Our office recently defended a client that had been charged with 4th degree Stalking. The allegations were that our client had placed an authorized GPS device on the victim’s vehicle in order to track their whereabouts. In recent years we have seen a drastic increase in these kinds of crimes as remote controlled GPS devices have become readily accessible online for a reasonable price and they are easy to install or click onto a vehicle. However, our client was a professional with no prior record and vigorously denied any wrongdoing or that he had purchased or installed the GPS.
The case was originally sent up to the Ocean County Superior Court in Toms River because it was an indictable felony charge. After the County Prosecutor’s Office had an opportunity to review the complaint, it was ultimately downgraded to a less serious charge of Harassment and sent back to the municipal court in town which it allegedly took place. However, things began to get more complicated when the alleged victim decided to hire his own attorney to prosecute the case instead of having his interests represented by the municipal court prosecutor.
In the months leading up to trial, no middle ground could be worked out and both sides dug in and evidence was exchanged on both sides and the police officers were subpoenaed in preparation of a trial date. However, on the day of trial, both sides laid out their cards and the case was conferenced extensively with all the parties, resulting in an outright dismissal of our client’s criminal harassment charge. As part of the negotiation, a separate fine for a town ordinance was written up and pled to by our client, resulting in no criminal record.
State v. C.A. decided on May 11, 2017