Probation and Suspended Sentence in Superior Court Matters
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The following are the major Court Rules and statutes dealing with Probation and Suspended Sentences in Superior Court matters
Rule 3:21-7 states: After conviction, unless otherwise provided by law, the court may suspend the imposition of a sentence or the defendant may be placed on probation. (a) Conditions. The order shall require the defendant to comply with standard conditions adopted by the court and filed by counsel with the criminal division manager as designee of the deputy clerk of the Superior Court (except as otherwise ordered), as well as such special conditions, including a term of imprisonment pursuant to N.J.S.A. 2C:45-1c, as the court imposes. As a condition of probation the court may impose a term of community-related service to be performed by the defendant under such terms and conditions as the court may determine. A copy of the order, together with the standard and special conditions, shall be furnished to the defendant, and read and explained to the defendant by the probation officer, whereupon the defendant and the probation officer shall sign a joint statement, to be filed with the criminal division manager as designee of the deputy clerk of the Superior Court, as to the officer's compliance with such reading and explanation requirement. If the defendant refuses to sign such statement, the defendant shall be resentenced. (b) Detention. The court may, pursuant to N.J.S.A. 2C:45-3a(3), upon a showing of probable cause that the defendant has committed another offense, detain without bail pending determination of the charge, a defendant who was sentenced to probation or whose sentence was suspended. (c) Revocation. At any time before termination of the period of suspension or probation, the court may revoke a suspension or probation pursuant to N.J.S.A. 2C:45-3.
NJSA 2C:45-1. sets forth the Conditions of Suspension or Probation.
a. When the court suspends the imposition of sentence on a person who has been convicted of an offense or sentences him to be placed on probation, it shall attach such reasonable conditions, authorized by this section, as it deems necessary to insure that he will lead a law-abiding life or is likely to assist him to do so. These conditions may be set forth in a set of standardized conditions promulgated by the county probation department and approved by the court.
b. The court, as a condition of its order, may require the defendant:
(1) To support his dependents and meet his family responsibilities;
(2) To find and continue in gainful employment;
(3) To undergo available medical or psychiatric treatment and to enter and remain in a specified institution, when required for that purpose;
(4) To pursue a prescribed secular course of study or vocational training;
(5) To attend or reside in a facility established for the instruction, recreation or residence of persons on probation;
(6) To refrain from frequenting unlawful or disreputable places or consorting with disreputable persons;
(7) Not to have in his possession any firearm or other dangerous weapon unless granted written permission;
(8) (Deleted by amendment, P.L. 1991, c.329);
(9) To remain within the jurisdiction of the court and to notify the court or the probation officer of any change in his address or his employment;
(10) To report as directed to the court or the probation officer, to permit the officer to visit his home, and to answer all reasonable inquiries by the probation officer;
(11) To pay a fine;
(12) To satisfy any other conditions reasonably related to the rehabilitation of the defendant and not unduly restrictive of his liberty or incompatible with his freedom of conscience;
(13) To require the performance of community-related service.
c. The court, as a condition of its order, shall require the defendant to pay any assessments required by section 2 of P.L. 1979, c.396 (C. 2C:43-3.1) and shall, consistent with the applicable provisions of N.J.S. 2C:43-3, N.J.S. 2C:43-4 and N.J.S. 2C:44-2 or section 1 of P.L. 1983, c.411 (C. 2C:43-2.1) require the defendant to make restitution.
d. In addition to any condition imposed pursuant to subsection b. or c., the court shall order a person placed on probation to pay a fee, not exceeding $25.00 per month for the probationary term, to probation services for use by the State, except as provided in subsection g. of this section. This fee may be waived in cases of indigency upon application by the chief probation officer to the sentencing court.
e. When the court sentences a person who has been convicted of a crime to be placed on probation, it may require him to serve a term of imprisonment not exceeding 364 days as an additional condition of its order. When the court sentences a person convicted of a disorderly persons offense to be placed on probation, it may require him to serve a term of imprisonment not exceeding 90 days as an additional condition of its order. In imposing a term of imprisonment pursuant to this subsection, the sentencing court shall specifically place on the record the reasons which justify the sentence imposed. The term of imprisonment imposed hereunder shall be treated as part of the sentence, and in the event of a sentence of imprisonment upon the revocation of probation, the term of imprisonment served hereunder shall be credited toward service of such subsequent sentence. A term of imprisonment imposed under this section shall be governed by the "Parole Act of 1979," P.L. 1979, c.441 (C.30:4-123.45 et al.).
