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The Law Office of Thomas H. Martin Esq.Serving New Jersey With Integrity And Commitment

Being arrested and charged with a crime is one of the most stressful things that a person can go through.   In addition to a record, a conviction can result in fines or jail time and affect you driver’s license or job. The criminal justice system can be intimidating. You may feel confused and overwhelmed. A New Jersey criminal defense attorney can walk you through the process and protect your rights. Thomas H. Martin Esq. is committed to getting you the best result possible, either through a plea agreement or trial. Mr. Martin is a criminal defense attorney experienced in handling all types of criminal cases, ranging from traffic offenses and low-level misdemeanors to major felonies.  He goes to court all the time and routinely deals with the prosecutors and judges in New Jersey.

With years of experience trying cases in New Jersey, he will work with you to prepare your case for trial, and he will be there to answer any questions or concerns that may arise during the handeling of your casel.   Thomas H. Martin Esq. will provide you with competent advice regarding all available options so that you can make informed decisions regarding how your case will be handled.

When you are going up against the State of New Jersey you need experienced legal counsel. Regardless of whether you are facing an indictable criminal charge in the Superior Court, a drug charge in Municipal Court, a DWI, or even a simple motor vehicle charge you want to have the best possible result. Thomas H. Martin has been helping people face the most difficult of situations for years. Contact Thomas H. Martin at (732) 431-2224 to arrainge a free consultation.

 

The Grand Jury

A grand jury is a type of jury that determines whether a criminal indictment will issue. Currently, only the United States retains grand juries, although some other common lawjurisdictions formerly employed them, and most other jurisdictions employ some other type of preliminary hearing. In Ireland, they also functioned as local government authorities. A grand jury is so named because it has a greater number of jurors than a trial jury.

If a criminal case has not been resolved, downgraded, diverted or dismissed, the State will present the case to a grand jury for an indictment.  The grand jury is composed of ordinary citizens.  They are selected from voter registration, motor vehicle records and tax lists.  The county prosecutor presents evidence to the grand jury, which is charged with determining if there is sufficient evidence to formally charge defendant with a crime.

An indictment is not a finding of guilt.  Rather, it is merely an accusation.  As a general rule, neither the defendant nor their attorneys are present during the grand jury proceedings.  Witnesses, often the police officers who investigated the alleged crime, normally testify regarding the case.  After considering evidence, if a majority of the 23 grand jurors vote to return an indictment, the defendant will be formally charged.  The return of an indictment is called a true bill.  If a majority finds the evidence to be insufficient, the grand jury enters a no bill and the charges are dismissed.  The grand jury has the discretion, however, to charge defendant with a less serious crime.

 

United States

In the early decades of the United States grand juries played a major role in public matters. During that period counties followed the traditional practice of requiring all decisions be made by at least twelve of the grand jurors, (e.g., for a twenty-three-person grand jury, twelve people would constitute a bare majority). Any citizen could bring a matter before a grand jury directly, from a public work that needed repair, to the delinquent conduct of a public official, to a complaint of a crime, and grand juries could conduct their own investigations. In that era most criminal prosecutions were conducted by private parties, either a law enforcement officer, a lawyer hired by a crime victim or his family, or even by laymen. A layman could bring a bill of indictment to the grand jury; if the grand jury found there was sufficient evidence for a trial, that the act was a crime under law, and that the court had jurisdiction, it would return the indictment to the complainant. The grand jury would then appoint the complaining party to exercise the authority of an attorney general, that is, one having a general power of attorney to represent the state in the case. The grand jury served to screen out incompetent or malicious prosecutions.[7] The advent of official public prosecutors in the later decades of the 19th century largely displaced private prosecutions.[8]

While all states in the U.S. currently have provisions for Grand Juries,[9] today approximately half of the states employ them[10] and only twenty-two require their use, to varying extents.[11]

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This information on this website is not intended to create, and receipt or viewing of this information does not constitute, an attorney-client relationship. You should consult an attorney for advice regarding your unique needs. We invite you to contact us and welcome your calls, letters and electronic mail. Contacting us does not create an attorney-client relationship. Please do not send any confidential information to us until such time as an attorney-client relationship has been established.

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