Marlboro Police make a surprising number of criminal arrests. Most of the criminal arrests in Marlboro are for shoplifting and marijuana possession. I have represented clients for both these charges in the Marlboro Court. A significant amount of the criminal charges in Marlboro are also domestic violence related.
Either a police officer or a private citizen can file a criminal complaint in the Marlboro Township Court. The Marlboro Municipal Court has jurisdiction over most of these charges. If the charge is an indictable crime (felony), it will be sent to the Monmouth County Prosecutor’s Office for review.
In the meantime, you will be scheduled for a first appearance in the Marlboro Municipal Court. The court is located at 1979 Township Drive, Marlboro, New Jersey. The court is very close to Manalapan Township, which has its own municipal court only minutes away. Marlboro lies at the intersection of several important roads. These include Route 9, Route 18 and Route 520. Arrests for marijuana possession and drug paraphernalia are common after routine traffic stops on these roads.
This is known as the “complaint stage.” During this process, the intake unit will screen the complaints and any available evidence to determine whether they are going to keep the case. In some cases, the prosecutor’s office decides that there is insufficient evidence or that the allegations are too minor to warrant their involvement. In these cases, the Monmouth County Prosecutor’s Office will usually downgrade the indictable charges and return the complaints to the Marlboro Municipal Court as disorderly persons offenses.
In other states, disorderly persons offenses are called misdemeanors. In New Jersey, we have a distinction between disorderly persons and petty disorderly persons offenses. Common disorderly persons offenses in Marlboro include shoplifting and simple assault. These charges are punishable by up to 6 months in jail and a $1000 fine. Common petty disorderly persons offenses include disorderly conduct, sort of a catch all charge.
After the prosecutor’s office makes their determination, you will be scheduled for a status conference in the municipal court if your case was remanded. If the prosecutor’s office decides to keep your case, it will either assign to the pre-indictment court, or in more serious cases, directly to a trial team for a grand jury presentment.
A Grand Jury is a panel of jurors who will vote on whether your case proceeds or not. If the Grand Jury returns (true bills) an indictment, you will next be scheduled for a pre-arraignment conference. If you have already hired a criminal defense attorney by this time, your attorney will probably try to have your appearance at this hearing waived.
The next appearance will be your arraignment, where you must plead guilty or not-guilty. The prosecutor’s office will likely have provided all the evidence in the case to your attorney. The will ask acknowledgement of receipt of discovery. The arraignment is followed by status conferences and if necessary, trial. Call to speak with a Monmouth County criminal defense attorney to learn more about the process.