Whenever a person is serving a term of parole as a result of a sentence of incarceration imposed as a condition of probation, supervision over that person shall be maintained pursuant to the provisions of the law governing parole. Upon termination of the period of parole supervision provided by law, the county probation department shall assume responsibility for supervision of the person under sentence of probation. Nothing contained in this section shall prevent the sentencing court from at any time proceeding under the provisions of this chapter against any person for a violation of probation.
f. The defendant shall be given a copy of the terms of his probation or suspension of sentence and any requirements imposed pursuant to this section, stated with sufficient specificity to enable him to guide himself accordingly. The defendant shall acknowledge, in writing, his receipt of these documents and his consent to their terms.
g. Of the moneys collected under the provisions of subsection d. of this section, $15.00 of each monthly fee collected before January 1, 1995 shall be deposited in the temporary reserve fund created by section 25 of P.L. 1993, c.275, and $10.00 of each shall be deposited into a "Community Service Supervision Fund" which shall be established by each county. The moneys in the "Community Service Supervision Fund" shall be expended only in accordance with the provisions of State law as shall be enacted to provide for expenditures from this fund for the purpose of supervising and monitoring probationers performing community service to ensure, by whatever means necessary and appropriate, that probationers are performing the community service ordered by the court and that the performance is in the manner and under the terms ordered by the court.
2C:45-2. Period of Suspension or Probation; Modification of Conditions; Discharge of Defendant a. When the court has suspended imposition of sentence or has sentenced a defendant to be placed on probation, the period of the suspension shall be fixed by the court at not to exceed the maximum term which could have been imposed or more than 5 years whichever is lesser. The period of probation shall be fixed by the court at not less than 1 year nor more than 5 years. The court, on application of a probation officer or of the defendant, or on its own motion, may discharge the defendant at any time.
b. During the period of the suspension or probation, the court, on application of a probation officer or of the defendant, or on its own motion, may (1) modify the requirements imposed on the defendants; or (2) add further requirements authorized by N.J.S. 2C:45-1. The court shall eliminate any requirement that imposes an unreasonable burden on the defendant.
c. Upon the termination of the period of suspension or probation or the earlier discharge of the defendant, the defendant shall be relieved of any obligations imposed by the order of the court and shall have satisfied his sentence for the offense unless the defendant has failed:
(1) to fulfill conditions imposed pursuant to paragraph b. (11) of N.J.S. 2C:45-1, in which event the court may order that the probationary period be extended for an additional period not to exceed that authorized by subsection a. of this section; or
(2) to fulfill the conditions imposed pursuant to subsection c. of N.J.S. 2C:45-1, in which event the court shall order that the probationary period be extended for an additional period not to exceed that authorized by subsection a. of this section.
The extension may be entered by the court without the defendant's personal appearance if the defendant agrees to the extension.
2C:45-3. Summons or arrest of defendant under suspended sentence or on probation; commitment without bail; revocation and resentence a. At any time before the discharge of the defendant or the termination of the period of suspension or probation:
(1) The court may summon the defendant to appear before it or may issue a warrant for his arrest;
(2) A probation officer or peace officer, upon request of the chief probation officer or otherwise having probable cause to believe that the defendant has failed to comply with a requirement imposed as a condition of the order or that he has committed another offense, may arrest him without a warrant;
(3) The court, if there is probable cause to believe that the defendant has committed another offense or if he has been held to answer therefor, may commit him without bail, pending a determination of the charge by the court having jurisdiction thereof;
(4) The court, if satisfied that the defendant has inexcusably failed to comply with a substantial requirement imposed as a condition of the order or if he has been convicted of another offense, may revoke the suspension or probation and sentence or resentence the defendant, as provided in this section. No revocation of suspension or probation shall be based on failure to pay a fine or make restitution, unless the failure was willful.
b. When the court revokes a suspension or probation, it may impose on the defendant any sentence that might have been imposed originally for the offense of which he was convicted.
c. The commencement of a probation revocation proceeding shall toll the probationary period until termination of such proceedings. In the event that the court does not find a violation of probation, this subsection shall not operate to toll the probationary period.
2C:45-4. Notice and hearing on revocation or modification of conditions of suspension or probation The court shall not revoke a suspension of sentence or probation or delete, add or modify conditions of probation except after a hearing upon written notice to the defendant of the grounds on which such action is proposed. The defendant shall have the right to hear and controvert the evidence against him, to offer evidence in his defense, and to be represented by counsel.
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