Justifications For Punishment

The life of the law has not been logic; it has been experience…
Oliver Wendell Holmes Jr., The Common Law 1 (1881).


Justifications for Punishment, utilitarian, utilitarianism, retributivist, retributivism, Rutgers School of Law Camden, Atlantic County, Bergen County, Burlington County, Camden County, Cape May County, Cumberland County, Essex County, Gloucester County, Hudson County, Hunterdon County, Mercer County, Middlesex County, Monmouth County, Morris County, Ocean County, Passaic County, Salem County, Somerset County, Sussex County, Union County, Warren County, criminal defense, drunk driving, traffic ticket, juvenile, attorney, lawyerThe Hopatcong cop charged with simple assault after his encounter with an air horn wielding individual in a bunny costume has made the news again. If nothing else, this will provide a case study, an object lesson if you will, in the justifications for punishment. I learned this in law school, so you might want to pay attention.

Apparently, the Sussex County First Assistant Prosecutor recently charged the officer with harassment, too. Indeed, one might say the government is providing the officer with on the job training for something that the criminals already know—don’t get caught. And let’s be candid. Read more


Time Limitations pursuant to N.J.S.A. 2c:1-6

drinking and driving, crime, disorderly persons offense, petty disorderly persons offense, drunk driving, dui, dwi, Time limitations, N.J.S.A. 2c-1-6, statute of limitations, New Jersey, Atlantic County, Bergen County, Burlington County, Camden County, Cape May County, Cumberland County, Essex County, Gloucester County, Hudson County, Hunterdon County, Mercer County, Middlesex County, Monmouth County, Morris County, Ocean County, Passaic County, Salem County, Somerset County, Sussex County, Union County, Warren County, criminal defense, drunk driving, traffic ticket, juvenile, attorney, lawyerTwelve years after an alleged incident, police arrested a man, took him from his home, and threw him in jail. Subsequently, a Union County grand jury returned an indictment against the South Plainfield man for murder and weapons offenses. Twelve years is a long time. Additionally, the victim died less than a day after the police found him shot in the head. Furthermore, authorities have not revealed to the media the reason for the 12 year delay. The only reason the State can get away with charging a man over a decade later is the statute that sets forth time limitations. What kind of evidence did the State spend all these years obtaining? Additionally, how good are their witnesses against this man? How well do they remember events from 12 years ago? Furthermore, how will this man track down defense witnesses? These and other questions create skepticism and doubt about the State’s case.
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General Requirements of Culpability, N.J.S.A. 2c:2-2

This is the final post in a series on the mental culpability element in criminal law. The previous posts addressed the common law and the Model Penal Code (“MPC”). Those posts are available here, here, and here. This post, however, will discuss statutory reform and New Jersey’s adoption of the MPC in the New Jersey Code of Criminal Justice. Furthermore, this post will focus on the General Requirements of Culpability under New Jersey law. Read more


Mens Rea: What is it and why does it matter?

Criminal Intent

mens rea, criminal intent, specific intent, general intent, malum prohibitum, malum in seI listened to the podcast below, featuring Robert Alt of the Buckeye Institute in Ohio, with great interest. Indeed, Alt focused on a topic that the academy discusses extensively, mens rea (or criminal intent).Alt addressed a specific problem of modern penal laws, which he refers to as malum prohibitum. In particular, Alt spoke about modern criminal laws defined without the element of criminal intent. Although strict liability regulations may appeal to lawmakers, they can yield absurd and devastating results. Alt illustrated the point Read more

Definitions, N.J. Criminal Code, N.J.S.A. 2c:1-14

Definitions

definitions, n.j.s.a. 2c:1-14In the New Jersey Code of Criminal Justice, these terms have the following definitions, unless a different meaning plainly applies:

Statute includes the Constitution and a local law or ordinance of a political subdivision of the State.

Act or action means a bodily movement whether voluntary or involuntary.

Omission means a failure to act.

Conduct means an action, omission, and Read more