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STATE v. HENDRICKS — NEW JERSEY MURDER TRIAL — "NOT GUILTY" VERDICT

Mr. Tumelty represented Helena Hendricks, who was charged with first degree murder in Atlantic County Superior Court. The defendant faced a number of additional charges, including armed robbery, conspiracy and possession of a handgun for an unlawful purpose. At the conclusion of a jury trial that lasted three weeks, the defendant was found "not guilty" of all charges.

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New Jersey man acquitted in DWI case

In this country, every citizen is innocent until proven guilty. New Jersey residents facing criminal charges need to make sure their rights are protected.

A driver that allegedly crashed into a Pennsauken police car in October of 2007 had a dismissal of the charges against him upheld by the New Jersey Supreme Court. The man had been charged with driving while intoxicated after police say he left a tavern, swerved to avoid a blocked traffic lane and impacted a police cruiser.

A trial date was set for March of 2010 for the accused driver. The municipal court should have scheduled the trial within 60 days. The local judge refused to dismiss the case, and the defendant appealed to a superior court judge, who ruled that the case should be thrown out due to the delay in trial scheduling. The prosecutor’s office appealed the decision to the state supreme court, which entered a unanimous decision in favor of the defendant, finding that the delay was excessive and unreasonable.

Drunk driving charges can be a threat not only to one’s liberty and driver’s license, but to one’s ability to earn a living as well. It is important that all avenues of defense are explored when faced with such charges, especially in cases involving an accident and injury. The U.S. Constitution and state laws require the government to meet minimum standards of due process, so as not to prejudice the rights of criminal defendants. These are not “technicalities,” but are the right of every citizen.

It is essential to ensure that the government follows the rules when charging and bringing a person to trial. New Jersey residents facing such a criminal charges, such as a DWI should do everything possible to raise a competent defense.

Source: The Daily Record, “NJ clears man of DUI because trial not speedy,” Jim Walsh, April 2, 2013

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