Never is a good time to cause false public alarms — who in their right mind would argue with that? This is especially so based on the heightened nationwide tension following the tragic events at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School. Nevertheless, multiple witnesses apparently heard an 18-year-old New Jersey student make alleged threats during school hours. Additionally, the suspect allegedly stated he was going to “shoot up the school,” per the Camden County Prosecutor’s Office. But he made these alleged statements on February 9, per nj dot com. The events in Parkland, FL, however, transpired on Valentine’s Day.
Additionally, the Voorhees Township Police Department did not learn of this until February 15. Furthermore, the cops did not find any weapons after searching the man’s residence. Nevertheless, the government charged the man with second degree False Public Alarms and third degree Terroristic Threats. Consequently, the authorities remanded the suspect to the Camden County Correctional Facility pending a bail hearing.
False public alarms, N.J.S.A. 2c:33-3
Except as provided in subsection b. or c. of this section, a person is guilty of a crime of the third degree if he initiates or circulates a report or warning of an impending fire, explosion, crime, catastrophe, emergency, or any other incident knowing that the report or warning is false or baseless and that it is likely to cause evacuation of a building, place of assembly, or facility of public transport, or to cause public inconvenience or alarm.1
A person is guilty of a crime of the second degree if the false alarm involves a report or warning of an impending bombing, hostage situation, person armed with a deadly weapon as defined by subsection c. of N.J.S.2c:11-1,2 or any other incident that elicits an immediate or heightened response by law enforcement or emergency services.3
A person is guilty of a crime of the second degree if the false alarm involves a report or warning about any critical infrastructure located in this State. For purposes of this subparagraph, “critical infrastructure” means any building, place of assembly, or facility that is indispensably necessary for national security, economic stability, or public safety.4
A person is guilty of a crime of the third degree if he knowingly causes the false alarm to be transmitted to or within any organization, official or volunteer, for dealing with emergencies involving danger to life or property.5
A person is guilty of a crime of the second degree if in addition to the report or warning initiated, circulated or transmitted under subsection a. of this section, he places or causes to be placed any false or facsimile bomb in a building, place of assembly, or facility of public transport or in a place likely to cause public inconvenience or alarm. A violation of this subsection is a crime of the first degree if it occurs during a declared period of national, State or county emergency.6
A person is guilty of a crime of the second degree if a violation of subsection a. of this section in fact results in serious bodily injury to another person or occurs during a declared period of national, State or county emergency. A person is guilty of a crime of the first degree if a violation of subsection a. of this section in fact results in death.7
For the purposes of this section, “in fact” means that strict liability is imposed. It shall not be a defense that the death or serious bodily injury was not a foreseeable consequence of the person’s acts or that the death or serious bodily injury was caused by the actions of another person or by circumstances beyond the control of the actor. The actor shall be strictly liable upon proof that the crime occurred during a declared period of national, State or county emergency. It shall not be a defense that the actor did not know that there was a declared period of emergency at the time the crime occurred.8
A person is guilty of a crime of the fourth degree if the person knowingly places a call to a 9-1-1 emergency telephone system without purpose of reporting the need for 9-1-1 service.
All local and county law enforcement authorities shall submit an annual report, on a form prescribed by the Attorney General, to the Uniform Crime Reporting Unit, within the Division of State Police in the Department of Law and Public Safety, or to another designated recipient determined by the Attorney General, containing the number and nature of offenses under this section committed within their respective jurisdictions and the disposition of these offenses. Every two years, the Uniform Crime Reporting Unit or other designated recipient of the annual reports shall forward a summary of all reports received during the preceding two-year period, along with a summary of offenses investigated by the Division of State Police for the same period, to the State’s Office of Emergency Management.9
New Jersey Lawyer Michael Smolensky, Esquire, knows how to protect his clients. Mr. Smolensky can provide consultations for all cases involving a citation for Unsafe Lane Change. Call Now—(856) 812-0321.
1 N.J.S.A. 2c:33-3(a)(1)(a).
2 “Deadly weapon” means any firearm or other weapon, device, instrument, material or substance, whether animate or inanimate, which in the manner it is used or is intended to be used, is known to be capable of producing death or serious bodily injury or which in the manner it is fashioned would lead the victim reasonably to believe it to be capable of producing death or serious bodily injury. N.J.S.A. 2c:11-1(c).
“Serious bodily injury” means bodily injury which creates a substantial risk of death or which causes serious, permanent disfigurement, or protracted loss or impairment of the function of any bodily member or organ. N.J.S.A. 2c:11-1(b).
3 N.J.S.A. 2c:33-3(a)(1)(b).
4 N.J.S.A. 2c:33-3(a)(1)(c).
5 N.J.S.A. 2c:33-3(a)(2).
6 N.J.S.A. 2c:33-3(b).
7 N.J.S.A. 2c:33-3(c).
8 N.J.S.A. 2c:33-3(d).
9 N.J.S.A. 2c:33-3(e).