GRAVE TAMPERING 2C:17-3b(6) model jury charge in NJ
CRIMINAL MISCHIEF GRAVE TAMPERING
N.J.S.A. 2C:17-3b(6)model jury charge
Countof the indictment charges defendant with committing the offense of criminal mischief by(insert allegation of indictment).In pertinent part, the indictment alleges that
(Read material part of Countto jury)
Defendant is charged with violating a provision of our law that provides that a person is guilty of criminal mischief ifhe/shetampers with a grave, crypt, mausoleum or other site where human remains are stored or interred, with the purpose to desecrate, destroy or steal such human remains or any part thereof.
In order to convict defendant of this offense, you must find that the State has proved beyond a reasonable doubt each of the following three elements:
1.That(location)is a grave/crypt/mausoleum/or other site where human remains are stored or interred;
2.That defendant tampered with that(grave/crypt/mausoleum/burial sight); and
3.That defendant acted with the purpose to desecrate, destroy or steal human remains or any part thereof.
The first element that the State must prove beyond a reasonable doubt is that(location)is a grave/crypt/mausoleum/or other site where human remains are stored or interred.
The second element that the State must prove beyond a reasonable doubt is that defendant tampered with that(grave/crypt/mausoleum/burial site).Regarding this element, to tamper with means to interfere with another persons property regardless of whether the property interfered with is actually damaged.
The third element that the State must prove beyond a reasonable doubt is that defendant acted with the purpose to desecrate, destroy or steal human remains or any part thereof.To desecrate means to deface, damage or pollute.To steal means to take unlawfully the property of another person with the intent to permanently deprive that person of the property.
A defendant acts purposely with respect to the nature ofhis/herconduct or a result thereof if it ishis/herconscious object to engage in conduct of that nature or to cause such a result.A defendant acts purposely with respect to attendant circumstances ifhe/sheis aware of the existence of such circumstances or believes or hopes that they exist.In other words, for you to find that defendant acted purposely, you must be satisfied beyond a reasonable doubt that it was defendants purpose or conscious object to tamper with a grave/crypt/mausoleum/burial site in order to desecrate, destroy or steal human remains or any part thereof.
You should understand that purpose is a condition of the mind.It cannot be seen.It can only be determined by inferences from conduct, words or acts.Therefore, it is not necessary for the State to produce witnesses to testify that defendant stated, for example, thathe/sheacted purposely whenhe/shedid a particular thing.It is within your power to find that proof of purpose has been furnished beyond a reasonable doubt by inference which may arise from the nature of the acts and the surrounding circumstances.The place where the acts occurred and all that was done or said by defendant preceding, connected with, and immediately succeeding the events in question are among the circumstances to be considered.
If you find that the State has failed to prove beyond a reasonable doubt any element of the offense, you must find defendant not guilty.But if you determine that the State has proved beyond a reasonable doubt every element of criminal mischief that have been explained to you, you must find defendant guilty of that offense.
SeeCommentary to New Jersey Penal Code, Vol. II, p. 208.
Criminal mischief pursuant toSeeN.J.S.A. 2C:17-3b(6) is a third degree offense irrespective of any pecuniary loss suffered.The related offenses of theft of human remains contrary toSeeN.J.S.A. 2C:20-2e and unlawful desecration, damage or destruction of human remains contrary toN.J.S.A. 2C:22-1a(2) are second degree offenses.
| Consequences of a Criminal Guilty Plea|
1. You will have to appear in open court and tell the judge what you did that makes you guilty of the particular offense(s)
2. Do you understand that if you plead guilty:
a. You will have a criminal record3. If you are on Probation, you will have to submit to random drug and urine testing. If you violate Probation, you often go to jail.
4. In indictable matters, you will be required to provide a DNA sample, which could be used by law enforcement for the investigation of criminal activity, and pay for the cost of testing.
5. You must pay restitution if the court finds there is a victim who has suffered a loss and if the court finds that you are able or will be able in the future to pay restitution.
6. If you are a public office holder or employee, you can be required to forfeit your office or job by virtue of your plea of guilty.
7. If you are not a United States citizen or national, you may be deported by virtue of your plea of guilty.
8. You must wait 5-10 years to expunge a first offense. 2C:52-3
9. You could be put on Probation.
10. In Drug Cases, a mandatory DEDR penalty of $500-$1,000, and lose your drivers license for 6 months - 2 years. You must pay a Law Enforcement Officers Training and Equipment Fund penalty of $30.
11. You may be required to do Community Service.
12. You must pay a minimum Violent Crimes Compensation Board assessment of $50 ($100 minimum if you are convicted of a crime of violence) for each count to which you plead guilty.
13. You must pay a $75 Safe Neighborhood Services Fund assessment for each conviction.
14. If you are being sentenced to probation, you must pay a fee of up to $25 per month for the term of probation.
15. You lose the presumption against incarceration in future cases. 2C:44-1
16. You may lose your right to vote.
The defense of a person charged with a criminal offense is not impossible. There are a number of viable defenses and arguments which can be pursued to achieve a successful result. Advocacy, commitment, and persistence are essential to defending a client accused of a criminal offense.
Jail for Crimes and Disorderly Conduct:
If someone pleads Guilty or is found Guilty of a criminal offense, the following is the statutory Prison/Jail terms.
NJSA 2C: 43-8 (1) In the case of a crime of the first degree, for a specific term of years which shall be fixed by the court and shall be between 10 years and 20 years;
(2) In the case of a crime of the second degree, for a specific term of years which shall be fixed by the court and shall be between five years and 10 years;
(3) In the case of a crime of the third degree, for a specific term of years which shall be fixed by the court and shall be between three years and five years;
(4) In the case of a crime of the fourth degree, for a specific term which shall be fixed by the court and shall not exceed 18 months.
2C:43-3 Fines have been increased recently! 2C:43-3. Fines and Restitutions. A person who has been convicted of an offense may be sentenced to pay a fine, to make restitution, or both, such fine not to exceed:
a. (1) $200,000.00 when the conviction is of a crime of the first degree;
(2) $150,000.00 when the conviction is of a crime of the second degree;
b. (1) $15,000.00 when the conviction is of a crime of the third degree;
(2) $10,000.00 when the conviction is of a crime of the fourth degree;
c. $1,000.00, when the conviction is of a disorderly persons offense;
d. $500.00, when the conviction is of a petty disorderly persons offense;
If facing any criminal charge, retain an experienced attorney immediately to determine you rights and obligations to the court. Current criminal charge researched by Kenneth Vercammen, Esq. 732-572-0500