A man who was convicted of aggravated sexual assault may receive a lesser sentence after the state Supreme Court reviewed his case on Monday. The Court decided that because of the wording of the law regarding New Jersey aggravated sexual assault regarding the crime he was convicted of, he should be sentenced under a lesser charge.
The man might still serve time in jail or prison because he will be resentenced for charges of sexual assault, aggravated assault and obstruction. When a person feels they have received a wrongful conviction for a crime, they might have a chance to appeal the decision. This is important as sometimes laws are misinterpreted by judges and sentences are more than they should have been, or a person was wrongfully convicted.
It is important that people who are arrested understand their rights. New Jersey sexual assault charges can result in significant prison time. In this case, the man whose conviction was thrown out was supposed to serve 20 years in prison. This long of a sentence can result in a person losing their job, being imprisoned for so long that they lose their skills to participate in the workplace and have a stigma attached to their reputation for the rest of their lives.
These things make it important to form a rigorous criminal defense. In cases involving allegations of sexual assault, it is important that the case is approached with sensitivity. At the same time it is equally important that people are able to have a fair trial and can defend themselves in court.
Source: Associated Press, “NJ sex assault conviction tossed over law wording,” April 29, 2013