of the most expensive things people target are cars, digital devices like cell phones and cash. But, no personal possession is safe! In fact, according to the National Retail Federation (NRF), one of the most commonly stolen items is Nutella. This is because it is relatively expensive and high in demand, two of the largest factors in why items are stolen.
But there are many weirder things that people shoplift. According to NRF, here are the 10 weirdest things shoplifted:
Tide, which is an easily recognizable brand of laundry detergent is traded for drugs and other illicit items. This item is difficult to track because of the lack of serial numbers on the packaging.
According to a 2013 crime survey conducted by the NRF, allergy medicine has become a popular item to steal. Allergy medication is typically stolen for recreational use, or re-sold on the streets.
Young shoplifters choose to steal pregnancy tests to avoid embarrassment of purchasing them in public. But more importantly, they are targeted by groups of thieves for their resale value. They can be sold on the black market for near-retail prices.
These are stolen for their value at scrap yards. The price of such metals as platinum, rhodium and palladium found in a catalytic converter has risen in recent years, which can explain why they are one of the most shoplifted items.
At first, you may not consider this item to be a hot commodity, but with the increase in metal prices, manhole covers are stolen frequently. Thieves will go as far as dressing as construction workers when stealing the covers.
Certainly the tastiest item on the list, Nutella is reported as being stolen in areas throughout the world.
It is a labor-intensive process to produce maple syrup. 40 gallons of sap is required to produce a single gallon of syrup, which is why thieves go to great lengths to steal million dollars’ worth of sap.
Make sure you keep an eye on those porch plants you have in front of your house. In the past year, there have been a number of shrubbery theft cases, with thieves leaving damage to lawns. Plant value can reach extreme highs when traded on the black market.
IT is common for thieves to break into the backyards of homes located on the Ocean in order to steal their boats. Along with small boats, jet skis are also a commonly stolen item.
Due to the increase in demand for beef overseas, the value for steak has risen greatly. In 2013, it was reported that more than 10,000 cows and horses were stolen. It is clear that steak is no exception for shoplifters.
To learn more about shoplifting, contact the Law Office of Charles Block today.
As a criminal law attorney, many of the questions I receive are about restraining orders. In fact, one of the most important questions I get asked is, “When can I file for a restraining order?” In order for resident of New Jersey for a restraining order, he or she must have been a victim who was subjected to domestic violence.
What does the term, “victim,” mean?
A victim is anyone who is over the age of 18 who has been subjected to an act of violence caused by a spouse, present household member, or former household member. The term victim also includes anyone, or any age, who has been abused physically by a spouse who he/she is having a child with, or a person who he/she is in a dating relationship with.
Individuals are able to obtain a restraining order against a juvenile if they have a child with the juvenile, and have been subjected to domestic abuse. The steps involved with filing for a restraining order include:
- · Fill out a domestic violence complaint, which is a civil complaint
- · Appear before judge who upon reviewing the complaint, will ask questions
- · A temporary restraining order will be filed if the judge is satisfied with your answers
- · A final restraining order hearing will also be set by the judge
There is a difference between a temporary restraining order and a final restraining order is that the temporary restraining order is issued to the individual based on their input given during the initial hearing. This protects the victim from the defendant until the final restraining order is given.
For more information on criminal law, please contact Charles Block, Attorney at Law, by calling 856-741-1495.