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NJ Inmate Wins On Criminal Appeal

22
Jul
2010

by in Criminal Defense

This NJ inmate won on appeal after having been convicted of drug possession. Figueroa v. New Jersey DOC, ? N.J. Super. ?, 2010 N.J. super. LEXIS ? (June 28, 2010) – DOC determination reversed.

“Because the DOC failed to prove appellant knew the item he was attempting to possess contained a prohibited substance under the regulation, we reverse…. Appellant was found guilty of attempting to possess marijuana. Although the term ‘possession’ is not contained in the definitional sections of the administrative code governing inmate discipline, N.J.A.C. 10A:1-2.2 and N.J.A.C. 10A:4-1.3, we are satisfied that in the context of prohibited act *.203, we should construe the term as the Court defined it for the purpose of imposing criminal liability under statutes charging individuals with possession of controlled dangerous substances, that is, ‘[p]ossession . . . signifies a knowing, intentional control of a designated thing, accompanied by a knowledge of its character.’ State v. Pena, 178 N.J. 297, 305 (2004) (quotations omitted)…. The hearing officer’s findings do not reasonably support the conclusion that appellant was aware that the tobacco pack Veguilla handed Washington on appellant’s behalf contained marijuana.”

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