Client was an interstate delivery driver and a resident of a Southern state with concealed carry weapon laws. In route to a delivery, he was stopped (perhaps unlawfully) by police in Hudson County and asked if he had any weapons on him. He candidly replied that he had a concealed handgun and a permit from his home state for that gun. He also admitted to being in possession of a small amount of marijuana. Client’s permit, however, was not recognized by the laws of New Jersey and he was charged with the second degree crime of unlawful possession of a weapon. This charges carries a mandatory prison term of at least five years (up to ten years) with a a period of three-and-one-half years of parole ineligibility.
Client was, however, a veteran, a father, steadily self-employed as an interstate delivery driver, compliant with (even above and beyond) all the regulatory provisions of his state’s weapon permit requirements, and had zero contacts with the criminal justice system in any state. A thirty-page memo with exhibits, which reflected all this information, was presented to the prosecutor. As a result, his weapon charge was downgraded to the fourth degree regulatory offense of failure to have a lawful permit and his marijuana possession charge was dismissed. This made him eligible for the pre-trial intervention program, which, after one year, results in the dismissal of all charges so long as client remains arrest free. During that time, client will be able to return to his home state and report to the court by phone. Continue reading